Read by Nick Podehl
Length: 14 Hrs 54 Min
Genre: Comedic Horror
Quick Thoughts: This Book is Full of Spiders is just pure fun for any fan of horror fiction, full of adventure, plenty of creepy scares, monsters, shadowy government types, weird otherworldly weapons, slapstick irreverent humor and of course, a good dog and an even better woman. Fans of John Dies at the End will love this latest adventure with their buddies David and John, and if you have yet to spend time with this duo, go do it now. You’ll thank me.
So, before you start reading this audiobook review, I want to assure you that This Book is Full of Spiders by David Wong is not a zombie book. I promise you. Now, you may hear things, people alluding to a zombiesque nature to this book. Don’t worry about these rumors, they are wrong. This is not a zombie book. Sure, I know many of you come here looking for exactly that, audiobook reviews about Zombie novels. I know I have provided the zombie loving public with plenty of reviews of zombies in their literary and audible form over the two year existence of this blog, but this isn’t one. I love zombie novels, but let’s be frank, they are a made up ridiculous creature. A lot of authors have done a wonderful job creating realistic almost scientific reasons for their zombies, but let’s face it, they are monsters of myth, nothing more. Any scientific explanation just pushes credibility. Now, it’s possible that you could pitch me a story about some virus that reanimates dead humans. or some disease that causes humans to become ultra violent and unstable in a realistic way, but I have trouble believing anything could reanimate the dead, turning them into violent eaters of human flesh who can only be stopped by causing major damage to their brains. It’s ridiculous, and This Book is Full of Spiders is terrifying, full of adventure, and even a bit romantic, but it is not ridiculous. This Book is Full of Spiders is a tale of two friends who find themselves pulled into strange situations. This book is about how far people who love each other will go to keep each other safe. This book is about deep conspiracies, government corruption, and what happens when the public gives into mass fear. Yet, most importantly, this book is about spider like parasites that get into humans and change them into something different, including hyper violent creatures that eat other humans. This book is not about zombies. That would be ridiculous.
If you have yet to experience the cultural phenomenon that is John Dies at the End, go do it now. Don’t worry, I’ll wait. I was actually pretty late to that party myself, but eventually got my hands on the AudioGo audiobook production, and loved every minute of it. I encourage people to experience this book, before the movie version gets its wider release. My prediction on the movie is that it will be one of the cult hits that all the cool kids will be talking about for years, just like the book. Now that that is taken care of, let’s move onto David Wong’s follow up to John Dies at the End, called This Book is Full of Spiders: Seriously Dude, Don’t Pick it Up. I have to say, I was a bit skeptical of This Book is Full of Spiders. John Dies at the End was such a unique, madcap novel told in this sort of avant garde, unreliable narrative style that I wondered if Wong could pull it off in the sequel, without it feeling like a bad retread. Well, let me assure you, from the first moments of This Book is Full of Spiders, I was sold. The novel itself isn’t a retread of John Dies at the End, yet, more of an expansion of the style. The way Wong set the story up, and how each little quirk of the book comes with a big payoff, made me want to go and listen to it again after I was completed. For a book that is full of all sorts of craziness, uproarious comedy, over the top characters, and a scenario that just pushed every boundary of the modern horror outbreak trope, the meticulousness of the plot is simply amazing. Wong does things throughout the book that you see as the author just trying to infuse the story with even more craziness and color, yet, by the end of the novel it all comes together. The main thing you must take away from this review is that This Book is Full of Spiders is just pure fun for any fan of horror fiction. I don’t even know how to describe it beyond that. It is what the sequel to Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure should have been, pure fun adventure, plenty of creepy scares, monsters, shadowy government types, weird otherworldly weapons, slapstick irreverent humor and of course, a good dog and an even better woman. Fans of John Dies at the End will love this latest adventure with their buddies David and John, and if you have yet to spend time with this duo, go do it now. You’ll thank me.
It’s always sad when they change narrators in books, especially with Stephen R. Thorne’s wonderful performance in John Dies at the End, but, if you’re going to switch, you can’t do much better than Nick Podehl. Podehl easily accomplishes the most important task of this audiobook, capturing the narrative voice of David Wong. It’s very important for the style of this novel for it to come off as if David Wong is himself telling you the story. Without that, the jokes would fall flat, and the effectiveness of the twists would be blunted. Podehl captures Wong’s voice wonderfully, and combined that with a keen sense of comic timing, really enhanced the experience of this book with his reading. This is one of the novels that really translates to audio seamlessly, and I could even argue that due to the style of the book, audio may actually be the better format for this novel. Brilliance does a wonderful job with this production. Podehl read the novel with just the right amount of restraint. This was key, because I believe that with such an over the top book, the payoff is stronger with a restrained reading. Podehl captures each characters essence, and it all comes together in a way that seems believable. This Book is Full of Spiders is definitely destined to grace a high spot on my end of the year audiobook favorites list.