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Haven

By: Tom Deady
Narrated by: Matt Godfrey
Length: 14 hrs and 43 mins
5.0 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Publisher's Summary

In 1961, the small town of Haven thought they'd gotten rid of their monster. After a series of child killings, Paul Greymore was caught carrying a wounded girl. His face, disfigured from a childhood accident, seemed to confirm he was the monster the community hoped to banish. With Paul in prison, the killings stopped.

For 17 years, Haven was peaceful again. But Paul served his time and has now returned to Haven - the town where he grew up, and the scene of his alleged crimes. Paul insists he didn't commit those crimes, and several townspeople believe him including the local priest, a young boy named Denny, and his best friend Billy.

Trouble is, now that Paul is back home, the bizarre killings have started again - and the patterns match the deaths from Haven's past. If Paul isn't the killer, who is?

Or what is? An unlikely band of adventurers attempts to uncover the truth, delving into long-hidden tunnels that might actually be inhabited by a strange, predatory creature.

Haven is a compelling horror epic in the spirit of It or Summer of Night, and a stunning debut novel from a gifted author who knows that the darkest horrors lurk inside human beings, even when there is a monster on the loose.

©2016 Cemetery Dance (Hardcover rights) Tom Deady (Paperback rights) (P)2017 Tom Deady

What listeners say about Haven

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Excellent read.

Reminders of Stephen King It and stand by me/the body. Lovecraft and stranger things if you like those you'll love this.

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  • Char
  • 12-09-2017

Good "Evil in a Small Town"/ "Coming of Age" Story

What did you love best about Haven?

The characters of Denny and Paul Greymore.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I would have tried to make it a little more imaginative because this story has been done before. I think the characters could have been a little more fleshed out.

Which scene was your favorite?

When Mossy met Denny's mother.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, it's too long.

Any additional comments?

My opinion may have been affected by Stephen King's IT, which was released this past weekend at theaters and is in many ways a similar story to this one.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Spooky Mike
  • 17-10-2017

Solid story solid peformance

Solid first book by Tom Deady. This is an author to start following. I usually listen to books about half this length so I was a little nervous about getting into such a long story but it kept my attention the whole time, even when I occasionally got lost in the characters. As others have said this definitely has a Steven King feel to the story and much like many of King's novel's I wouldn't lump this into horror but more a mystery or thriller. This would be a good monster story for someone who isn't a hardcore horror fan and wants to get into some a little bit scary.
Matt Godfrey did a great job. He has a very calm and easy voice to listen to.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review

11 people found this helpful

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  • Natalie @ ABookLoversLife
  • 06-10-2017

Enjoyable.

After 17 years, Paul Greymore is finally free. He didn't want to come back to Haven but had no choice. 17 years ago children went missing, Paul was found with a wounded girl and was blamed for the killings. People accepted his guilt, even though there was no real evidence and Paul had the same kind of weird marks as the girl had, because for 17 years Haven has been quiet. The butcher was put away! Now though, with Paul back in town, the killings have started back up. They are eerily similar to the ones before. Is Paul the killer?

I bought the eBook of this when it first came out because it sounded like something I'd love, so when the audio came out, I dived right in!! Plot wise, it was entertaining, fast paced and held my attention. I loved how they explained the monster and how it came to be. It was believable! I thoroughly enjoyed the descriptive writing and the level of detail the author went into and I enjoyed the overall story. So why not 5 stars, well simply because it was so similar to It by Stephen King and didn't really add anything new. It followed the same format as It and I couldn't help but compare the two. In and of itself, the book was great, I just felt like it needed something new and fresh in order to stand out more.

Character wise, I loved Billy and Denny. They were well written and developed and I loved seeing them grow throughout the book. They learn, they accept, they grow and they finally stand up for themselves. All the characters grew somewhat during the story, which was nice to see. We have the obligatory bad guys, the Sheriff and his son, Dale. Dale was horrible and I really disliked him!! My favourite was Paul though. He has gone through so much since he was a kid, and it broke my heart for him!

In all, this was a good read. I enjoyed the story and am happy that it was sort of left open! If you enjoy the 80's horror feel, then you will enjoy this!

I was voluntarily provided this audiobook for free from the author, narrator, or publisher. This in no way affected nor influenced my thoughts.

8 people found this helpful

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  • DK
  • 17-10-2017

Enjoyed this

Parts of this book reminded me of "The Body" by Stephen King if all ages had been in that group.
Great narration. I've found a new author!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Simone
  • 06-11-2017

Impressive

This horror epic was so incredibly worth the listen! In fact, I was a bit depressed to have it end. Author Tom Deady weaves a sophisticated tale about monsters (real and imagined) that also looks deep within the human condition to contemplate our fearful and judgmental nature. This story is jam packed with compelling characters; from characters I longed to save to characters I'd like to have strangled myself. An authentic and complex story, 'Haven' is one that I would read again. Matt Godfrey delivers a phenomenal performance. I would recommend this story to anyone who enjoys a good horror/mystery/thriller!

