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)
This is an interesting book and gave me an enjoyable weekend's read -- but I am used to more from King. This book had a linear plot and was written from one character's perspective. I am used to enjoying bouncing back and forth between the "good guy" and the "bad guy" perspectives when reading King. Some of the scariest moments in his other books are when the reader is "trapped" inside the mind of the evil characters. The concept of this book is an interesting one, but the plot is not complex, the main characters are not very memorable, and I am afraid the book will be pretty forgetable over time -- unlike other King books that still haunt me (The Shining, Salem's Lot, ...). I wasn't scared at any point in this book, didn't care too much about the main character, but did like wondering who or what was behind the Cell "surge" that took place. This was more of a whodunit than a horror book. Not bad, not great.
The story itself was great but the narration was awful. Many times there are breaks in the sound where it seems as if someone else speaks part of a line. Not as another character. It's supposed to be the same person talking/thinking but a deeper voice breaks in and then it switches back. Very odd. I did not like it. Besides that I would recomend this to anyone who LOVES Stephen King.
This is my first Stephen King novel and I was quite impressed right from the beginning. It starts out hard hitting and keeps you that way until the middle when it flattens out a little. The pace picks up again toward the end. I had a hard time "putting it down" (turning it off) so I finished it in 2 days--off and on. Overall, I thought the story line was very imaginative and well thought out. Characters were easy to follow. Details were quite clear (and a little gory in places), but you felt like you there witnessing the events take place, which is what you want. I might have gone a couple different directions with the plot, but the ones King picked were good and kept the pace up. Would have liked for King to tell us the source of the "Pulse" and why? I'll just have to use my imagination--darn it. This should do for cell phones (which I hate by the way) what Jaws did for beach swimming--make you think about your next encounter. Do I let it ring or answer it?
Good book if you are a King Fan which I am. I have just gotten tired, I suppose, of the same formula gore. I do appreciate is eye for every day detail, but this book doesn't do it for me.
Also, periodically King feels obliged to make a political, economic, or religious statement (particularly antaganistic toward anything religious) which I have grown tired of. I often agree with his point of view, but couldn't his characters do something beside have a prticular view of life? He substitutes this writing approach for allowing us into the heads and motives of his characters.
In sum, a little tedious.
As a brand new "audio-reader," I was not disappointed in this novel by one of my all-time favourite authors. I agree with some of the others that there was a bit of a drag midstream but I found myself eagerly leaving for work in the morning just so I could reconnect with the storyline. The ending was a shock and left me wondering if there will be a sequel. Above average overall!
I have been a King fan for quite a while. But, it seems as though has latest works are awfully preachy. I guess it's the authors perogative to express his view through his work, but I think the story would have been less distracting without them.
I've heard maybe 20 of S. King's unabridged books on audio. Depth of content is mostly above average, many are excellent, (I unreccomend RoseMadder on audio). Cell is like the Stand, Desperation, Blackhouse and The Wastelands, people who ally themselves to survive and find common ground and answers to life's questions as they battle unimaginable forces. The characters in Cell have less backstory and even less lustre on their journey. King is a great writer though his current style is underwhelming. If the paring down was due to effectual storytelling I could stay interested, but if you love a good story try any of the audio books before Song of Susanna.
Very good audiobook. The storyline kept me coming back for more, although I was a bit disappointed in the ending. I enjoyed knowing the characters and felt almost a sense of knowing and/or loss in their circumstances.
What a winning combination! Steven King weaves another one of his fine yarns, painting vivid pictures in the reader's (or listener's) mind. The narrator does a positively superb job with this one, adding just the right touch of the local accent to each character. My only complaint - I couldn't "put it down." I started listening during a road trip which passed more quickly than ever before. I couldn't wait to finish and stayed up half the night to hear the conclusion upon my return. If you like King, you won't be dissapointed!
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