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Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of Fear collected by Roald Dahl, read by Julian Rhind-Tutt, Kevin Eldon, Tom Felton and Rory Kinnear. An audio collection of deliciously dark ghost stories for adults, picked by Roald Dahl himself....

Do you enjoy being scared? Featuring 14 classic spine-chilling stories chosen by Roald Dahl, these terrible tales of ghostly goings-on will have you shivering with fear as you listen.

They include such timeless and haunting stories as Sheridan Le Fanu's 'The Ghost of a Hand', Edith Wharton's 'Afterward', Cynthia Asquith's 'The Corner Shop' and Mary Treadgold's 'The Telephone'.

Roald Dahl reveals even more about the darker side of human nature in seven other centenary editions featuring his own stories: Lust, Madness, Cruelty, Deception, Trickery, Innocence and War.

Full list of authors includes Rosemary Timperley, E. F. Benson, Jonas Lie, A. M. Burrage, Robert Aickman, Richard Middleton, and F. Marion Crawford.

©2017 Roald Dahl (P)2017 Penguin Random House

What listeners say about Fear

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Goosebumps

Some genuinely creepy moments here -especially a couple of stories from the experts who knew how effective a slow build up can be. One of the things I liked best about this collection is that it features locations normally neglected in the genre - on board a ship for example - and interesting personalities, fully developed. A cold guardian and a damaged young girl are both transformed by a lengthy haunting. A loving but blinkered wife is brought to a new understanding of her husband's personality by an unexpected visitation.

And if you've seen American Werewolf in London, you'll know that dread and laughter are a dream ticket. In one story in particular, the description of the tremendous resentment demonstrated by a maid subjected to reasonable questioning by her mistress had me laughing, despite the sinister events which occasioned the interrogation.

Although most of the stories are set during the genre's golden age (the Victorian and Edwardian eras) the collection contains examples of what is still everyday contemporary horror too - as, for example, when a loved one walks through a door into the great silence, a mystery with no resolution. These authors know that leaving a certain amount up to the reader's own imagination - refusing to explain everything - is an effective way of magnifying dread. A picture on the side of a milk carton can represent the greatest horror of all, when you think about it.

12 people found this helpful

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Good collection of stories, well narrated

Well done, Roald Dahl for putting together this collection. A treat to find a well written and narrated set of stories with a hint of the supernatural. Not something you come across often.

7 people found this helpful

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Absolutely classic

A wonderful collection of classic ghost stories, well chosen (by a master) and very well read. these are NOT bedtime stories :-)

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Boring

The narration was boring, the stories were boring and not fearful at all. Too many long words in some of the stories. Very disappointed

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The Six Weird Roads Of Death

Famously drawn from a long-list of 749 stories, these 14 ghostly tales reflect the best of spooky short fiction as viewed by curator, Roald Dahl. No stranger to a rum yarn, Dahl's choices range from late Victorian through to the 1960s, with the emphasis firmly on slow suspense and atmospheric chills. Amongst the authors selected here are some big guns of the classic Ghost Story format, but it's a selection notable for it's omissions as much as anything else (no room at the inn for Monty? And surely some Shirley would have been fitting?); frankly, even some of the efforts from the ghoulish glitterati are hardly their best (Sheridan Le Fanu's 'The Ghost Of A Hand' is terrible, whilst E.F. Benson's 'In The Tube' is a decent story strangled at birth by it's own speculative cod-philosophising). Interestingly, many of the stories feature ambiguous or diffident apparitions ('Afterward'; 'On The Brighton Road'; 'A Christmas Meeting'; 'The Telephone') and two of the stronger stories here (Cynthia Asquith's 'The Corner Shop' and A.M. Burrage's 'Playmates') are haunted by benign presences. I suspect a key criteria of Dahl's selections was how easily these stories would be adaptable to television.
For good, old-fashioned malignancy, the most potent pieces are F. Marion Crawford's 'The Upper Berth' and Rosemary Timperley's 'Harry'. Elsewhere, 'Elias and the Draug' by Jonas Lie is a creditable attempt to broaden the remit and move further afield (Norway, in this instance), but it is an unfortunately dull tale. Best in show, by some distance, is Robert Aickman's eerie and enigmatic 'Ringing The Changes'; easily highlight of the set for me.
Of the narration, it's a pretty good bunch: Tom Felton is okay; Rory Kinnear puts in stout work and lifts some of the more middling tales; and Julian Rhind-Tutt's dry, haughty voice is always a supercilious pleasure. Kevin Eldon is the revelation for me; I'd only known him from his oddball comedy roles but he has a wonderful voice for audiobooks, rather like Robert Hardy: ideal for golden age detective fiction or classic ghost stories, which is handy here...


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Ok. Not a bad collection.

As story collection go, id say this is one of the better. Worth a go.

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Poor stories that don't grip you

Very poor selection of stories. Not worth bothering with. Narrators were good though only real plus unfortunately

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tom
  • 20-06-19

kinda nice

but basically the stories are not as good as roald dahl's own weird or uncanny stories. dahl became the children's books author whose books thrilled kids in books and equally excited kids when they were made into fims -- "matilda" and "the witches" and many more. he also wrote enjoyable memoirs basically aimed at an adult readership. and the "tales of the unexpected" of his earlier career. so he must have seemed like the perfect editor for a compilation of writers in a similar vein. there actually were quite a few writers of pretty similar and similarly good stories as dahl's own who were contemporaries of his in the 50s and 60s. dahl seems to have completely neglected every one of those writers, and instead opted for a previous generation of writers -- who produved writing that would have required a good deal of editorial work, of cropping and shortening to make it palatable for today's readers. penguin books in england once printed a massively shortened version of sheridan le fanu's "uncle silas" which was infinitely superior to the original novel in its unwieldy shape. much the same could be said for le fanu's "short" stories, and most of the authors gathered here. it was a job dahl left undone. so his editorship feels a little vacuous, fluttering like a flag -- a slightly "false" flag -- over this collection. dahl's collections of his own stories offer a much more rewarding experience, althouph perhaps not of "fear". unsettling, yes. pleasurably weird, that too....

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  • Steven V. Turner
  • 15-12-17

Classic horror

Great classic horror stories from classic horror authors, read by excellent performers. I enjoyed every minute.