So, given my previous Audiobook failure, I was leery for this new challenge of The Narrow Caves. However, the description of the story and the inclusion of Vincent D’Onofrio had me quite intrigued. I’m a sucker for D’Onofrio since his Law & Order days. (Also, he is pretty spectacular in Emerald City and pretty much everything else, ever.) The other casting surprise was Will Patton. I didn’t recognize the name fully, but the first moment he started narrating I was giddy. I kept waiting for him to make a crack about boosting cars, but I knew it wouldn’t happen. Either way, he was a delight to listen to. The rest of the cast was rounded out by Wyatt Russell and Lili Simmons, both who did a really great job. It wasn’t an audiobook, it was a play, and I really enjoyed it.
The story itself is a classic horror piece, complete with a slow first act and an explosive conclusion. It took me to about the hour mark to really get invested in the characters, but by the end of the story I was hooked. The build up, while slow, made sense and did give you that sense of foreboding which was spoken beautifully by Mr. Patton. The middle of the story which took place in a spooky house, with a eerie parent was enough to give my goosebumps, and the stuff in the caves, well, I don’t want to spoil that for you. I will say, however, that this is pretty much unlike anything I’ve ever read/heard/watched before, and for that alone I give this a 4.5 star rating.
It only loses that .5 rating for me, because stylistically, repeating “the gaunt man”, “the pale woman” and so on and so on was grating. It most definitely got on my nerves by the 15th time those descriptors were repeated. Other than that, this is a masterpiece in horror. It reminded me a lot of listening to the old Doctor Who radio shows, the feeling of being in the story, and being able to picture it however you want. I really, really enjoyed it.