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Found Audio

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  466 ratings  ·  95 reviews
Amrapali Anna Singh is an historian and analyst capable of discerning the most cryptic and trivial details from audio recordings. One day, a mysterious man appears at her office in Dutch Harbor, Alaska, having traveled a great distance to bring her three Type IV audio cassettes that bear the stamp of a library in Buenos Aires that may or may not exist.

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Paperback, 170 pages
Published July 11th 2017 by Two Dollar Radio
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Average rating 3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  466 ratings  ·  95 reviews

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David Katzman
Admittedly, I'm way behind on writing reviews...but this book just didn't really stay with me. I was captivated by the style more than anything. It had a unique formal opening (an epistle written by an academic). And then thereafter became the transcript of an audio recording that the academic had transcribed. The audio recording was a long interview with a man telling a story about his life centered around inexplicable occurrences and a mythical "city of dreams."

The academic was an
Julianne (Outlandish Lit)
Oh my goodness, this was such a fun read. I really can't help but love stories within stories. So basically, a mysterious man approaches an audio analyst with some tapes. He gives her a huge amount of money to transcribe them and learn what she can from them. She is explicitly told not to share this transcript with anybody. But, of course, she does and then she vanishes. All of this happens within the introduction, I swear I'm not spoiling anything. The vast majority of the book is the transcrip ...more
Mattia Ravasi
Aug 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Video review:

House of Leaves sans the fear and quirks, via Lovecraft's dreamiest tales. On paper, it's perfect, and in fact there's lots to love here; some features of the novel (most notably the whole this-is-not-fiction effect) are a bit wobbly, but it's fast paced and keeps you turning pages. Can't wait to read Mr. Campbell's next effort.
Danny Caine
Feb 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Late in N.J. Campbell’s debut novel Found Audio, the narrator states, “weird is common, in a way.” The declaration is a thesis for this compelling, multi-layered novel that follows an unnamed adventure-journalist as he globetrots in search of the unexplained. We only hear from this adventurer via mysterious audiotapes, delivered by a strange man to a reclusive audio engineer. The engineer transcribes the tapes, and sends them to a lowly intern who’s then tasked with publishing the manuscript—pre ...more
Feb 27, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really disliked this book, I find no purpose for it and it was also boring . I kept expecting for a twist somewhere and that the story would take off from there but it never came , what we got is someone (we don’t know who) searching for a “city of dreams “ that might or might not exist, interviewing people who might or might not be real . Yep . Read at your own risk .
Matthew Burris
Feb 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Adventure journalism meets magical realism. The forensic audio ads another weird/interesting layer. Cinematic and quick. Recommended.
Jan 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this. I have to admit the transcriber’s letter up front almost turned me off completely, but I figured I’d keep reading until I got to the actual transcripts, which were really interesting.

This isn’t the type of book I normally read, but I was really fascinated by the protagonist’s search for deeper meaning, and the places this search took him.

I felt like I was traveling around the globe with this guy as he explained his pursuit of knowledge, and the pursuit itself
I had really high hopes for this book, but it fell very, very short for me. The idea was interesting, and I spent the first half of the book eagerly waiting for a twist or some action that was clearly just around the corner in this dreamscape of a novel. But once it became clear that there was nothing coming, that it really was essentially someone talking about his maybe/maybe not dreams (which, let's admit it, no one ever cares to hear about other people's dreams, much less read an entire book ...more
Oct 11, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: experimental
N.J. Campbell takes us around the world and through fascinating adventures in this short novel, where the main character tries to untangle himself from a mystery of a lost city.

Great concept, with some parts executed better than others. The overwhelming mystery of the story was fun, and the metafictional aspects were done well, but overall I needed more information about what was going on before I could really get into it. The short length also robbed us of a chance to really meet ma
Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: this-looks-weird
I sat down to start this book, and suddenly it was three hours later, and the book was done, and I felt like a had a gaping hole in my head where my brain should have been.
This book was very weird, and sort of read like the ocean, in that things kept coming at me in waves, and I couldn't stop reading, but I was never totally sure what would happen next or even what I was reading, and suddenly it ended and i wanted way more, and wasn't quite sure if my world was the same or not. And it was
Pop Bop
Jul 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
Are You the Dreamer, or Are You the Dream?

If you are intrigued by this book, and you rightly should be, you should know what you're getting into. Here goes. (These are sort of structure and premise SPOILERS if you are sensitive to that, but not much more than the book's blurbs give away.)

We have at least three pieces in this Matryoshka, (Russian nesting doll). First, there is a mysterious frame that adds a touch of paranoia and suspense. It's really just an atmospheric ge
Jack Wolfe
Look at that cover! Read that inside flap! See that Two Dollar Radio imprint? You are intrigued, yes?

I hesitate to be to hard on this book, which is clearly a personal work by a young writer published by an (awesome, Columbus-based) independent press, but it was pretty disappointing. It promises a mindfuck and gives you... Well, a lot of stock dream material. A big sticking point for me was the prose style. The majority of the book is a "transcription" of a series of mysterious tapes
Matt Glaviano
Sep 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, 2017
A surprisingly engaging metafiction puzzle of a book.

I ran across this randomly as being review on the Columbus Metropolitan Library's homepage. Intrigued by title and cover art, I was further enticed enough by its short length to request a copy. Little did I know that Two Dollar Radio -- the publisher -- is a Columbus based company.

