How can one damned handyman keep all of hell running when everything's always breaking, devils and demons plot against him...and he's terrible at fixing things?
Steve is hell's super, its handyman. Being Mr. Fixit to the underworld keeps him and his assistant, Orson Welles (yes, that Orson Welles), pretty busy, since things go on the blink all the time down there. No malfunction has ever created so much inconvenience, though, as the malfunction of hell's escalator, which leads from the pearly gates to the depths of Hades. What's worse: The breakdown appears to be sabotage.
Satan calls in Steve to investigate. But Steve is distracted these days. He's in love with Flo, a gorgeous, almost saintly figure who has come to hell by choice to ease the suffering of the damned. What's more, she seems to like him, but romance in hell? That could never be. Still, solving the mystery of the escalator could earn him some points with Satan, maybe even a chance with Flo. Or maybe not.
Hell's Super is the first volume in the satire/fantasy comedy series Circles in Hell. It has been compared to other works of "hell fiction" including The Screwtape Letters and Good Omens and to the paranormal humor of Tom Holt, Christopher Moore, and Douglas Adams.
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By K. J. Noyes on 21-01-16
Hell's looking at you, kid...
Where does Hell's Super rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
I have listened to hundreds in the last decade. This is well read and enjoyable (see comments below).
What was one of the most memorable moments of Hell's Super?
I liked all the scenes with Flo really, and how that plot line developed. The moments with Steve and the Devil (and the Devil appearing in different characters) was also very memorable.
Which character – as performed by Michael Gilboe – was your favourite?
Steve - the most rounded out I would say, though the Devil is pretty funny in all his guises and moods.
Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
I listened to it a lot when jogging, when commuting, and it lightened my journeys. I can't say I laughed out loud, but I would guess I had a wry smile on my face.
Any additional comments?
I loved Good Omens, I Lucifer, the film Dogma - I love books that play with superstition and entrenched mythologies and imagine the everyday-ness of their world.
This was refreshingly everyday as well - a fairly normal bloke is in Hell, for eternity. Not quite sure why (seems like a lot of fairly decent folk didn't make it upstairs), but Steve's role in the afterlife is to be Superintendent to the Underworld, and no - he's NOT good at fixing things. That's the point.
It starts by showing us Steve's everyday life down in Hell, how hellish everything is, then it turns into a bit of an Agatha Christie/Philip Marlowe mystery/detective story, as the Devil sends his minion out on a mission to find out why the Stairs (and escalator) between the two afterlifes is broken.
There is romance as Steve nurses a crush for the distinctly heavenly Flo (formerly a Crimean nurse with a lamp...) and is aided (or not) by his desperate-to-be-a-bigshot-again assistant Orson Welles.
It's not overtly laugh-out-loud, it's dry humour, lighter than I was expecting, with memorable characters, and fortunately a well-written lead in Steve, the everyman schmo living a normal after-life and trying to get through the day (Monday, every day).
Not one for those offended by humourous portrayals of Gods and devils, but I found it a very amusing audiobook (and well read by the narrator) with some funny ideas about Hell that kept me entertained.
I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
By Ruth anderson on 14-04-18
I love the humour in this story it's well thought out and I love the little touches like the swearing and cream pies. It was well read and with just the right inflections the only thing is to ignore the narrator's attempts at accents. Would recommend for a funny start to a new series
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Dom on 27-01-16
Not bad for a first
The story was pretty decent, if a bit predictable. Fun listen.
The narrator is decent, but not great. He can't do any non-American accent to save his life, and it gets pretty painful to listen to. On top of that, his pronunciation of certain thing (Cerberus as "kurb-er-us", for example) are just jarring.
Not bad, not the greatest. Would listen to more if more comes and the narrator takes voice acting lessons
9 of 9 people found this review helpful
By Alex on 14-01-16
What would your hell be?
I was grabbed by the description which seemed to promise a funny story of misadventures in hell. The book delivered that and more. It is also a story of someone trying to hold onto his humanity while enduring damnation. Despite being doomed to a job in hell for which he is ill-suited (thus fulfilling the promise of eternal damnation through eternal disappointment, irritation, and emotional suffering); Steve Minion still takes his job description seriously and tries to fix what he can. He does this despite knowing it will just break again. This results in a funny story with a view about how hell hell could be personalized based on individual personalities to maximize each persons suffering.
There are some fun cameos in the book with historical characters such as Nikola Tesla, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford. etc making appearances in hell. This was a neat aspect of the book because there are some people you would think should have gone to the other place. While you never get to know exactly why some of those people ended up disqualified for heaven (Louis Braille how’d you end up in there?), it is interesting to see the author’s imagining of what those people’s personal hells could be.
Good narration for a comedic novel is essential to getting the full effect of the author’s humour. Here I think the narrator succeeded in getting the timing and tone right for the story. It was worth listening to the book (as opposed to reading it) since it comes across as though Steve himself is telling you of his misadventures in hell. There were however accents that I was not feeling (which made me want to drop it to 3 stars) but credit to the narrator for putting in the effort to do accents. Thankfully, the worst offending accent turned out to be part of the plot (which I’m going to assume means the narrator read the work in full prior to starting the production - thus restoring the narration to 4 stars).
Overall: the story is a nice mix of subtle puns, ironic character mixes, and funny situations. Combined with the narration, it is an entertaining listen.
This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of Audiobook Blast.
18 of 19 people found this review helpful