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Extended Audio Sample The Terror: A Novel, by Dan Simmons Click for printable size audiobook cover
4.5 out of 54.5 out of 54.5 out of 54.5 out of 54.5 out of 5 4.50 (2 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Dan Simmons Narrator: Simon Vanc Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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The men on board HMS Terror have every expectation of triumph. As part of the 1845 Franklin Expedition, the first steam-powered vessels ever to search for the legendary Northwest Passage, they are as scientifically supported an enterprise as has ever set forth. However, as they enter a second summer in the Arctic Circle without a thaw, they are stranded in a nightmarish landscape of encroaching ice and darkness.

Endlessly cold, with diminishing rations, 126 men fight to survive with poisonous food, a dwindling supply of coal, and ships buckling in the grip of crushing ice. But their real enemy is far more terrifying. There is something out there in the frigid darkness: an unseen predator stalking their ship, a monstrous terror constantly clawing to get in. When the expedition’s leader, Sir John Franklin, meets a terrible death, Captain Francis Crozier takes command and leads his surviving crewmen on a last, desperate attempt to flee south across the ice. With them travels an Inuit woman who cannot speak and who may be the key to survival—or the harbinger of their deaths. But as another winter approaches, as scurvy and starvation grow more terrible, and as the terror on the ice stalks them southward, Crozier and his men begin to fear that there is no escape.

The Terror swells with the heart-stopping suspense and heroic adventure that have won Dan Simmons praise as “a writer who not only makes big promises but keeps them” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer). With a haunting and constantly surprising story based on actual historical events, The Terror is a novel that will chill you to your core.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Simmons, an accomplished writer of horror and sci fi, is predictable adroit in his deployment of terror, but the greatest pleasure of the novel lies in the sharp and sympathetic portrayals of Captain Francis Crozier, who assumes command of the expedition after Franklin’s death, and Dr. Harry Goodsir, the mild yet determined ship’s physician.”

    New Yorker

  • “Dan Simmons does not need comparison with anybody else. He is very much his own man, and now with this chilling—in every way—thriller, he is set to break big.”

    New York Daily News

  • The Terror is both dazzling history and a sparkling chiller.”


  • “Brutal, relentless, yet oddly uplifting, The Terror is a masterfully chilling work.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • The Terror makes some keen observations about man and nature, civilization and savagery.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “First-rate historical fiction.”


  • The Terror is the sort of rich, character- and plot-driven novel that provides thrills while fulfilling the desire for a substantial, intellectually satisfying read.”

    Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

  • A 2008British Fantasy Award Nominee
  • A 2007Bram Stoker Award Nominee
  • A 2008Audie Award Finalist
  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award
  • Winner of the 2008International Horror Guild Award

Listener Opinions

  • 4.333333 out of 54.333333 out of 54.333333 out of 54.333333 out of 54.333333 out of 5 by Larry | 8/14/2016

    " I thought this story, mixing historical events with a wonderful story was very, very good. The story flowed nicely and did not get lost in sidebars that only seem to lengthen some of the more recent novels for no apparent reason. Highly recommend. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Markt5660 | 6/14/2011

    " A really interesting alternative story of what happened to the Franklin expedition. A little too "out there" to be called historical fiction but a nice historical tie-in nonetheless. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Carter | 6/4/2011

    " Excellent nautical historical fiction with a supernatural twist. Brrrrrr....I never want to be cold again. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Mindy | 5/28/2011

    " One of the most terrifying (no pun intended) books I've ever read. Not only is it historical fiction, depicting the slow starvation of Sir John Franklin's expedition in search of the Northwest Passage, but Simmons also adds a touch of the supernatural. "

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