Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Psycho by Robert Bloch (unabridged audio book read by Paul Michael Garcia)

Nearly everyone knows the story of Psycho, of how a woman named Crane steals $40,000 from her employer and takes off to marry her boyfriend. A rainstorm causes her to make a wrong turn off the main highway, and she stops for the night at the one beacon of light on that deserted stretch, the Bates Motel, run by the unassuming mama's boy Norman Bates.

Bates himself has become an iconic figure, synonymous with the psychotic murderer and more often the source of parody than fear. So, how does one approach the original novel by author Robert Bloch with a fresh eye?

Surprisingly, it is fairly simple: one cannot. If you have seen the classic film as directed by Alfred Hitchcock, you've experienced the story in its tightest form.

Hitchcock and screenwriter Joseph Stefano delivered a very faithful adaptation, and if that is enough for you, so be it. But if you long for more depth of character, more insight into motive and history, and especially more internal monologue, then Psycho the novel is just the thing for you.

Audiobook reader Paul Michael Garcia delivers a better performance than I thought possible, inhabiting all the characters fully. This allowed me to forget that I was listening to "Psycho" and just immerse myself in Bloch's world one more time — almost, if I tried really hard, as if for the first time.


David Cranmer said...

I always enjoy reading Mr. Bloch. One of the finest.

sanjistruelove said...

Robert Bloch is the best!!!!! LOVE him and his stories!!!!!!!!!!

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