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Publisher's Summary

A young woman discovers a strange portal in her uncle's house, leading to madness and terror in this gripping new novel from the author of the "innovative, unexpected, and absolutely chilling" (Mira Grant, Nebula Award-winning author) The Twisted Ones.

Pray they are hungry.

Kara finds these words in the mysterious bunker that she’s discovered behind a hole in the wall of her uncle's house. Freshly divorced and living back at home, Kara now becomes obsessed with these cryptic words and starts exploring the peculiar bunker - only to discover that it holds portals to countless alternate realities. But these places are haunted by creatures that seem to hear thoughts...and the more you fear them, the stronger they become.

With her distinctive "delightfully fresh and subversive" (SF Bluestocking) prose and the strange, sinister wonder found in Guillermo del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth, The Hollow Places is another compelling and white-knuckled horror novel that you won't be able to pause.

©2020 Ursula Vernon. All rights reserved. (P)2020 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Hollow Places

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

It was Good

I feel like the premise of the story was good! The narrator was good. It had good characters. The book was good.
I wish it was better though. It had the potential of being supremely horrifying. But instead, the author had the characters take on a absurd humour throughout the horror. I thought it took away from the imagery.

2 people found this helpful

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Refreshingly new type of story

It was such an enjoyable story with fleshed out characters and a horror you couldn't see coming

1 person found this helpful

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picked this up on a library thing rec. regret.

poorly written, lack of atmosphere, narrator does nothing to help the matter. juvenile at best.

protagonist is pretty annoying generally, and ruins any possibility for creepiness with constant sarcastic remarks and silly comments. supposed to be a midlife divorcee but acts like a 17 year old who can't cope with life.

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Wish it was longer!

Great performance, wonderfully fun characters, spooky concept. Extra rewarding if you've read Algernon Blackwood's "The Willows."

As soon as I'm done this review, I'm starting another Kingfisher novel. How can I not? This was incredible!

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"The Twisted Ones: 2.0

Not as good as the original. drags a bit at the end. okay otherwise, though.

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Story was fine but characters are hard

It’s simple. Sometimes characters make or break a novel. That’s the case here. There are some good scares and good parts to this book but a fair bit of them are ruined by dialogue that attempts to constantly make poorly timed jokes between the two characters. They show they have chemistry but detract from anything scary going on.

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Awesome concept, lacks in other places.

I enjoyed the concept, very origional and is just as interesting as it is disturbing in all the right ways.
The naration is great.
I found a major lack of depth of emotion and character developement. It feels as if the strange concept of the story is more important than the actual characters depth. Of course you see through the eyes of the main character, but you don't really feel the reality and depth of emotion in a great first person experience.
I'd say compared to other books of its genre its mid range, not bad, but not amazing. I don't feel like time is wasted on the read because it was enjoyable and origional, but I wouldn't put it in my top 10... 3/5***

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Amazing read!

Absolutely loved this book and couldn't put it down- it hooked me from the very beginning. The author did an amazing job at creating a relatable and lovable protagonist and equally wonderful companion. The plot was entirely unique and really kept you guessing what could possibly happen next.

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A fresh, funny, and engrossing horror.

The narrator, Hilary Huber, was fantastic. Her voice was a perfect match for the main character.

The Hollow Places is a lot of fun! I liked Kara - she accepts her faults and flaws and just goes with it, as well as having a bit of quirkiness to her that makes her realistic. She has this self-deprecating sense of humour that is relatable and not pathetic.
The other character, Simon, was also fun and likeable. The two played off one another really well and had an easy friendship that was believable.

This novel is also funny. Like really really funny. I laughed out loud numerous times while listening. I was not expecting this from a horror novel.

The horror aspects, to be honest, weren’t that scary, but I was fine with that. What I loved was the mystery and the tone surrounding the “hollow place”. If you’ve read House of Leaves there’s a serious vibe from that going on, at first, then it spawns into something different. There are mysteries - some of which are resolved at the end, some are not - and a twist that you kind of start guessing halfway through but aren’t sure why. And then when it happens, it’s not really what you expect.

At a couple of points, the story started to drag for a little bit, but it wasn’t egregious and the story soon ramped up again. I was never confused and I loved the setting (both the Wonder Museum and the Willow World). I will definitely listen/read another one of Kingfisher's novels.

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Very well written

I am not a fan of sci-fi or fantasy. I had assumed it’s a horror novel, and despite this misunderstanding I wasn’t disappointed. The writing is very engaging. The characters are likeable. I couldn’t stop listening. I honestly don’t think the story is great, but the writing style is so good, that everything works.

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  • Graham KUNISCH
  • 2020-10-28

This could have been a great suspense novel.

