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02 July 2012

Lullaby, Chuck Palahniuk (Audio Review)

Someone will download this audiobook because of my freakish exuberance and will think I've gone crazy. SO BE IT.

Guys, it is completely ridiculous. It is hauntingly weird. It is fantastic. But, this is not for everyone. 

This was AWESOME. Finally, people, I have come across an audiobook that I don't "just enjoy" but that I LOVE. And I loved both this crazy, crazy story and the narrator. Everything fell into place, and oh my, was I hooked.

Carl is a lonely widower in his forties. As a reporter, he starts writing an article for the newspaper he works at about the sad topic of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. A curious link to a poem, either sung or spoken, to children before they go to bed is uncovered and is the only common event for all of the deaths he's researching. The only problem is that it's not an innocent poem at all; in fact, it's actually a tribal death chant.

Carl and a real estate agent named Helen, her secretary Mona, and Mona's boyfriend known as Oyster, go on a quest to pull all of the books that have this lullaby in it and rip the pages from the books. It's their way to save the world, and for Carl especially, a way to overcome the death of his own wife and daughter. As Carl goes through the process to find each and every single copy, he has to stop himself from using this on people he doesn't like. He knows he needs help when he's beginning to wildly wield it on not just enemies, but on random, innocent people. He certainly didn't realize that along this insane path, he might actually come to terms with the horrible things in life, and maybe, just maybe, fall in love.

I'll go over my thoughts on the narrator below, but let's just say he is AWESOME for this story. I couldn't stop listening to it and I got pretty ticked off when I had to pause it.

At the heart of this story is just a lonely man who has an inordinate amount of pain and suffering in his life that he's experienced, as are the people he teams up with to track the whereabouts of the poem in every part of the country. But, it's not just what's at the heart of this that makes it so unique, it's the entire story, the peculiar method of storytelling, the characters that could be loyal or maybe not. Lullaby is certainly not for the faint of heart in several scenes, but it certainly is memorable. What a sad story wrapped up in creativity.

This is my very first time with a Chuck Palahniuk story and it will absolutely not be my last. I have this sneaking suspicion that his books might be even more fantastic in audio; I can assure you this one certainly is. It is odd, unique, filthy, ridiculous, hilarious, and heart-wrenching. And it is WEIRD. If you are a fan of straight-forward stories that don't have creatively uncomfortable and odd ways of telling the story (with a dash of crudeness), then this may not be for you. However, if you want to try something a little different and don't mind a little bit of contemptibility in some of the characters' actions and events, than oh my, pick this one!

Audio Notes: As I've already gushed, Richard Poe ROCKED. This was like some fantastic stage play come to life for audio only. His voice is smooth and he easily voiced the emotions so effectively that in the earlier spots when there was a considerable amount of heartbreak and sadness over his personal losses, my heart felt the character's pain. Richard Poe's breathing, his enunciation for certain feelings, was just PERFECT. I am a brand-new fan of his. Look at me! I'm downloading all of the audiobooks he's narrated! You know what I wish? I wish that has the ability to "favorite" a narrator, so that way when a new audio comes out that they narrate, you'd get an alert letting you know. Isn't that a great idea? Do they do this already? If they don't, this is my idea!

Oh, yeah, click here for the sample from

Publisher: Recorded Books
Release Date: 01/17/05
Audio Time: 7 hours, 15 minutes
Narrator: Richard Poe

FTC Disclosure: I purchased this audio from

About the Author
Chuck Palahniuk is most immediately known for his popular book Fight Club, which some guy named Brad Pitt starred in back in the 1990s. It was an awesome story on film, so I can only imagine what it's like to read it.

Visit the author:


  1. I've heard so many people rave about Palahniuk's work so I listened to one of his books and have to admit that I just didn't get it. I'm hesitant to try his work again - I'm probably just not smart enough for it.

    1. No, I think I'm just weird! For me, I'm certain it was a combo of the odd story and the narrator :)

  2. WOW! That's quite an endorsement! I have an audible credit burning a hole in my pocket -- this sounds like it might be a winner!

    1. Ok, now keep in mind my first paragraph that you may think I'm crazy when you listen to this one :) I hope you enjoy it if you do listen to it!

  3. I have read one Pahalniuk book (Choke) and I wasn't fond of it. I hate to write off an author after one book though so I do want to give him another chance!

    1. I've heard a lot about Choke; I know it's not for queasy stomachs, that's for sure! I still can't figure out WHY I liked this story so much, but I just did. It was so bizarre and different than anything I've listened to lately, and the narrator was divine! (At least, for me). As I mentioned in the post and in an above comment, you may think I'm crazy if you download this, but I do hope you enjoy!

  4. I'll have to recommend this to my son. He LOVED Fight Club and really got into this author's style. I'm very curious about this one myself.

    1. I am so ready to get Fight Club. I put it off for years because, while I thought the movie was pretty intense and awesome, I just didn't want the book's characters to play out as I read the book. Ah, who cares?! I'm totally going to have to pick it up right away! No excuses!

  5. I've read two Palahniuk books, and they were just bizarre. If I were to ever go for a third (doubtful, though) I'd definitely listen.

  6. I have watched and read Fight Club, I have this one on my Wishlist to try, weird and intoxicating in a good way, I get that Natalie, lol

    Even though I have to say Fight Club movie was Amazing, in my mind better. I look forward to trying Lullaby, but I will read it, I can't get into audio.

  7. I love your exuberance for this book!!! I know how the right voice, and an audio book, can make a book you might not normally rave about wonderful. That happened to me with Room, a book I didn't plan on reading due to the disturbing subject, but ended up as one of my favorites for the year so far. Thanks for the heads up on this one. And, I'll never think any ill toward you. ;) xoxo

  8. YAY! For the weird. Yay, yay! Really enjoyed this one, and I think I would find his books more entertaining on audio.

  9. I think it's nice every once in a while to find a real novel that doesn't follow all the preset rules and formulas. I'm gonna give this one a try :)


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