Of the 500+ books I have purchased from Audible, William Hurt is the BEST narrator I have heard to date. Completely unexpected but there it is.
My awe of Stephen King's genius expands with each of his books I read or listen to. If you have enjoyed his work in the past, you will enjoy this book. It both helps to answer matters raised in previous books and, it is fun to read.
By the way Mr. King, when in the hell are you going to make "The Stand" available on Audible. In my opinion it is one of your top two or three novels. Perhaps Mr. Hurt might take a stab at it. In any event, please hurry.
I had only read bag of bones and liked it enough to try another, I'm now hooked. This was a great listen, I did find the Vietnam parts a bit long winded and repetitive but the other stories were simply magic, the interconnections were great. My favorite King so far ( well thats based on two :).
I have long considered Stephen King an underrated literary author, and this book proves me right. Here he is at his literary best - stories of depth and insight that define great storytellers.
Hurt's narration is slow at the beginning, and takes getting used to, but it fits with the slow summer days in Bobby Garfield's life and picks up right when it needs to. And King, as always, is simply brilliant reading his own work.
I must say that most of this book is good as in the first story and the last few stories in part 3. Part 2 however, from where which the title was taken is stellar. I really dont even mind King's narration -- while not as spectacular as Frank Muller, King's narration adds an essence of reality to the story being told in my opionion. As with most King novels you are not roped in at the very beginning but throughout Part 2 events/emotions keep tieing together completeting a wonderful symphony of a story by the end. Really moving adding a sense of realism that many novels do not achieve. I can also say wonderful things about part 1 -- but being a fan of The Dark Tower books and as my views may be biased on that note I will not comment. The third part of this book ties up the loose ends from parts one and 2 so while necessary for some, others could do without. I was not drawn in with the same magic as the First 2 stories in this book. These last stories seem cut and pasted together in a manner of speaking.
Overall -- Even if for the second story alone -- I would Recommend this book. In all reality the first 2 stories are excellent. Even the writing within part 3 is good -- just not stellar.
Two Thumbs Up Overall
This has to be one of the most memorable books I have listened to. Hurt is good King is good. I probably liked King better....It's his story.
I have recently become an audio book junkie. It started about six months ago when I got an Ipod and began listening to books rather than music on long car trips and plane flights. I came across the Dark Tower series by accident and was hooked from the start. The original narrator Frank Muller was amazing! He brought the story and the characters to an almost living state. Unfortunately he suffered a motorcycle accident and could not continue the series after the fourth installment. It was carried on by George Guidall whose voice was a bit too old and lacked the range to convey the story as Muller had portrayed it. (Although it was still the most captivating story I have ever heard.) Anyone familiar with the Dark Tower series knows that a lot of the characters have connections to other Stephen King novels, "Hearts in Atlantis" being one of them. I began this story with great expectations only to turn it off after three minutes due to the horrible narration by William Hurt. It honestly sounded like a stoned college kid mumbling through a book he was half heartedly paying attention to. I tried to start it over several times through several days thinking it couldn't be as bad as I remembered, but it was! I will save myself the agony and read the book myself. It's a shame because Stephen King is listed as a co-narrator and the stuff I've heard him read was really quite good. I just can't put myself through the long pauses halfway through a sentence (or a word, name, page turn, whatever), the monotone and partially confused sounding voice, and the loud intake of breath which comes every few seconds. Big disappointment.
First let me say that William Hurt was the perfect narrator for the beginning of the story. It made the whole story come alive. I was pleasantly surprised when I listened to this book to be instantly immersed in the story. Even though I had seen the movie , I still found the book especially fascinating. There was so much more depth and meaning to the situations.
I will be recommending this book to friends and family as an excellent read or listen and hope they will take my advice because they will be thankful that they did. Having grown up in the fifties and sixties myself, I could relate to the situations in home and College and though I was not a Vietnam veteran , I certainly saw everything that was on the television and in the news and in the movies and really could relate to the stories of the guys in this book. I had friends and relatives of friends who were there, some did not return, some came back changed forever.
Don't pass this up. It is a fantastic book.
I knew and was prepared for how bad Stephen King is as a narrator but William Hurt sounded like it was his first time reading anything. Lots of pregnant pauses that should not have been there and little to no character differentiation. If the story had not been as interesting as it was, I would have stopped listening.
Now to the story...I cannot get enough of The Dark Tower and even though Roland doesn't appear here, some of the characters he touched are here.
I will recommend this book for the fantastic story but just beware of the 2 sets of fingernails continually scraping the chalkboard. It's hard to get used to but it can be done!
Not the typical King supernatural story but it gives a nod to the Dark Tower series and that was great. This story is a tapestry that surrounds 3 characters from age 10-50. William Hurt is an amazing narrator. The only reason I gave this 4 stars instead of 5, is because of the annoying music. Every time I really got into the story, I'd be interrupted by blasting music. GET RID OF IT!!! It doesn't enhance the story at all.