What if you could go back in time and change the course of history? What if the watershed moment you could change was the JFK assassination? 11.22.63, the date that Kennedy was shot - unless....
King takes his protagonist Jake Epping, a high school English teacher from Lisbon Falls, Maine, 2011, on a fascinating journey back to 1958 - from a world of mobile phones and iPods to a new world of Elvis and JFK, of Plymouth Fury cars and Lindy Hopping, of a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and a beautiful high school librarian named Sadie Dunhill, who becomes the love of Jake's life - a life that transgresses all the normal rules of time.
With extraordinary imaginative power, King weaves the social, political and popular culture of his baby-boom American generation into a devastating exercise in escalating suspense.
©2011 Stephen King (P)2011 Simon & Schuster Audio
“This new epic from Stephen King rates among the best he’s written – no small praise for the man who wrote Carrie, It, The Stand and Under the Dome.” (Trucking News)
It was a long listen for what turned out to be way more of a love story than anything else, and I just didn't want that! So it might be just my reaction, but in the end I listened to the whole lot to then think I really need not have bothered. However, if you are interested in an alternative history fiction with a strong, long, love story then this may be for you.
I really enjoyed 29 of the 30 hours I spent listening to this book. Stephen King however, sigh. He still can't write a good ending.
His voice was easy to listen to, his casual laugh during dialogue felt natural, however his Russian and German accents both sounded like poor imitations of Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Great story. Great. Awesome. Almost brilliant. But that ending. Ugh. Come on Stephen, get with the program!
Stephen King of course- Craig Wasson a big no.
Great Story but what else do you expect from a stephen king novel
He is so over the top expressing the characters. for example a lung cancer guy coughing blood very close to death is constantly shouting- why on earth. The narration lacks all subtlety. I listened to "Bag of Bones" read by Stephen King himself and that was just amazing. so many emotions just presented with a little change of voice.
Please audible: use other people who do not overact great stories
Usually films are less exciting especially after reading the book, so probably no
This was a long listen, and brilliant. the narrator is well matched for the story, and the story is compelling. I was sad when it finished, because I felt so involved with the plot. While there is a lot of story, the book never looses the thread of the ever thickening plot.
It was an interesting story that kept me going but will not be on my list of must recommend to my friends.
I found the narrator's voice a bit irritating and did not endear the characters to me.
NO, once was enough
We picked this as our bookclub book because one of our members was reading and enjoying it. It's an OK read but not the caliber for a book club discussion.
Intriguing, emotional, wonderful
I can't split Jake and Sadie, I loved them both.
No, this was the first time, Craig Wasson did a great job.
I loved the whole book and don't want to spoil the ending for anyone who hasn't read it yet, but the last few chapters brought tears to my eyes.
Thoroughly enjoyable read
I have listened to many of his performances an this one definitely compares with his better ones
11.22.63 .... a day that lives on in the minds of so many people the world over. The day a young President was cut down in his prime. But what if he was saved? How would our world be different today? This book answers those questions and more as a very likeable hero Jake/George travels back in time to stop the assassination of President Kennedy. It was the link to JFK that attracted me to this novel by Stephen King, not an author I usually choose. The story kept me enthralled from start to finish and for anyone who like the theme of time travel, this book is a must as it combines fact with fiction and a big "what if??" I totally recommend this book as a must read (listen).
For those other reviewers who really liked the book, I agree with their comments. All in all a really great book and a wonderful narrator.
But one of the other great aspects of the book that doesn't seem to be covered by others is that, at its heart, it is actually a time travel book about how time travel might be possible and what it's implications may be. Everything else, including the assassination of JFK (although King has a great interest in that event), are just vehicles to explore that time travel theory.
This was really refreshing as I've grown a little tired of having to take a deep breath before diving into time travel books that do not waste even a single a sentence on trying to grapple with the fundamental problem with the concept. (e.g. If I go back in time and shoot my grandfather, it would mean that I could not have existed in the present time in order to go back in time to shoot my grandfather. The old paradox). Stephen King tries to address this directly and I think draws on the latest thoughts of top physicists in this area. For that alone, it was really interesting.
Having said all that, I really appreciated the significant research that King undertook to set out a huge amount of detail surrounding the life of Lee Harvey Oswald leading up to the day of the shooting. It really brought Oswald to life in a way that few other books have done.
I now have two favourites: 11 22 63 and The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. I thought nothing would ever equal Fry, but it has. This.
I have no idea. I don't normally read King, but am so pleased I read this. It truly was brilliant. Probably better as an audio book as the narrator truly performed the characters and I felt like I was listening to a play with dozens of actors, not one actor alone.
All of them, but I'd have to say Jake, obviously. Also loved the bookies, Mimi, JFK himself, Sadie, Deek, the school kids in the play.
The past is belligerent.
King fan or not, this is a brilliant story, wonderfully researched and constructed. It seems like one of those novels a writer waits their whole life to write--and everyone, author and readers are like, are truly rewarded for the wait. A bit like Kingslover with the Poisonwood Bible.
"Another great listen"
Really enjoyed the story even though to a point the end was predictable. I just love the stories SK dreams up and I love the way he tells them. The narration was superb!
