©1995 Stephen King; (P)2009 Penguin Audiobooks
This novella was first published in the anthology “Different Seasons.” It is available individually as an audiobook, which is how I heard it. This review is for the Shawshank story, not the others in the anthology.
I don’t like prison stories because prisoners are helpless victims. But if I’m going to read one, this is probably one of the best. I was surprised that I wasn’t as depressed as I expected to be. It kept my interest. The ending was good if you don’t think about the huge chunk of life spent in prison. I liked the ending. I liked the hope at the end.
I love reading suspense thrillers. Usually there is evil or bad in those books which is not so different from gang rapes and evil wardens. So the problem with prison stories is the victim part, not the evil part. I can’t give this book 5 stars because it doesn’t have enough feel good, wow, or depth of effect for me. But it is definitely above average, so I’m at 4 stars.
What’s good? characters, dialogue, and plot. Andy is unforgettable due to his patience and internal strength. He survived gang rapes better than most because he chose to fight every time. He got hurt worse by fighting, but so did the attackers.
What’s bad? The depressing subject matter of evil in prison: gang rapes which the guards don’t stop and things done by an evil warden. He’d punish men with a bread and water diet, causing their teeth to fall out. He wanted Andy under his thumb and to lose heart. He did something terrible to Andy which was depressing, but I can’t mention it to avoid spoilers.
I wish the author would have explained what happened to warden Norton at the end. Why did he leave the prison? Was he fired? Were any of his illegal activities found out? Why was he so dejected/down when he left?
The narrator Frank Muller was great - as always.
Genre: prison fiction.
Ending: good for the main characters.
At first I was reluctant to download this. I had seen the movie and wasn't sure the book would be as entertaining. What a great book. This is a compelling story. It is also a great "short" book based on a novella. Sometimes I don't want to wait 30 hours to find out something ends.
After listening to this, I downloaded 11-22-1963 by Stephen King. Another outrageously good book. These are among my favorites.
I watched the movie "Shawshank Redemption years ago and loved it. Morgan Freeman was fantastic as the protagonist and he really made the movie great. They also changed the plot for the movie to make it more compact. I usually hate movies made from books, because the book is usually so much better. I won't usually even watch a movie based on a book I read until years later (if ever).
If Morgan Freeman had narrated the book, it might have worked. He didn't and it doesn't.
Absolutely! Saw the movie years ago, so decided to revisit the novel in this format. The audio book held my attention as well as the movie did.
As a long time believer that our prison systems need to be overhauled -- especially in some areas of this country, it was encouraging to hear a story where some injustices were "corrected."
The book does differ in some instances from the movie, but both were enjoyable.
Can't think of one.
He was credible.
No extreme reaction. I listen to my audio books as I drive a motorhome some distances. It's better that I don't have "extreme reactions."
Definitely worth your time and $$.
I am not a King fan, but this short story is awesome. I am a huge fan of the movie and will watch it over and over again. Likewise, I am now a huge fan of the story and the narration and will listen to it over and over again. For the amount of enjoyment compared to the cost, it is one of the best purchases on audible.
Yes. You're always wanting more.
Wen Red and Andy got together at the end of the book.
Frank Muller is and always will be one of my favorite readers.
When red got out and cried because he was overwhelmed.
Stephen King has a way of telling a story that take you from your living room, house, or from where ever you are right in to that prison.
He does this on all of his books.
I guess that's what makes a great writer.
The audio version has such great depth, Muller gives a phenomenal performance. It's like you are a prisoner in the thick of it with Red and Andy. I feel the audio version is better than the print version due to the added body that Muller ultimately brings to the work.
The story was believable, no supernatural here. Right down to the nitty gritty, the hard truth of life in prison and the events that allow one to be free no matter where you are. From the details about the ugly to the cleanliness of his demeanor Andy draws you in wishing the story to never end......
I have listened to many of Frank Muller's performances, I am drawn to his mesmerizing voice. This performance is as great as any other, I miss this artist.
A story about a man's life gone wrong, righted
Yes- it is amazing. It captures you and you can't put it down!
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