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Extended Audio Sample A Stir of Echoes Audiobook, by Richard Matheson Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (3,869 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Richard Matheson Narrator: Scott Brick Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2009 ISBN: 9781455193011
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Tom Wallace lived an ordinary life, until a chance event awakened psychic abilities he never knew he possessed. Now, he’s hearing the private thoughts of the people around him—and learning shocking secrets he never wanted to know. But as Tom’s existence becomes a waking nightmare, even greater jolts are in store, as he becomes the unwilling recipient of a compelling message from beyond the grave.

This eerie ghost story, by the award-winning author of Hell House and I Am Legend, inspired the acclaimed 1999 film starring Kevin Bacon. Though originally published in the 1950s, its themes and ideas remain as fresh as if it were written today.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Perhaps no author living is as responsible for chilling a generation with tantalizing nightmare visions.”

    New York Times

  • “Matheson is the master of paranoia—pitting a single man against unknown horrors and examining his every slow twist in the wind.”

    San Jose Mercury News

  • “Scott Brick’s taut, urgent voice masterfully renders Matheson’s psychic thriller. When the skeptical Tom Wallace is hypnotized at a dinner party, he gains an uncanny power to see future events and becomes haunted by a dead woman. As his condition prophesizes more and more troubling events, his marriage and sanity start to unravel—which Brick mirrors in an increasingly desperate narration. Brick’s fevered whisper ratchets up the pressure until the stunning climax—in which it sounds as if Tom is truly possessed. Still startlingly fresh fifty years after its publication, A Stir of Echoes makes listeners believe that there’s much darkness in the world, even in the sunniest of Los Angeles suburbs. This audio production is far more eerie than the film.”

    AudioFile

  • “In 1958, Richard Matheson wrote one of the most harrowing descriptions of clairvoyance ever written, about an ordinary man who develops extraordinary powers enabling him to read minds and predict future events. This classic is now available on audio, and while it shows its age a bit, there is still enough of an audience for Matheson’s books—several of which have been adapted into movies, including this one—to recommend it. Audie Award winner Scott Brick does an outstanding job of delineating characters and giving the appropriate verbal jolt. Recommended for mystery fans and for libraries where budgets permit.”

    Library Journal

  • “I love a good ghost story, and this certainly is one…For narrator Scott Brick, this novel presented an opportunity for a great dramatic reading, and he delivers. There’s no doubt how Wallace is feeling, and it’s not always the words that tell us. Brick’s performance is stirring, and his intensity grows as Wallace’s grip loosens. A thoroughly entertaining production.”

    SFFAudio.com

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelly Jones | 2/17/2014

    " Thriller is one of my favorite genres of books! I was a Psychology major in college and absolutely love the classic Psychological Twist. This was the first Novel I had read by Richard Matheson. The book was a quick and easy read but very enjoyable. In any good Psychological thriller you have to convey your characters very well so that the plot line works out in your favor. Matheson certainly did a very good job of this. I was intrigued from the very beginning of the book which can be hard to do for some books. It also wasn't gory which can be hard for some people to handle and enjoy. The story is about a young couple living in the suburbs in the mid 1900s. Through a series of events the main character, Tom, begins to notice that he can hear people's thoughts and desires and can predict things before they happen. The subject of Psychic ability is a tricky one to write about without coming across as "cheesy" or "cliche" but in this book I would say it is handled pretty well. The story follows Tom and the people around him as he develops this ability and as he begins to get messages from a ghost? There are twists and turns and a mystery thrown in which in my opinion makes this book wonderful. I highly recommend it for anyone who enjoys a good mystery/twisty thriller. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michael | 2/14/2014

    " Entertaining. Tom Wallace is hypnotized by is brother in law and after coming out of it he finds that he has paranormal powers. He can see the future and hear people's thoughts. Chaos ensues. Matheson does a good job of capturing the emotion of the characters as they go through their trials. His characters seem real and it leads you to question what you would do in their shoes. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Phoenixangel444 | 1/30/2014

    " Although the book and movie were as different as night and day, they are both very good. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Casey | 1/27/2014

    " I wish the ending wasn't so abrupt but overall it was a great book! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Richard Ellis | 1/18/2014

    " Slightly abrupt ending ,but good until then !!. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jess | 1/12/2014

    " It's not so much that this story is terrible, as it is that the format seems so excessive. This would make a fine short story or campfire tale, but as a novel it begins to feel drawn out and tired. Skip it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dan Schwent | 1/8/2014

    " Matheson rarely fails to impress. Stir of Echoes is one of his novels that grabs you in the first couple of pages and holds your attention. All meat, no filler. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bjorn | 1/5/2014

    " I give this a 4.5 out of 5. I liked it a lot, but I felt like there was a somewhat veiled sexist tone that I didn't like. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tim Bax | 1/4/2014

    " Just a good old fashioned ghost story. Excellent. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Melissa | 12/17/2013

