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The Running Man | [Stephen King]

The Running Man

The year is 2025. The Running Man is America's favorite television game show. Ben Richards is the program's latest contestant-and the Hunters' latest target in a rigged game of death.
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Publisher's Summary

The year is 2025. The Running Man is America's favorite television game show. Ben Richards is the program's latest contestant-and the Hunters' latest target in a rigged game of death.

©1982 Richard Bachman (P)2010 Penguin

What the Critics Say

"Merely by tickling the keys of his word-processor King can make the flesh creep half a world away" (The Times)
"Stephen King is one of those natural storytellers...getting hooked is easy" (Frances Fyfield, Express)
"An incredibly gifted writer, whose writing, like Truman Capote's, is so fluid that you often forget that you're reading." (Guardian)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (243 )
5 star
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4.2 (170 )
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Story
4.2 (165 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Michael Manhattan, NY, United States 10-10-11
    Michael Manhattan, NY, United States 10-10-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
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    "Make sure you skip the first chapter"

    Great book, really enjoyable but the prologue with King ruins the ending of the book. Do yourself a favour and skip it.

    13 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Chula Vista, CA, United States 07-23-11
    Richard Chula Vista, CA, United States 07-23-11 Member Since 2011

    -RC-

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    "Good book but lacked consistency."

    The opening monologue from the author spoils the ending. Very weak Mr.King (or Bachman). :/ They probably should have left that for the end of the book. Skip like 12 minutes ahead if you have not read this book before!

    I enjoyed this book but I wish they kept bringing in the game show elements especially after action scenes. They only did it like once and it really added a great effect to the story but without it became a run of the mill fugitive story. Also, if they had brought hunters more into the story it would have been nice. It's always the police that are after him and after going on about hunters it was very disappointing that they played almost no part. If they were consistent with that it could have made this book much more exciting, I still enjoy it though.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 01-19-14
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 01-19-14 Member Since 2010

    I will listen to NO boring book. Old Fav's,Card, King , Hobb. New Fav's, Hill, Scalzi, Sawyer, Interested in Lansdale, Crouch, Konrath

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "MOVE ALONG MAGGOT"

    IT WAS A SHALLOW EMOTION FEELING SORRY
    If you have watched the movie this is nothing like it. King kind of mentions that he did not care for the movie, he also did not like the movie Shinning. I believe in both cases the directors did what they needed to make the books popular for Movies. So, the movies are good and the books are good, but they differ in many ways.

    SH@T IN YOUR BOOT AND EAT IT.
    This is a dark Orwellian type of book. It is very Liberal in it's political views. The United States has gone to Hell in a hand basket. The air is so polluted by large corporations that children are dying from cancers and other diseases that are pollution related. Their is a large divide between the haves and the have nots. The poor have no medical insurance and they are starving. The cops are corrupt, mean and are always calling the people maggots. THE POOR ALWAYS HAVE ITCHY A##HOLES.

    All that said, I love the book, love King and love King as Bachman. Long before their was a Survivor or nothing on TV, but reality shows, King had predicted that we would be watching game shows in which real people, put their lives on the line for money. I like the main character, who despite the situations he is thrown in, remains defiant. I agree with some others that more could have been done with the game itself and with the hunters. If you read a lot of King, then you know he is more interested in making social statements then in scary books. He has a reputation for the scary, but most of his books are character driven with scary as the backdrop. He usually has a message and it us usually liberal. When they make the movies they take out the message for scary effects. Read the book and watch the movies, you will like both.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Suzn F Fletcher, VT, US 09-29-10
    Suzn F Fletcher, VT, US 09-29-10 Member Since 2005

    I believe a reviewer should finish a book before submitting a review. What do you think?

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    "CREEPY AND COOL STORY"

    How fun that this was written 20+ years ago, about the then future, the time we live in now, the early 2000s. King predicted a very dismal USA, with so many people out of work, no real middle class, only those who have and those who do not. The cars all run on air, pollution is extreme, and people readily hurl nasty insults to one another. The premise of this running man in a corrupt game against such a backdrop, I found to be intriguing and a bit addictive. I didn't want to put the book down once I got past the first hour or so. I'm glad I gave this oldie a try.

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonathan Allen New York, NY United States 02-23-12
    Jonathan Allen New York, NY United States 02-23-12 Member Since 2003
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    "King's "introduction" gives away the ending"
    Any additional comments?

    This is a classic and gripping story, but Audible made a bad mistake by adding a comment by Stephen King BEFORE the book begins. In it he reveals the ending. Make sure you skip this, and come back to it at the end.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 03-02-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The FOREWORD SPOILS THE ENDING!!! Skip it!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Running Man the most enjoyable?

    King's writing is always the best part. I can really feel like I'm inside the stories.


    Any additional comments?

    This foreword is great, especially for fans of King that've read his Bachman books. HOWEVER, in it, King tells the ending of the Running Man. It was written, I think, as a foreword for all the Bachman books, and someone overlooked this fact and stuck it in the beginning of this story. It really would do much more good as an afterword. Still a great story though!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Melroy NYC 01-23-13
    David Melroy NYC 01-23-13 Member Since 2011

    SVA -- 2010*

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    "Favorite King Audiobook!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Running Man to be better than the print version?

    Never read the printed version, but Kevin Kenerly certainly adds to the enjoyment of the experience.


    What other book might you compare The Running Man to and why?

    It's a bit like Blade Runner the movie but with more plausible and intense twists and turns.


    Have you listened to any of Kevin Kenerly’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Never listened to him prior but he does a great job with this one. He has an exciting fast pace voice and actually acts out the intensity (not overing doing, just to boost the drama)


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The ending. Won't spoil it but the detail of the events are intense... also the final conclusion is just perfect and resolves the book exactly how it needs to be concluded.


    Any additional comments?

    Skip the prelude!!! They do spoil the book: skip to the 13 minute mark.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Giancoli South Jersey 11-30-12
    D. Giancoli South Jersey 11-30-12 Member Since 2010
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    "Good Stuff - wish they made the movie like this"
    Would you listen to The Running Man again? Why?

    Well ... no. Kind of a lame question - I wouldn't listen to any book again.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The grittiness. Darker than you would think - doesn't follow the general guidelines of a story.


    What does Kevin Kenerly bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    not sure / was well read & entertaining.


    Who was the most memorable character of The Running Man and why?

    The main one


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ana TEMECULA, CA, United States 05-06-11
    Ana TEMECULA, CA, United States 05-06-11
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    "Great story, NOT so great reader"


    I've read this book years ago and it was as good as I had remembered it (very current despite the fact that it was written so many years ago). We listened to it while driving cross country and I was very disappointed. The way it was read...It would have easily put us to sleep. We had the volume all the way up but the reader's voice fluctuated so much that at times we could not hear and other times we could not hear anything else (I had to readjust constantly). I understand the need for emphasis but you can do that without raising or lowering your voice. Would not recommend for road trip listening

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    karlhungusjr Kansas 08-15-14
    karlhungusjr Kansas 08-15-14 Member Since 2012
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    "very well done"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    yes. great original story at a fast pace.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Ben Richards. He's just a great everyman.


    What about Kevin Kenerly’s performance did you like?

    This was EASILY my favorite audio performance of all time. voices were just perfect. no matter the age, race gender, or mental state, it was spot on.


    Any additional comments?

    seriously I can't praise the performance enough. well done mr kenerly.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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