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The House of Long Shadows

House of Souls, Book 1
Written by: Ambrose Ibsen
Narrated by: Joe Hempel
Length: 8 hrs and 45 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The house at 889 Morgan Road has been empty almost 30 years. Maybe it should have stayed that way.

Kevin Taylor is an Internet-famous handyman on a mission: Find a house and renovate it in 30 days. By flipping a derelict house in a month's time and chronicling the entire thing on video for his online subscribers, he seeks to impress a handful of network TV producers and become a star.

The problems that plague this property will require more than elbow grease to fix, however.

Shadows throughout the home are distorted, and an enigmatic trespasser keeps showing up in his footage. Worse still are the hideous voices that issue from otherwise empty rooms in the dead of night. 

Amid mounting dangers, Kevin is forced to meet the house's shadowed past head-on - a past, he begins to suspect, he wants nothing to do with. Armed only with the hearsay of locals and the frightening clues he's uncovered within the home, he attempts to find out what led to the house's abandonment while juggling his strenuous renovation projects. 

What he uncovers is horrible beyond imagination. All signs seem to be pointing to one thing: 

Something in the house is awakening.

©2018 Ambrose Ibsen (P)2018 Ambrose Ibsen

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • T. Winter
  • 2018-06-20

Ghostly Home Improvement

The Ambrose Ibsen books Joe Hempel narrates are always by far the best. This one is right up there at the top. It's about an old, abandoned house a young man decides to rennovate on camera in a set of tutorials for his web channel. The house, of course, turns out to be haunted. The tale is genuinely scary, and the supernatural presence is very dark. There is absolutely no fault with the writing or narration, but I must warn that it isn't for the faint of heart. It isn't greusome, but some people will find it disturbing. Then again, if you scare easily, you really shouldn't be reading Ibsen.

The story isn't the standard haunted house fare, which is refreshing. I loved the video tutorial aspect, and hearing all the details of running a web channel gave a unique slant to the storyline that was surprisingly interesting. It reminded me somewhat of The Eaton by John Addis, except with Hempel narrating (so better). Joe Hempel is one of the reasons I listen to books instead of reading the print versions. He is absolutely one of my favorite narrators, and always adds something to the story.

Personally I wasn't fond of the ending (no spoilers though), but that's the way it goes I guess. If things had happened a bit differently in the last third of the book, I would have given everything five stars. Even so, it is definitely a winner.

I received this book for free at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

23 of 33 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • D. McCarty
  • 2019-06-01

Just okay...

Normally I LOVE Inben’s work, but this one left me wondering why he didn’t think of certain things. POSSIBLE SPOILER ALERT: It was like screaming ‘No don’t go back there’ over and over. It left me feeling the main character had no common sense. You’d think he would’ve brought some friends along or gotten the heck out of there much earlier in the story. Was also surprised there was no closure from coroner on Fiona. I don’t think I’ll follow up with Malific.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Donna Johnson
  • 2018-08-21

Dry

I could not finish this audiobook ! It was so flat, it seemed to go on & on never getting to anything exciting or scary! I tried twice to listen but just couldn’t get to the end.
Who knows, maybe the ending is the best part.

13 of 19 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Hillmc719
  • 2018-12-07

Entertaining with a surprising ending

I enjoyed this book. It was like some of my favorite things (home reno and ghosts) has a baby. I wouldn’t categorize this as your typical ghost story. I’d say it’s more demonic than ghosts. I also enjoyed the mystery aspect of the book. Whenever I read a ghost story I want to know the why and who. The protagonist investigated what’s going on in the house which I enjoyed. I agree with others that the narrator pronounced some words in an odd way, but I don’t feel it took away from the story. Lastly, the ending had me yelling “oh no!” in my car.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • B. Lane
  • 2018-11-21

It started when he bought the house....

Ambrose Ibsen is quickly becoming the Prince of Creepy! Handyman Kevin Taylor buys an old house hoping to renovate it in one weekend and chronicle the whole thing for his YouTube Channel to impress network execs and to flip the house quickly.

But the house has other things in mind....Kevin finds a skeleton hidden in a wall. A ghostly image keeps turning up on his videos, horrible voices are heard and more ghostly presences appear and disappear. Kevin tries to find out about the house's past, while still trying to keep on schedule with the renovations, but as the mysteries of the house are revealed, Kevin finds something horrible beyond imagination!