I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Chris Miller
  • 10-08-2019

Terrific coming-of-age horror...

An exceptional coming of age horror novel. Weighty, but never boring, this is exactly MY kind of book. A young man, disfigured and shamed, is sent to prison for 17 years in 1961 for murders he claims he never committed. Now free, he comes back to his hometown of Haven, Massachusetts to start his life over with the help of his friend and mentor, Catholic Priest, Father McCarthy. The chief of police Crawford put this guy away in 1961, and immediately wants to put him back, while his own son terrorizes some younger boys in town. But is something more afoot in Haven? And why do there never seem to be any roadkill left near the lake? That's more than enough of a taste for this terrific tour-de-force of a novel. The characters in this book ALL ring true and cause you to fall in love with them or despise them from your very core, depending on which one it is. The writing is very natural, not over the top, and straight forward. The prose is gentle, but effective, the dialogue never fails to come across as authentic, and the tension starts on page one and doesn't stop building until the final one. I've read plenty of terrific books over the years, and I've come to adore the coming of age horror sub-genre. Stephen King's IT is often what I consider the standard bearer, along with Boy's Life by Robert McCammon (though not horror), and HAVEN takes its place amongst the titans of the genre and is clearly comfortable there. The novel never tries too hard to impress, but does so anyway page after page. I really enjoyed the straight-forward storytelling here. As I said before, Deady never goes over the top, never abandons the naturalistic style he employs, and this is one of the books greatest strengths. Deady has no need to impress you. He's already done it with this masterful work. The story is both simple, yet deep, spanning decades while still feeling intimate and immediate. The stakes are high, but they are presented in such a way that only a handful of characters are aware of what's happening, keeping that intimacy I described front and center throughout. This is not an extreme horror novel that revels in buckets of gore and depravity. This is about real-to-life small town folks facing down something far more powerful than themselves. And that's part of its beauty. What would YOU do if you found yourself face to face with the horror this book presents? I think for most of us, Tom Deady has shown precisely how the average Joe would react. This novel has a very mainstream appeal, while still feeling like very much its own thing. It isn't trying to be something it isn't, not trying to copy anything else. There are elements here that pay homage to the greats of this sub-genre, yet it manages to be completely its own, unique story. And while there IS a monster (along with some human monsters as well), nothing supernatural is present here. I like supernatural, and think this kind of story is a fine fit for such an approach, but by avoiding the supernatural, Deady manages to wed this tale to reality in such a way that even the unnamable beast within the pages seems frightfully plausible. And I was never quite able to shake that. This speaks to magnificent, understated writing. If you like horror in the vein of Stephen King at his best when writing about children, you're in for a treat here. AND you're in for something Mr. King hasn't given us already. At no point did I feel like I was reading a riff on anything else, but still appreciated its sense of knowing whom its peers are, respecting them, and doing its own thing. If you're not a horror fan, you'll likely still have a great time with this book. It isn't overly gory, though it is suspenseful throughout, and the characters are drawn in such a way that you'd want to follow and know more about them even if this were a cozy, romantic mystery. But never fear, horror lovers, there's still plenty here to get your hackles up. Matt Godfrey OWNED the narration here. He was magnificent, as he always is. There's nothing to consider here, other than the format you want to read this book in. Print, digital, audio, all are available, so there's literally ZERO excuse to skip this one. And if you do, you're the lesser for it.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 21-06-2019

Written for Tweens

The story isn't bad but this is definitely a tween book. The narrator was good except for the pronunciation of a few words which really bothered me. I had trouble following what was going on because the narrator sounded like he was saying Danny or Dinny instead of Denny at times. Also, he would pronounce Jimmy as Ginny. It's amazing that I even finished listening to this book because I was so frustrated that I had to keep going back to figure out what he was saying or if a new character was being introduced.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Midwestbonsai
  • 07-03-2018

Nothing is what it seems

Paul Greymore has been convicted of brutally killing more than a dozen children in the quiet town of Haven.  Now 17 years later he is released from prison and the killings begin again.  The police chief is convinced it is Greymore and will go to whatever lengths necessary to stop him.  Greymore, friendless and disfigured, must prove his innocence while simultaneously protecting the victims.

Nothing is what it seems in the little town of Haven.  A corrupt police chief, his bullying son and something mysterious in the lake.  Two boys find themselves in the center of violence, mystery, and strange friends as they try to protect themselves and the residents of Haven.  The setting is in the late 1970s, which is well defined and described, but kind of makes the science portion of the novel a little farfetched, stretching the listener's belief.

