Reviews – The Angel Maker & The Shining

Posted February 27, 2023 by Carole in Reviews / 7 Comments

I received this book for free from the publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Reviews – The Angel Maker & The ShiningThe Angel Maker by Alex North
Narrator: Rosalie Craig
Published by Celadon Books, Macmillan Audio on February 28, 2023
Genres: Fiction / Thrillers / Suspense
Length: 8 hours 1 minute
Pages: 336
Format: ARC, Audiobook
Source: Publisher
Amazon | Audible | B&N | Kobo |

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Whisper Man and The Shadows comes a dark, suspenseful new thriller about the mysteries of fate, the unbreakable bond of siblings, and a notorious serial killer who was said to know the future.

Growing up in a beautiful house in the English countryside, Katie Shaw lived a charmed life. At the cusp of graduation, she had big dreams, a devoted boyfriend, and a little brother she protected fiercely. Until the day a violent stranger changed the fate of her family forever.

Years later, still unable to live down the guilt surrounding what happened to her brother, Chris, and now with a child of her own to protect, Katie struggles to separate the real threats from the imagined. Then she gets the phone call: Chris has gone missing and needs his big sister once more.

Meanwhile, Detective Laurence Page is facing a particularly gruesome crime. A distinguished professor of fate and free will has been brutally murdered just hours after firing his staff. All the leads point back to two old cases: the gruesome attack on teenager Christopher Shaw, and the despicable crimes of a notorious serial killer who, legend had it, could see the future.

I liked this one but I thought that it could be hard to follow at times. After quickly getting lost while listening to the audiobook, I decided to start over and listen to the book while following along in my print copy which worked very well for me. There are a lot of characters and quite a few flashbacks to an earlier time so it is a lot to keep straight. I did enjoy the book quite a bit and was eager to see how everything would be connected.

The book opens a few years in the past with Katie telling her brother to walk home by himself so she could hang out with her boyfriend. When she gets home, her brother has been attacked and his life will soon spiral out of control. Then we meet Detective Laurence Page as he begins to investigate the murder of an older man which raises a lot of questions. Katie will do whatever it takes to keep her brother safe while the detective is determined to find out what really happened.

I believe that this is the first time that I have had the chance to listen to Rosalie Craig’s narration and I thought that she did a great job with the story. I found her voice to be very pleasant and easy to listen to for long periods of time. Even though I thought that the narrator did a good job with the story, I believe that this is one that might be best read in another format due to the complexity of the story.

I would recommend this book to others. Once I got into the story, I was hooked. I found the story to be incredibly interesting and exciting. I couldn’t wait to see how everything would turn out in the end. I look forward to reading more of Alex North’s work in the future.

I received a review copy of this book from Celadon Books and Macmillan Audio.

Reviews – The Angel Maker & The ShiningThe Shining by Stephen King
Narrator: Campbell Scott
Series: The Shining #1
Published by Penguin Random House on January 28, 1977
Genres: Fiction / Horror
Length: 15 hours 50 minutes
Pages: 674
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Amazon | Audible | B&N | Kobo |

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Before Doctor Sleep, there was The Shining, a classic of modern American horror from the undisputed master, Stephen King.

Jack Torrance’s new job at the Overlook Hotel is the perfect chance for a fresh start. As the off-season caretaker at the atmospheric old hotel, he’ll have plenty of time to spend reconnecting with his family and working on his writing. But as the harsh winter weather sets in, the idyllic location feels ever more remote . . . and more sinister. And the only one to notice the strange and terrible forces gathering around the Overlook is Danny Torrance, a uniquely gifted five-year-old.

I finally tackled this book! And it was really good. I have never seen the movie but I still thought that I knew what to expect when I started this one but it was a bit different. There is a ton of hype surrounding this book and I fully expected this book to become an all-time favorite. It didn’t quite make that list for me but it was still a great read.

After losing his teaching job, Jack accepts a position as the winter caretaker of the Overlook Hotel. Jack, his wife, Wendy, and their son, Danny will spend the winter alone at the hotel. Jack thinks that this will be the perfect opportunity for his family and hopes to finally finish the manuscript he has been working on. Jack’s 5-year-old son, Danny, seems to know things because of his special gift. He can sense that some bad things have happened in this historic hotel.

This story felt ominous from the start. The more I learned about the hotel the more certain that I was that I would not want to visit. Whatever you do – stay out of room 217! Jack had his share of problems before taking on the job at the hotel and after a short period of time, he spirals into periods of madness and violence. Danny was really the star of this novel though. Being at the hotel was hard on this gifted boy who could see things others couldn’t but he proved to be incredibly brave. I really appreciated his connection with the former cook at the hotel, Mr. Halloran, quite a bit.

I thought that Campbell Scott did a great job with the narration. I believe that this was the first time that I have listened to his work and I was rather impressed. I thought that he did a great job with the cast of characters in this story which included not only an adult male and female but also a child. I thought that he brought a lot of excitement to his reading and found myself wanting to listen for hours at a time.

I would recommend this book to others. I thought that it was a very enjoyable story and I am thrilled that I am finally able to say that I have read it. My only complaint is that the story did feel overly long at times and bogged down a bit in some sections but overall it was a great reading experience.

7 responses to “Reviews – The Angel Maker & The Shining

  1. I saw that you read these on your weekly recap!! I am glad that they turned out to be such win of reads for you though. Stephen King’s books always look so long lol

  2. You are really reading a lot. Horror is not for me. Interesting strategy to listen while looking at the print. I have not tried that but I can see the appeal with some books that have lots of characters or possibly difficult pronunciations or dense world-building.

  3. I need to try the audio of The Shining. I do want to read the story but the page count always scared me off a bit. So glad to see that you enjoyed the audio of this one! Too bad about The Angel Maker. There are definitely some books better read in print so you can flip back and revisit aspects of the story.

  4. I read The Shining a few years ago, and while I didn’t love it, I did really like Danny and his connection with Mr. Halloran! They were my favorite part of that book.

  5. I agree, there are some occasions where traditionally reading the story works better. I’ve seen The Shining a long time ago but I can’t remember what happens in the end, The setting really stood out to me though. Looked like a neat hotel but not one you’d want to be stuck at alone. Glad to hear you enjoyed the book. It is a long one!