2.5 stars the story was there but the writing was not. This read like a journal entry of a teenager. There were many opportunities for the author to create suspense and mystery but they were truly missed. I had high hopes that this would be a really good October read, but was let down in the end. The performance was ok and unfortunately the readers voice was grating. I made it through thinking it would all fall together in the end but it never did. The last few chapters seemed out of place and did not really connect for me with the rest of the story. This novel was close to a DNF.

20 people found this helpful

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  • katiegreen
  • 2020-11-11

Go in with humour

This story is bizarre. It's reads more like a kooky horror movie rather than being terrifying. If you go into this book looking more for a laugh I think you will enjoy it. The characters are enjoyable if you assume they are running on pure hysteria. I can't say I hate this book or love it. It just leaves me feeling like ok, that just happened.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-10-19

Not for me

The beginning of the story where the characters are introduced is incredible. Wonderful people I wish I could meet. After that it just gets dull. If I had realized this was a modern retelling of The Willows by Algernon Blackwood I would have skipped it entirely.

7 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Nathan T. Wilson
  • 2020-10-11

Kinda like NeverWhere except in the US.

Loving the characters, creepy spooky setting, similar in tone to Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman, except set in the US.

I was disappointed with the voice actor, she also did The Twisted Ones, and she just has one of those voices that is just mentally typecasted to that one character, and so now when I hear her read for any other protagonist it sounds like the wrong person somehow. I will admit she did a great job with Simon's voice, but it was hard for me to associate her with Kara.
I really think they should have just gotten a new reader for this book.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-10-30

Chekov's Corpse Otter

Another great, spoopy yarn from T. Kingfusher. Mysterious, fascinating, and creepy, I can't wait for the next book.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Jonas Lee
  • 2021-04-28

Good Luck Looking at a Willow Tree Again

There were some spine tingling moments, some very squinted looks of confusion and some out loud laughs while following this story. Kind of like Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer popped in for some input on a Neil Gaiman-esque story. Kingfisher does a great job of imagery even though I'm still trying to wrap my head around how anyone could describe a 4th dimensional nightmareverse.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-10-14

Kingfisher sticks another landing!

I really enjoy the way T. kingfisher writes. The narration felt a little rocky at first for some
reason and I’m not sure why, but either way after a point she nailed it 100% (she narrated The Twisted Ones and I loved it). I really enjoy these stand alone novels but I wholly loved The Ckockwork Boys series. Really anything she’s written is worth a go!

5 people found this helpful

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  • Jennifer
  • 2021-04-29

my only complaint is that it ended

this book was just wonderful in all of the ways! the author's voice, the excellent narrator, the completely three-dimensional characters and the creepy other world that creeps into the characters world- I will absolutely listen to this again 💖

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Housepants97
  • 2021-04-07

Cool, scary, but characters lack

I liked this book. The idea was cool, the story pushed forward with momentum, and I was genuinely scared and intrigued. My biggest issue was with the characters and they’re lack of appeal. I get that a person— someone who loves sci-fi/ fantasy (and, ahem, writes it, no offense) is probably more of an “indoor” type. Meaning they probably lack in the social skills department. That said, writers—and we’re all indoor people when you get down to it—need to make it their mission to observe human nature with depth, compassion, and lack of judgement.

The choice to make a main character’s overall personality trait be “sarcastic” makes them actually appear to be quite vulnerable and insecure. Sarcasm doesn’t equal comedy. It’s a transparent quality used as a defense mechanism. I say this because the journey these character embark on is so extraordinary, how the character reacts is crucial. But if you can’t nail down character the story will suffer as a result. I’m sure many readers won’t care or notice the difference and I’m sure the author would get defensive if they were to hear this kind of feedback, but it definitely makes what could be a great novel to just mediocre.

If the story was told from a character who acted sarcastic as a cover and was actually aware and honest about this flaw, I think this would have been a much, much better novel.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jasmin Lee
  • 2022-03-17

It was okay - a little bizarre

Sometimes books don’t translate well to audio format- at least when you are reading you can skim over the boring parts. We are subjected to main character’s rambling thoughts and conjectures nonstop with constant “MAYBE this…” “MAYBE that…” MAYBE MAYBE MAYBE constantly throughout the whole story. If the editors cut all the MAYBES out that’s about 40 pages gone. And listening to it I was constantly saying “Oh shut up and get on with the story!” And then the story was bizarre and convoluted and took an entire chapter to explain the weirdness. Which really did not convince me of anything and by then I checked out.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • R.L.
  • 2021-08-07

Un peu court

le concept, et le traitement sont parfaits. Les personnages sont réussis. La narratrice est excellente. j'ai cependant un léger goût de pas assez car il me semble que l'histoire est trop vite et trop facilement résolue. il y avait matière à faire un récit plus long et plus développé.