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11-22-63: A Novel | [Stephen King]

11-22-63: A Novel

On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In his critically-acclaimed epic, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it. Named Audible’s Best Book of 2011, 11-22-63 easily holds its own among King’s earlier classics, and Craig Wasson, handpicked by King to narrate, is nothing short of amazing: he has a fine actor's gift for performing the novel's wide range of characters, emotions, and action with great authenticity. — Chris

Publisher's Summary

On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back?

In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

It begins with Jake Epping, a 35-year-old English teacher in Lisbon Falls, Maine, who makes extra money teaching GED classes. He asks his students to write about an event that changed their lives, and one essay blows him away: a gruesome, harrowing story about the night more than 50 years ago when Harry Dunning’s father came home and killed his mother, his sister, and his brother with a sledgehammer. Reading the essay is a watershed moment for Jake, his life - like Harry’s, like America’s in 1963 - turning on a dime.

Not much later his friend Al, who owns the local diner, divulges a secret: his storeroom is a portal to the past, a particular day in 1958. And Al enlists Jake to take over the mission that has become his obsession - to prevent the Kennedy assassination.

So begins Jake’s new life as George Amberson, in a different world - of Ike and JFK and Elvis, of big American cars and sock hops and cigarette smoke everywhere. From the dank little city of Derry, Maine (where there’s Dunning business to conduct), to the warmhearted small town of Jodie, Texas, where Jake falls dangerously in love, every turn is leading, eventually of course, to a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and to Dallas, where the past becomes heart-stoppingly suspenseful - and where history might not be history anymore. Time-travel has never been so believable. Or so terrifying.

©2011 Stephen King. All Rights Reserved. (P)2011 Simon & Schuster, Inc

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Rebecca Fort Oglethorpe, GA, United States 11-27-11
    Rebecca Fort Oglethorpe, GA, United States 11-27-11 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    32
    ratings
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    19
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    4
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    "Not a Stephen King fan, but I loved this book!"
    Would you listen to 11-22-63 again? Why?

    The story is a page-turner - no doubt! Kept my attention the entire way through!


    What did you like best about this story?

    The development of Jake's character was superb.


    What about Craig Wasson’s performance did you like?

    The narration was one of the best I've ever heard. The voices were done well without being overdone.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm not a Stephen King fan, but I loved this book. I originally downloaded it based on positive reviews and I wasn't disappointed.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sara MIDLAND, TX, United States 11-18-11
    Sara MIDLAND, TX, United States 11-18-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    "I guess you had to be there..."

    This book was hard for me to get through. The plot was decent, but I didn't feel the character development was there. I was interested in the beginning, but it was really drawn out and being that I was born in 1979 and don't know much about the JFK assassination it wasn't as personal as I think it might be for others. Sometimes I felt like King assumed the reader/listener would know what he was talking about without going into more detail. I also dreaded listening to any parts having to do with Sadie and George/Jake. I am not sure if it was the Sadie voice used or just that I thought this romance was way too predictable, over the top and sappy. I did enjoy listening to King's idea of how the world would have been different if JFK had lived, but this was only a tiny part of this book. I think I might have enjoyed it more if I had read it, but I am not interested enough to try.

    5 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joshua 11-16-11
    Joshua 11-16-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Book!"

    I am halfway done with this book and it is amazing. Not as creepy as normal Stephen King books, but I am not done yet. The narrator is great.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    PaintPots The Hague Netherlands 04-26-12
    PaintPots The Hague Netherlands 04-26-12 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    253
    21
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    Story
    "Oh Editor, where were you?"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    The premise of 11-22-63 is interesting and thought provoking - going back in time to change historic events. King does a good job bringing alive the (unexpected) implications. Furthermore, it was a lot of fun to live in the past from the eyes of who we are now. Finally, the ending was interesting and unpredictable but fitting - really good. Because of all these points, I listened to the whole thing. All 30 hrs. and 44 min!!!

    But dear Editor, dear author if you cared for your reader you would have cut it by a third, at least. It dragged for most of the middle. I used it to fall to sleep to at night and didn't bother to rewind to hear the parts I missed. So effectively, I cut out about 30%!

    Would I recommend it??? How much time do you have? Has audible made an abridged version yet?


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Good ending which was not predictable


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Meagan vR Ohio 02-01-12
    Meagan vR Ohio 02-01-12 Member Since 2013

    I collect spores, molds, and fungus.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Way, way too long for the story it's telling"

    Don't buy this book if you're a Stephen King fan. In addition to not being scary, spooky, or twisted in the least it is unbelievably long and drawn out. And redundant. I knew it was over thirty hours when I bought it of course, but there are some books that can run that entire time, hold a listeners interest, and feel like they finished the book in not nearly the length of the running time. 11-22-63 is not this novel. It is basically a story of a guy's life in a small town. Yes there is the time travel thing and Lee Harvey Oswald thing but it doesn't really add too much to the story. The story would have been no different if there was absolutely no time travel involved. I didn't finish it.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandra Arlington, VA, United States 01-28-12
    Sandra Arlington, VA, United States 01-28-12 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    125
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    "Bad to the bone"

    Narrator, story, concept, especially the narrator. I am so out of sync with the rest of the listeners, I hated the narrator. I wanted to love this book. I did two hours before I threw in the hat, the ear buds, and deleted it from iTunes. Sad day.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LucyZoe Moscow, ID, United States 01-25-12
    LucyZoe Moscow, ID, United States 01-25-12 Member Since 2008

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    3
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    "Unexpected Pleasure"

    What a journey! I loved every minute of the book and Mr King kept me on my toes and exceeded my expectations. I was particularly happy with the ending.

    Enjoy!

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Frank Stone Mountain, GA, United States 12-27-11
    Frank Stone Mountain, GA, United States 12-27-11 Member Since 2012
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    "Pedestrian at Best"

    The only reason I got this book was because the NY Times named it one of the best books of 2011. What were they thinking? I've never been a big Stephen King fan, but thought I'd give it a try. Bad use of a credit.

    The premise is great, and the book starts off well, but slips into a dreary listen when he has those two years to kill before Oswald shows up. And he does kill them and takes us along for the ride. I actually felt sorry for the Mr. Wasson and his narration. I'm not sure how he kept from falling asleep. With so little to work with his performance becomes sub-par as well. Somehow I made it through the second 8 hours, but had to give up shortly into the third download. I suppose I'll fast forward to the end and see if anything interesting happens, but I know the ending anyway.

    Save your money on this clinker.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maurizio 12-08-11
    Maurizio 12-08-11 Member Since 2006

    - research assistent at the University of Lugano (communication) - co-founder of the Seth publishing company Switzerland - translator of the Seth material by Jane Roberts

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "One of the best novels ever!"

    There are many great books by King, but 11-22-63 is undoubtedly his finest work so far. It cannot be compared to any of his previous novels since it is not a horror story. It is a story about friendship, love, passion, compassion and of course time travel and a great lesson to learn in the end. And all of you who have read "IT" will even meet some old friends in Derry... And apart of this: Craig Wasson does a fantastic job as reader!

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine Uniontown, OH, United States 12-07-11
    Christine Uniontown, OH, United States 12-07-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not normaly a King fan, but WOW"
    If you could sum up 11-22-63 in three words, what would they be?

    this book is scarey, sad, and very thought provoking,an oveall good read! grabs you from the start and will not let go!


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    If I could have stayed up for 30 straight hours to listen I would have


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
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