The Conception of Terror: Tales Inspired by M.R. James
Publisher: Audible Studios (February 7, 2019)
Do you listen to podcasts? I've heard of them, but have never tried one. I admit that I thought this was a regular audio book when I purchased it. But it is actually a collection of produced podcast horror stories. Spooky suspenseful music and all. I needed something to get me into that Halloween season feeling, and this was perfect!
The collection includes the following stories:
Casting the Runes - adapted by Stephen Gallagher
Jo is sent an academic paper to review, and writes a scything critique of the quack sorcery written by Anton Karswell. When her boss inadvertently tells Karswell who wrote the critique, he goes about using his extensive knowledge of the occult to get back at Jo.
Lost Hearts - adapted by A. K. Benedict
Stephanie is at the last foster home that will take her, after a long string of failed attempts to find her a home. Aswarby house seems amazing on the surface, but when kids go missing, she finds a sinister purpose behind the community.
The Treasure of Abbot-Thomas - adapted by Jonathan Barnes
Mika takes a job as the head history professor at a school. When an ex professor dies, she is asked to be the school's presence at the memorial. There, she meets Abbot Thomas's former pupil, Greg. Greg has been having dreams since his ex professor died of the treasure hunts they had when he was a pupil, and ropes Mika in to his search for what he believes to be Thomas's fortune. But Abbot Thomas has one last trick up his sleeve.
A View from a Hill - adapted by Mark Morris
Paul and Sarah have suffered the loss of their child. Six months after, they attempt to take a vacation to get away from it all. But on a hike in the local forest, they come upon the ruins of an abbey, and Sarah believes she hears the voice of her dead son. But is it her son, or is it the ghosts of the monks who were murdered at the abbey?
I really liked most of the production, the eerie music and multi-character dialogue really added to the experience. But being an audio book listener and not a podcast listener, I did miss the thoughts of the characters, and some of the pauses where the characters are doing something left me a little confused - I couldn't place the sound of what they were supposed to be doing, I'm honestly used to being READ what the characters are doing.
Of course if you are a regular podcast listener you will be used to this. I liked the first story the best, it was the most detailed and explained all of the occult occurrences behind it. The other stories were good as well, all spooky and creepy but not gruesome. Just the kind of horror I like.
3.5/5, I liked it but won't listen to it again, because the suspense will be ruined by knowing what happens next!