Audiobook Review: Tooth and Nail by Craig DiLouie

3 02 2011

Tooth and Nail by Craig DiLouie

Read By Steve Cooper

Books In Motion

Genre: Zombie Apocalypse

Quick Thoughts: Bad Narration and stilted unrealistic dialogue makes this a tough listen.

Grade: C-


I am not a great writer, nor was I ever a master of literary critique. I tend to base my reviews on my enjoyment and impression of the book or audiobook. It doesn’t mean that it’s a bad book or poorly written, it just means that in my meager opinion, I just didn’t enjoy it. It’s almost on par with an emotional response, and because of that, I dislike giving overly critical reviews. I decided to listen to Craig DiLouie’s Tooth and Nail, based solely on the fact it was an apocalyptic zombie book. I usually love those types of novels. ZA Rect’s Morningstar novels, and JL Bourne’s Day by Day Armageddon series are good examples. So, I hoped to get a similar thrill from Tooth and Nail.

I didn’t. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but there was just something off about the book. Overall, the story, about a Military Unit battling Zombies in New York City, was fine, interesting enough to get me all the way through the 10 hour production. Yet, unfortunately there were issues that kept me from fully engaging with the story. The dialogue was stilted and unrealistic sounding, there was an overuse of repetitive military slang and slogans making every character seem like the same cardboard cutout, and the weird shifts in perspective and use of the third person present tense, just made the book seem, well… off.

Sometimes weird dialogue can be saved by a good narrator, but here, I believe things were made worst by the robotic reading by Steve Cooper. Cooper has a “…meanwhile at the Hall of Justice” type voice which probably would do well to tell me what movies were going to be a “thrill ride” but for a full length production, just came off this side of grating. His characters were better, but still most sounded pretty much the same, which made it hard to connect, and even differentiate characters. Overall, there was just enough in this book, where with a better reader, I would be willing to listen to sequel.