63 y/o psychologist with two sons, living in SF Bay Area. I absolutely love all the feedback I've been getting for my reviews. It's very gratifying. Thanks to all of you.
Ignore King's horror stories and sit down with this book for the most thoughtful, funny, entertaining experience you will be lucky to have. The book is told by the prison guard who manages the "green mile," which is death row at a southern state prison. There is a parallel plot concerning the guard's life when he gets old. It's not as thrilling as the death row scenes, which are spell-binding. The book goes by several titles, one of which is "The Unfortunate Death of Eduard Delacroix," and I will not spoil the plot by telling you the details of this prisoner's execution. There is a villain you can truly and fully hate. There is some magic in the story, and I am a very practical person who generally doesn't believe in magic, but Mr. King pulls it off with a skill which is a true gift. The other central figure in the book is a mountain of a man who lives on Death Row long enough for you to care for him deeply. The guard and his colleagues do something so remarkable, and so contrary to the prison rules, that each moment of this particular adventure is almost worth the price of the whole book.
I have praised Frank Muller to the point at which his narrations might seem superhuman. There is nothing magical about Frank, just talent so towering that no one yet comes close to it. Sadly, Frank died several years ago, but his marvelous performances live on. He never slips. There is never a false moment. For movie fans, his skill and authenticity are in some ways comparable to those of Diane Lane and Cate Blanchett, two actors we have been lucky enough to watch and listen to for years now. I can only hope that they read audiobooks some day. In the meantime, I listen to Frank over and over again. My wife just listened to "Polar Star" twice, and she is now Frank's captive as well.
A death row story may seem too heavy to some of you. Rest assured that The Green Mile is nothing of the sort. The artistry will transport you.
I hadn't been a fan of Stephen King, but I had just finished reading (listening to) Neil Gaiman's wonderful faery tale, Stardust, and was moved to try another "master" storyteller's fanciful tale. I should have saved my listener's credit. The story was dull, uninteresting, and not believable. It might have been redeemed if the narrator had any sense of the dramatic, but this was sorely lacking. Die-hard King fans obviously found the story compelling, but I would not recommend it to anyone looking for a good yarn. Stick with Gaiman.
Perhaps it's because I am a southerner, but I wasn't sure that Frank Muller was the right narrator for this part. The entire book should be told in a southern accent...some of the things the main character says sound absolutely RIDICULOUS is Muller's Yankee style! And when he speaks for other characters in the book, and DOES use a southern drawl, it just seems like the main character is mocking everyone else's way of speaking...a way of speaking, as the dialog of the book makes clear, that he shares!
Other than that, this is an excellent book, and the narration really was superb...I just couldn't get past that one little point, which I thought of constantly! King's work here would get 5 stars for me, but the narration would only get three because of this problem, so I split the difference.
Eliminate the foul language and sexual references
Narrator was a bit monotone, lacked expression