While the town’s people try to solve the mystery of the killings, the listener is never really surprised by who actually is the culprit.  It is more about discovering how the injustices will be solved, rather than the mystery of the killing themselves.  For an idyllic town, there is a lot of violence and corruption; it is contradictory on its surface.  Still, it is entertaining to listen to and the characters are interesting with a good amount of action.  Kind of a Spielberg story of kids saving the day for the hapless adults, though quite a bit more violent.

The story is performed by Matt Godfrey who does a good job.  His character voices feel true and are easily discernible.  A generally competent performance without getting in the way of the story.  He is a  good choice and enjoyable to listen to.  The production quality is excellent throughout without flaws.

Haven is a who-done-it that the listener is sure of pretty early on.  It is about how the characters will solve their own abuses, rather than who is actually doing the killings. The action is entertaining and keeps the listener involved, though there is some redundancy throughout, and you may find yourself kind of thinking, “OK, let’s move forward.”  But still well worth a listen.  It straddles the line of the young adult category and might be a good listen for older teen listeners too.

Audiobook was provided for review by the narrator.

Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog.

[If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks!]

3 people found this helpful

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  • Tiffany
  • 08-11-2017

Haven

What a wonderfully written story. I was drawn in from the very beginning. My two quibbles are that the book could have been a little bit shorter and the ending with the sheriff. The narrator's performance was very good. I received this audiobook for free through Audiobook Boom for my unbiased review.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Platypire Bob
  • 06-11-2017

Fantastic!

*I requested and was granted a code for this audio book via BookBoom! to be honestly reviewed*

This book is flipping AMAZING! The plot is good, keeping tension and intrigue throughout; I was entranced and actually a little angry when I’d have to turn it off lol. Superb characters, great monster story, and I loved the redemption and how things were brought to light. I would happily watch this as a full-on movie or miniseries, as long as someone was there to make sure it was done according to the book. Descriptions were incredibly vivid, and I had no problem at all clearly imagining this whole thing in my head. Just fantastic!!

The plot flowed smoothly, everything feeling like it fit in just right. I didn’t feel like it was rushed, nor was it stretched out to for the sake of making the book longer; I think it was written just as the characters told it and experienced it.
5 Stars to the story.

The choice of narrator was on point, too. His voice perfectly matched both the genre and the story itself, and I thought he did a great job with the voice changes. He didn’t always change much, but it was always enough to tell which character was speaking. His tension and emotion fit perfectly, as well, and I am definitely a fan! Very well done, and I hope to hear more from this narrator. I would actually love to hear more from this narrator and author together, they seem to make an awesome duo!
5 Stars to the narration.

Overall, Bob says: 5 Full on Platypires, and most definitely one of my favorite reads this year!


2 people found this helpful

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  • Emma J
  • 16-09-2019

Excellent.

Haven was recommended to me as a book to read for fans of Stephen King's IT. I do agree that fans of that book will likely enjoy this one but this book stands on its own merits. The cast is very likable. They're complex and realistic. They're all believable human beings (except a few that are completely without redemption) The plot isn't anything new but the writing and aforementioned characters are incredible, they suck you in completely. The performance by Matt Godfrey is exceptional, and he's quickly becoming my favourite audiobook narrator. Overall, this audiobook is exceptional and I would recommend it to anyone who loves horror, especially character driven horror.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 24-09-2017

Creature in the Lake

This book remind me of a Summer of Night and IT both are coming of age type books. A lot of children in Haven disappear and Paul Greymore tried to help one of the children when she is attached and accused of the murder. He spends 17 years in prison for all the child killings and Haven is peaceful again. Then Paul is released and the killings begin again matching the killings of 17 years earlier. An unlikely band of children and adults attempt to uncover the truth, going into long-hidden tunnels from an old experimental laboratory that might actually be inhabited by a predatory creature only one person knows is really there.

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  • Tony Bough
  • 30-09-2017

Evil in a small town story reminiscent of King

Matt Godfrey's narration of this book is outstanding. The way he voices characters, pacing of the narration, tone of voice draw you in instantly. Really good!

In terms of the story the genre and feel is very close to Stephen King's works. I personally really like that. Characters range from those that you really like to those that you are supposed to hate and do in fact dislike. There's plenty going on and the general pace of the book is really great. The story draws you in and I found myself listening for longer than I intended as I was wanting to see what was happening. It's fun and fast paced with a good horror element that isn't just about gore.

If you enjoy Stephen King's work or Dean Koontz then you will like this.

A really great book that I enjoyed from Start to finish!

This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.