Ibsen knows how to creep you out when reading or listening to his books. But that is what keeps bringing me back. That and the fantastic narration by Joe Hempel, a narrator who has quickly taken over the genre and does a great job of narrating it. Always just the right amount of tension and humor, he embodies the characters.

If you are an Ibsen or Hempel fan, pick this one up and enjoy!

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

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Spooky Mike
  • 2018-05-09

DIY: Haunted Home Edition

Excited to start another series by Ambrose Ibsen with Joe Hempel narrating. After feeling cheated out of a story with In Absentia I’m glad to report that the start of this series is a complete story, has an ending that isn’t a huge cliff hanger, and is different than all of Ibsen’s other haunted house stories. The plot is very neat and having a wife who loves to watch home remodeling shows I’m always hoping for a dead body to be found during the demolition. This story is almost a home remolding show and paranormal investigative show hybrid. Really great idea and executed perfectly.

There really is only one character throughout this story, while a handful of other people pop in for a visit, this is mainly about Kevin. Kevin is a likeable character but I can’t say that I cared for him as much as I have some of Ibsen’s other characters. I appreciated why he was doing what he was doing and where he came from but another part of me was just thinking yeah dude life is hard, keep renovating that house. The character I actually liked the most was Mr Weiss. I liked his story and really liked how he handled everything.

Wasn’t really expecting the ending at all. Can’t say it was a twist, it was just not what I would have expected and I really enjoyed that. The haunts were good, not over the top but definitely different. I really enjoyed some of the descriptions. Can’t remember the exact wording but the description of a mouth opening like a marine predator sucking in food really brought a detailed image to my mind and it creeped me out quite a bit. Excited to see where the second one takes us.

As always Hempel does a great job and hope he continues to be the voice of Ibsen’s stories.

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

13 of 22 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Natalie @ ABookLoversLife
  • 2018-05-25

Ibsen at his best!

Kevin Taylor is a successful DIY you tuber. He is hoping to get his big break and buys a run down house for extremely cheap, renovating and flipping it in 30 days, in the hopes that a TV studio will pick him up. The house at 889 Morgan Road is the answer to his prayers! But this house has secrets and Kevin unknowingly lets something out that was trapped in it. Renovating the place is the least of his worries!!

I've read a lot of this authors books and I have to say that this is Ibsen at his best! This book was truly scary and incredibly creepy. The book started off with a slow build up of anticipation, that continued to build and build until I had to close the book for a little bit to give myself a breather. It was so well written that you could almost feel the tense feelings Kevin had. My heart was in my mouth at times and I kept thinking to myself that if it was me, I'd be long gone from the house!!

I loved Kevin. He was relatable and likable. He debates with himself about whether to leave the house or stay, which I think a lot of people would do. He just wants to make it big doing something he loves but he gets more than he bargains for. I also liked the fact that this really only features Kevin, there are a few other minor characters, but for the most part, it's only Kevin and it made me invest in his story more.

In all, this book was amazing. It's been a while since I was scared to read a book at night, and this one did just that!! While reading it, I heard a noise from my sons room, and knowing he wasn't in it, I texted my husband to come see what it was because I was too scared to go!!!

Joe Hempel was also amazing, as always!! I feel like he gets what the author wants and can bring the atmosphere to life! He knows how to capture the listener and transport them to the world the author created.

8 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2018-08-22

I found this book to be very boring

I found this book to be very boring. A lot of time spent on relating the protagonist's daddy issues and explaining construction stuff. I really did not get the scene with the cashier at the hardware store. To me, it really had nothing to do with the plot and could have been excluded. The ending was unexpected. I certainly did not see that coming. IDK if I found it so boring because of the narrator's monotone voice. Not the best book I've ever listed to, but not the worst either.

6 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Ginny Aybar-Flores
  • 2018-06-03

Must listen to.

Am not a big fan of these type of books, but this one caught my attention and held it throughout the story! Imagine buying a house to fix up and finding there are others there and not in the flesh! This audiobook will keep you listening to the end and what an ending it has! You want to scream "run away, get out of there!" The author did a great job with this novel and the narrator did a wonderful job narrating it. bravo to you both.

6 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • F.L.
  • 2018-08-26

The ending saves it

Boring, repetitive, I wanted to stop many times. I liked the end though, and that’s why I gave it an extra star.

8 of 15 people found this review helpful