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"Holiday for the Hostile" was my favorite of this three part series. This story dealt not only in the paranormal with Tile X (as in the first book) but also dabbled in the horrors committed by man. More of a cross between a paranormal horror and a murder mystery, this tale was enjoyable on multiple levels. The narration was leaps and bounds better than the first story in the series, but like the first story, this one sort of just drops off at the end. When I read a book, I appreciate the courtesy of an actual ending! I wouldn't recommend reading this book unless you've already read book one and intend on reading book three!
I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
It's a great audiobook !Narration is quite clear ! but it's not a standalone ! one should must have gone through part 1 of this book to understand this one ! I really loved this one and was able to complete in just 2 seating's !
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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This is an unusual book made even more strange in this audio presentation. So much so, it is hard to quantify. Firstly, the main protagonist is a 14 year old girl and although written in the third person apart from a first person prologue is seen in large part from her point of view. It is inevitable filled with teenage angst, guilt and anger. And is juvenile. But there iare also some fairly violent, semi-graphic scenes of death and a lot of listing and sexual congress references, mixed with a fair amount of humour. It suggests a book to be lightheartedly enjoyed by adults looking for a fun story with a hint of paranormal horror, or older teens feeling grown up but naughty. However, the narration is such that it sounds like a book for older children, read in the sort of sing song reading, with wide ranging intonation and an eternal upbeat cadence reserved for telling silly stories of make-believe adventures. It certainly does not fit the content of this book. So for whom was it written?
The idea of the story is really fun: a tile which is able to cause injury or death, but only at the request of it's human companion, in this case the girl, Serina. She is one of seven children, living pretty miserably together with her mother, both her father and step dad having been killed off by Tile X previously. Temporarily blinded by the evil tile, she tries to get on with a normal life but, afraid it might hurt her again, carries it with her even when the whole family (other than one sister) are taken to Ireland to stay with her grandfather. None of them want to go.
Most characterisation is brief but enough to give a vague impression of the people, a sort of self obsessed teen's eye view of them. Almost all of them are unpleasant, human cartoons rather in the style of Rails Dahl. The author captures well the put upon attitude of a fourteen years old girl, especially one who also does feel at least a little responsible for the deaths of two parental figures but not enough to to see hurt of anyone else. It is funny and quirky, an entertaining light read for young adults and older adults alike.
But not as a listen. The narration is often very good. Alexander Roddy's pleasant voice is well accented for the location of the story, namely Manchester, in England, and his vocalisations of the different characters is great, being distinctive and individual, well suited to each person speaking. But it is the reading of the between conversation text which is so perculiar. Very enthusiastic but with a wry twist, his intonations soar up and down without much relevance to what has been written and there are odd out of place pauses where none need to exist but none at all where they would be welcome, for example at the end of a chapter. At first, this just seemed to add quirkiness to the story. By half way through, it had become a maddening distraction. And, as previously mentioned, raised considerable doubt over who was expected to be hearing this book.
I was freely gifted my copy of Holiday for the Hostile, by the rights holder, via Audiobook Boom. My thanks for that: it was an experience. I cannot recommend it, however, as I really cannot see a suitable audience - the story is too old for the very young style of narration. Better to buy the print book.
If you could sum up Holiday for the Hostile in three words, what would they be?
Weird, Worrying and Wonderful. This novel is well off the wall, creates a great sense of unease but is great for all that.
What was one of the most memorable moments of Holiday for the Hostile?
Scalps hanging from trees
What does Alexander Doddy bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?
A sense of tension
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
Jimmy Poodles' demise