I never liked Stephen King, but after his Under the Dome, I was hooked and decided to give this book a go as well, though I had doubts about the plot, thinking, what can one squeeze out of time travel. But this book is different from any other I've read on the topic. I was so disappointed when it was finished because I didn't want it to end! Usually I listen to the books while at work to make the time go faster, but this one I listened to on the way home as well and at home straight through, even doing my usual chores. I just couldn't put it aside. Absolutely brilliant, gripping, detailed character development, quite often emotional, with an excellently developed plot, and very well read! Doing a second round now.
"Fab Fab Fab"
Can't think of anything bad about this book. Stephen King at his usual best. Yes it was long but I like that, more value for money! This book became a companion and I was sad when it ended. I loved the main character Jake. I loved the idea of time travel. I loved the way the story unfolded beyond the main event. I loved the love story. I loved the 'time of ago'. The narrator was great, creating both emotion and disbelief, I think I even heard tears. I highly recommend this book.
Best book i have listened to since The Woodcutter, totally gripped by it.I did not want this book to end. The narration was excellent which is always a bonus!
I have never read or listened to a Stephen King book before...i think i will have to see what else is on offer by Mr King.
Wasn't to sure about the narrator when I first started listening to this book, but after half an hour found his narrating fantastic. I had been a fan of Kings for many years and read everything he had written but he seemed to lose focus for a while and I stoped reading his books. I got this on audio after reading reviews and thought I would give it a go. SUPERB. King at his finest could not stop listening. Would highly reccomend this book to anyone.
Plot was great so were the caracters. Give it a go you will love it.
"SO long but I couldnt stop listening"
This book draws you in. It is fantasy and reality mixed so your not quite sure which is which at times. It is a very long listen but at no time did I ever feel the need to stop. The whole book draws you slowly to the end and then the end isn't the ending you imagined. Excellent.
I just finished this book and decided it deserved my first ever audible review.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and it makes me happy to say that unlike many other veterans of the trade, King is at the top of his game.
King said he didn't want to make this book filled with nostalgia, but even for someone who never experienced the 50/60s- or lived in America for that sake- it's not hard to see why Jake prefers the past. The world truly comes alive through King's words and Wasson's voice, and page by page you are sucked into the lifes of these characters, which are as strong as in any of King's works that I've read.
There are slower parts, and I'm sure the book could have been trimmed a little around the edges, but all in all the rest more than makes up for that.
Even if you're not interested in sci-fi, or otherwise put off by the time travel aspect, don't worry! This is just setting the scene for a thrilling story full of love, action and drama.
A terrific time travel tale that I'd recommend to anyone.
"Stephen King's best?"
I have just finished listening to this and in my humble opinion the is the best book Stephen King has ever written. It is certainly the best audio version of his work, and again, in my opinion the best audio book I have ever listened to. The story gripped me from the start and didn't let up all the way through. I loved the section set in Derry and loved seeing two of the main characters and some of the locations from IT again.
The characters are very well written, you really care what happens to them.
The narration by Craig Wasson is amazing, he should get some sort of award for this, it really is that good.
If Stephen King can keep this quality output coming I will be very happy, Even better if Craig Wasson narrates future titles!
To sum it all up, Best Audiobook Ever!
"THE BEST AUDIO BOOK EVER!!!"
I have just finished listening to 11.22.63 and it was simply, the best narrated book I have ever had the pleasure to listen to. This is also the best Stephen King ever, bar-none. The story is a mixture of well researched history, fantasy and ironically a love story that you get drawn in to without even knowing it. I was gutted when the story ended and I think I will go back and listen to it again, it is that good.
If there was an Audio book Oscar, then it would undoubtably go to the narrator Craig Wasson, whose vocalisation and visulation of the book is the equivalent of a Turner masterpiece.
I could waffle forever but I would be stopping you from downloading this epic masterpiece. If you are thinking of becoming an audible member, then make this your first book and you will never look back.
"Review: "11.22.63" by Stephen King"
At nearly 31 hours in length, this was a fairly hefty listen, but King's expertise makes you wish that the story would never end. I'm familiar with his style and still he manages to keep me on the edge of my seat. Although I predicted much of the narrative, those unaccustomed to King's "take-no-prisoners" approach to telling a tale might not. Even if you're the sort of person who can always predict the last scene of the movie, so to speak, there's a lot more to this book than a beginning, middle and end. King's characters were vivid and so realistically composed that it felt like they could up and walk right out of the pages. Some of them, like the infamous Lee Harvey Oswald, were drawn from life so perhaps that was to be expected. Others, however, such as the first-person protagonist, Jake, were equally real to me. I'm sure that Craig Wasson's narration helped. He rocked.
As I life-long inhabitant of Wales, my knowledge of the Kennedy assassination was pretty much limited to a video I was shown in History in year nine. Oh, and I think I saw a documentary on The Discovery Channel once. I'm now in danger of mistaking King's fictionalised history for reality, but still, I feel like I learned a lot from 11/22/63! Sure, I learned about some key dates and figures in American history, but more importantly I learned something about writing. King, in pretty much all of his works, teaches prospective writers that there's one key thing you have to do to your protagonists in order to make them someone readers want to read about. You have to torture them. You have to throw hurdle after hurdle in their path and sometimes they have to stumble at them. But then, scraped knees and all, they've gotta keep an running. Sucks for them, eh?
My love for King is obdurate (book-related joke...), so he gets five stars from me!
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