On October 1st, God is in His heaven, the stock market stands at 10,140, most of the planes are on time, and Clayton Riddell, an artist from Maine, is almost bouncing up Boylston Street in Boston. He's just landed a comic book deal that might finally enable him to support his family by making art instead of teaching it. He's already picked up a gift for his long-suffering wife, and he knows just what he'll get for his boy Johnny. Why not a little treat for himself? Clay's feeling good about the future.
That changes in a hurry. The cause of the devastation is a phenomenon that will come to be known as The Pulse, and the delivery method is a cell phone. Everyone's cell phone. Clay and the few desperate survivors who join him suddenly find themselves in the pitch-black night of civilization's darkest age, surrounded by chaos, carnage, and a human horde that has been reduced to its basest nature...and then begins to evolve.
There are 193 million cell phones in the United States alone. Who doesn't have one? Stephen King's utterly gripping, gory, and fascinating novel doesn't just ask the question "Can you hear me now?" It answers it with a vengeance.
©2006 Stephen King. All rights reserved.; (P)2006 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved. Audioworks is an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division.
"King's imagining of what is more or less post-Armageddon Boston is rich, and the sociological asides made by his characters along the way...are jaunty and witty." (Publishers Weekly)
Avid audible listener for over 10 years.
I had seen this book for years and for some reason never read it. It is very similar to his other books, but with a unique premise. Once you give up on some basic reality (the cellphone being able to turn you into a zombie), it's really quite entreating. It's very similar to earlier books such as The Stand, but different enough to be a good listen. I suppose I liked it even more because it starts off in Boston where I live so I could better imagine the scenes. Stephen King has better books, but if your are a King addict this will work quite fine. Ringing off now.
I'm just a dumb troglodyte who like reading. Me feel good after I read book.
Like all good Stephen King books, the combination of strong storytelling and intriguing characters are the main ingredients that make Cell a must read/listen. Although the premise of the story is quite ridiculous, examining how these characters respond and adapt to their changing environment keeps the reader locked into the story. Unlike many writers, Stephen King truly allows the reader to know his characters. We are feed small portions of character revealing information scattered throughout the book rather than outright biographies. The dynamics of how an initial team of strangers develop a shared and agreed upon mission is my favorite take away from the book. Cell is much more than a pseudo zombie book (although all the killing and survival keeps you engaged) but the development of friendships within the ultimate good versus evil backdrop.
Kudos to Campbell Scott! As the narrator he delivers a even pace and more character voice range than I anticipated.
Beginners of horror
Not up to his usually excellent story telling
Dull, bland, uninspired
The campy writing
Not for the typical King fan
I like Steven King. A lot. That's why I regret having to pan this book. Although the story starts out strong, with the detailed narration and initial character development that King is so well known for, the plot arch quickly peters out. What, at first, promised to be a unique zombie story turns into a drab and un-engaging treck through thick prose. What's worse, King has obviously stopped caring about investing even the smallest modicum of research into his fiction. Virtually every reverence to modern technology and pop culture read with the sincerity of an aging parent trying to appeal to a hip teenager.
Although the beginning of the story promises deep character development, it doesn't deliver, and the characters (aside from the main character) remain cardboard cutouts. After the initial excitement of the zombie story fades away, this weird, nebulous psychic nonsense tangent ensues, which could have been a fun twist, but never develops. [Spoiler alert] Then this kid comes up with a far-flung hypothesis that only an old man who knows nothing at all about computers could come up with, and there you have it: instant denouement.
The climax of the action doesn't really make sense either, but even that would have been forgivable if the end of the story had been rewarding. It isn't. Instead, King pulls a poorly-veiled version of the ending of IT out of his bag of tricks and grafts it on. I'd recommend King to any reader, but not this book.
The Cell is an excellent idea, well written with great character development but unfortunately lacks an ending. The book ends at the perfect point for the sequel to begin, however there is no sequel. King sets us up with many different story threads and then just walks away. There were just too many unanswered questions. Maybe next time...
Just couldn't be drawn into it as I'd hoped. Not scary enough, not shocking enough, which is what I expect from King. Husband read hard copy and really liked it, maybe I was a bit distracted while I listened, but, still don't think I'll listen a second time. Cool concept, though. Very imaginative.
King has a tenancy to build up his stories and fail to deliver a satisfying climax. This book was by no means bad, but it simply left me unsatisfied by the end.
The narration was good and the characters were alright, but the way King chose to represent, for the lack of a better word, the 'Adversaries' of this story was a huge letdown.
But that's just me and I hope you enjoy the book better than I did!
I still remain a huge King fan.
As one of King's Constant Readers, I was delighted at this return to his classic storytelling style. He takes your imagination hostage and draws vivid images in your mind like no one else. Hold on to your guts, because this wild ride had me horrified, grossed-out, and laughing out loud all at the same time. Campbell Scott does a fantastic job - his deadpan narration and comic timing suits the story perfectly.
This was one of the best books I have ever listened to. This is the type of book that makes the reader imagine every word Steven King writes. I was amazed with the vivid images that were given from this book. The problem I have is with the ending. Without giving away the ending, the reader is left with choices on what happened after the end of the book, instead of letting the author make the decision. I would have rated this book a 5, but after yelling at my MP3 player upon the ending, I felt that I was risen to the point of greatness, and just fell off the cliff at the end. I give it a 4, because I was able to feel comfortable with the ending that I chose to have for this book. I just wish Steven King could have done that instead.
Some of the all too critical reviews dissuaded me from purchasing this book. When I finally took a listen it was a shock. I admit that it sounds a lot like The Stand - Raggedy Man/Trashcan Man there were a few parallels to Dawn of the Dead, but if you are truly a Stephen King fan it is not so hard to spot the differences in this work and appreciate the ending.
BTW the book is read by one author. There is a pitch and volume issue three times that I noticed but nothing that will interfere with the "stuck to the edge of your seat" ride that the novel takes you on.
I felt paranoid, elated and scared right along with the characters. I can't recommend this book enough.
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