    " Interesting read; better than the movie. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kevin Lucia | 7/2/2013

    " Excellent. One of those rare cases in which I liked the movie for what it was, and the book, completely different, I liked, also. Not really a haunted house story, per se. More a form of ghost/supernatural phenomena story.. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jessartisan | 6/19/2013

    " I'm a big fan of the movie. The book is very different, but enjoyable in its own way. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mr. Shoemaker | 6/8/2013

    " Richard Matheson is the unsung father of the modern horror/supernatural novel. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tyler | 12/30/2012

    " Very chilling and suspenseful. This book solidified Matheson as one of my favorite authors. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kevin | 11/20/2012

    " Pretty good. But it was written in the 50's and is pretty dated. It's very much a book of a certain time and place. The people and neighborhood couldn't really exist today as they exist in the book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 A. R. | 11/18/2011

    " What's great is that the book is so much better than the movie (big surprise, huh?), and the film was fantastic. A whole new world of sensations open up to Tom, our protagonist, after he allows himself to be hypnotized. What a frightening concept! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rachel | 6/27/2011

    " Good, but sometimes jarringly inconsistent. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cyneva | 6/23/2011

    " This was a pretty good book, though I have to say that I enjoyed the movie a bit more. There were definitely some changes (different ghost, I think - and definitely a different killer). I appreciated that the writing didn't feel too dated, given the fact that this book was published around 1958. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Suzanne | 5/17/2011

    " Slim book, quick read, but I really enjoyed it. That's saying something, since I saw the movie years ago. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brittany | 4/7/2011

    " This novel made me a Mattheson fan, not exactly terrifying, but chilling and thought provoking to say the least. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stefano | 2/23/2011

    " The book is quite nice to read, Matheson's writing style is good as always.
    The plot suffers from years, so today it's not very original.
    Nevertheless, it has some interesting twists. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amy | 2/17/2011

    " This was an interesting tale and while not terrifying by today's standards (this was written in 1958) it is creepy and the ending was unexpected. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 1moongoddess | 2/13/2011

    " The storytelling was slowly paced but I was engaged by the story. This is one of the few books I've picked up that I would stay up late to keep reading. It's a different story than the film of the same name but this story is as compelling. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ann M | 2/10/2011

    " Good story -- a "page turner" but with clunky dialogue and dated characters. Maybe it was realistic in the 50s, I don't know. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Holly | 1/21/2011

    " Couldn't put it down! Read it in two days! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stargazer | 1/13/2011

    " Good wee snack of a book, be good for a 'travel' read on a train, plane, bus... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelsey | 11/21/2010

    " I've got to say that I'm becoming a fan of Richard Matheson. I've never seen this movie, but the book was great! He always has great twists at the end of his novels! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tim | 11/14/2010

    " Just a good old fashioned ghost story. Excellent. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cyneva | 8/31/2010

    " This was a pretty good book, though I have to say that I enjoyed the movie a bit more. There were definitely some changes (different ghost, I think - and definitely a different killer). I appreciated that the writing didn't feel too dated, given the fact that this book was published around 1958. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Suzanne | 8/15/2010

    " Slim book, quick read, but I really enjoyed it. That's saying something, since I saw the movie years ago. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Diana | 7/27/2010

    " This book was an excellent psychological horror, until the last chapter, when the effect is cheapened by a simplistic supernatural ending. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Blaise | 7/15/2010

    " It creeped me out at the beginning but wasn't really scary at all. I want to watch the movie again, though, to see how it compares. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Nicole | 7/9/2010

    " You know, I just don't think I'm a Matheson fan. I read Nightmare at 20,000 Feet, one other and now this. I like horror, but I don't feel the intensity in his story telling that I love. I'm not sure I'll bother with much more of his stuff... "

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About the Author
Author Richard Matheson

Richard Matheson (1926–2013) was born in New Jersey and started living and working in California in 1951. In addition to novels in the mystery, science fiction, horror, fantasy, and western fields, he wrote many film and television scripts, including “Nightmare at 20,000 Feet” from The Twilight Zone. He also wrote episodes of Have Gun, Will Travel, Night Gallery, and Star Trek. Several of his novels and stories have been made into movies, including The Shrinking Man, I Am Legend, and What Dreams May Come (starring Robin Williams). Over the course of his career he won the World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award, the Bram Stoker Award for Life Achievement, the Hugo Award, the Edgar Allan Poe Award, the Golden Spur Award, and the Writer’s Guild Award.

About the Narrator

Scott Brick, actor, narrator, and writer, attended UCLA and spent ten years in a traveling Shakespeare company. Passionate about the spoken word, he has narrated a wide variety of audiobooks, from thrillers and science fiction to classics and nonfiction. He has recorded more than eight hundred audiobooks and won over fifty AudioFile Earphones Awards and several of the prestigious Audie Awards. He was named a Golden Voice by AudioFile magazine and the Voice of Choice for 2016 by Booklist magazine.