The layered narrative of the book instantly appealed to me, and the narrative included on the cassettes themselves was endlessly changing --
Marilyn B
I finished this a bit ago and yet I’m still not sure what my ultimate thoughts are. I greatly enjoy the unique voice of this book - it’s mostly all told from a one person dialogue - and for awhile I really thought the strangeness of the story was appealing. However, I soon came to realize that this story was meandering and seemingly without a point...which may have been the point...except I could hardly care by the time I realized that. The epilogue was really the best part of the book for me. I ...more
Corey Constable
Jul 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I grabbed this book for its title (I'm an audio nerd) but stayed for its premise. The writing is tight and economical, and its presentation is so well done. I'm hoping this will be turned into an audiodrama, and I have half a mind to ask Campbell if he'll let me produce it. This story begs to be made into audio format.
Cade Turner-Mann

A fantastic piece that burns slowly in the spaces around the action. Hypnotic and surreal. Elements of Murakami's magical realism (a la Dance Dance Dance). Fans of this should also read Shaun Prescott's The Town.
Aug 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: long-excellent
Read this in one sitting. Found Audio is mysterious and unsettling and amazing, containing all of my favorite things into one book. I need twelve more like it, please.
Aug 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really fun and imaginative- not like anything else - it has the courage of its indeterminacy.
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reading the metafictional Found Audio is akin to diving down an internet message board rabbit hole, seeking answers about an elusive urban legend. Sure, it left me with questions that I may just be able to shrug off tomorrow (despite some of the book's deeper existential elements), but the important part is that for the brief time I was "in" it, I found it completely engrossing and intriguing, even fun. 4.5/5.
Jan 17, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
When I was in high school, a friend of mine came home from college to work on his student film. Basically, a bunch of us had to pretend to dance slowly and artily in a room until the main character came in and asked "who are you?" Then, we all replied in a SUPER ARTSY, MIND-BLOWING monotone: "we are you."

That's basically this.


So here's what I mean. The general framing device -- mysterious tapes, confusing background noises, disappearances! -- is 100% up my
Mark Schlatter
Aug 16, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: shreve, new_book_area
Did not like this one bit, and probably wouldn't have finished it if it wasn't so short. Yes, it's weird fiction, but nowhere close to (say) Jeff VanderMeer or China Miéville. Most of the book consists of transcriptions of audio tapes, even though the prose style seems at times distinctly non-verbal. The "grand mystery" has very little depth, and there's a huge reliance on people of color to provide spiritual insight, mysticism, and enigmas galore.
Bill Hsu
Aug 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this. It checks off a number of items on my list of obsessions (mysterious audio recordings! unresolved dream-like sequences! ominous disappearances! etc) I hate to grumble in a 4-star review, but artifacts from the cassette transcription are only inserted occasionally into the narrative; I would have made them more crucial and disruptive elements.
Amy Michelle
Found Audio is a unique work of fiction presented to the reader as the transcripts to audio cassettes as written by Amrapali Anna Singh. The cassettes were delivered to her under curious circumstances, curiouser still is the content of these cassettes, and the experiences described therein. I found myself staying up late into the night to finish this book, and quickly counted it among my favorite reads.
Apr 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So compelling. So fun. Also thoughtful and not disappointing!
Nov 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A slippery, dreamy paradox. It somehow feels not quite substantial enough, but I was totally in the mood for this type of strange storytelling, so I’m going with 4 stars on this one.
John Pistelli
"Who is the Biblioteca Nacional de Investigación de Buenos Aires?"

I can tell you without in any way spoiling N. J. Campbell's Found Audio that this is the novel's final sentence. It is an odd question on two grounds. First, there is no such institution, as far as I can discern—the official name of Argentina's national library would appear to be La Biblioteca Nacional de la República Argentina. Second, "who" is the wrong part of speech: who—that is, what person—could possibly be a research library? But let me not belabo
Marina Browning
Sep 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reminds me a lot of VanderMeer’s writing. The suggestion of something more, letting you use your own imagination to fill the gaps. Very interesting story!!
Nov 16, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This could maybe be a 2-star review for the intriguing parts at the beginning, but I came away with a solid feeling of dislike. There just isn't enough payoff to the "mystery" to satisfy me, and the mystery itself was not really what I was hoping for. I was kind of anticipating something more like Annihilation, where my skin was creeping with horror and I couldn't put it down. In Found Audio, nothing on the tapes really spoke to me as being out of this world, and (view spoiler) ...more
Jul 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The very notions of time and memory and consciousness, or what it means to know one is "living," are questioning throughout N.J. Campbell's debut. A strange series of tales told by a singular narrator, this book works to show the reader his own time and it's connectedness to the time and questions that have come before and will surely come after. Are we awake and living or are we dreaming and does it matter which?
Jul 04, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: reviewed, 2018
This really did nothing for me. Nonexistent characterization with an intriguing premise that never pays off or amounts to anything. Kind of a waste of time, really.
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N.J. Campbell was born in the Midwest. He has won the Little Tokyo Short Story Contest, received accolades from the California State Legislature, and has been anthologized in the collection American Fiction from New Rivers Press. Found Audio is his first novel.
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“You bein' here reminds me a deese things. You here searchin' reminds me a dat way. Dat kind of man who wants to see the soul of another man's world without buyin' da hardships dat come wit dat kind of understandin'.” 0 likes
“I remember I asked her, "What does one do if they're crazy?"
And, for whatever reason, she said, "What does one do if they're not?”
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