©1999 Stephen King, All Rights Reserved, (P)1999 Simon & Schuster Inc., All Rights Reserved
"We now know what Stephen King, the master of horror, is afraid of. The Vietnam War...scares him so bad he won't let his hero act imprudently." (The New York Times)
"...Hurt skillfully evokes pathos from the story's fine detailing...." (Publishers Weekly)
This was one of the better audible books I have listened to. Stephen King knows how to tell gripping sotries and in this book you have multiple ones that all coincide. It is a difference of night and day to the movie and to listen to this tale unfold is to listed to different eras of life and the the songs, stlyes and memories of the people who lived them. I would recommend this audible book to anyone. The music, while strange at first, makes a lot of sense and adds to the story line as it progresses.
This book is pretty typical of other King Books like Four Seasons, or the Green Mile. So if you're a fan of those, you'll be a fan of this.
Story-wise this book is enjoyable, and becomes even more so as the book progresses, I particularly liked the college section, from which the book derives its title.
The only reason this book recieved four stars instead of five, is for a few technical reasons. The first section of the book is read by a voice actor whom I found to be uninteresting. Very monotone and hard to follow at times. The other distracting part in this cut: the producers of this audio book played music in between each chapter. This was extremely annoying. Often the music playing didn't even capture the tone of the book at that particular time.
All in all, my recomendation is to give the sample a listen, before you commit to downloading it. If you're a King fan (especially a fan of his Dark Tower series) youll like the book. Just make sure first you can stand the voice of the actor reading for the first part of the book. (The middle section atleast is read by Stephen King himself)
This is the most amazing book. Stephen King is brillant and at his best in this wonderful and amazing story. The movie was good, but it was only one part of this book. The other parts relate to the first, but in a strange and moving way. I could listen to this book a hundred times and never tire of it. The first part is read by William Hurt--amazing narrator! He is so perfect for the first story about the kids. Then you are jarred out of his reading by Stephen King reading the second part. His voice matches the weird and crazy events in the second part. Hurt again reads the third part, and you are relieved to have this story and his soothing voice again. brilliantly crafted writing and narration. I love this book!
William Hurt's reading of this novel is absolutely beautiful. Not all narrators of audiobooks are capable of bringing so much emotion, and life to the book's characters as Mr. Hurt. In addition, Stephen King narrates as well. King is probably my favorite narrator of his books. This is exemplified in his reading of Bag of Bones. In the beginning King's voice seems somewhat tight, but after an hour he finds his groove and the result swallows the listener until the end. In Hearts in Atlantis, William Hurt's acting talents bring the characters to life. His cadence and understanding of the of the words, and how they should be read result, in a very engaging, and emotional story.
Additionally, anyone who is a fan of The Gunslinger series will feel right at home with this one. As with most of King's books, reading The Gunslinger first will give the reader much of insight into most of King's other books (and King's universe). It is no different with this one. Without spoiling the story, I will just say that this book tells of a character from Rowland's world, and how he went "on vacation".
Any fan of Stephen King needs to read this book. I am often guilty of reading a book's synopsis, and deciding that "I'll pass on this one because it just doesn't sound intriguing enough". In these cases that is a sure sign to indeed read the book. Quite often it is these books that hold your attention most, and give the most in return for your time (Insomnia).
In short, give ALL of King's books a chance. They do not disappoint.
I initially thought the music was a distraction but after the first couple of chapters I found that it added to the effect of the story and was a good addition.
I thought William Hurt did an excellent job reading and found Stephen Kings readings to be just outstanding.
I have been a long time King fan (since the early 80's and have found having the books read to me even though I am somewhat familiar with the story only adds to the experience.
Awesome story Highly reccomended.
I read this book when it was first released, and decided to rediscover it mainly due to it's connection to The Dark Tower. (which I am also re-discovering through audio.)
The story was not very memorable when I read it on paper, but William Hurt's reading has completely brought it into a new perspective for me. I am absolutely enjoying the hell out of this audio book! It is coming to life in a way that the printed version never did for me. Perhaps it's partially because I'm several years older, but I think it's mainly due to the emotion, the vitality and the CONVICTION with which the story is being read. It captures the weariness of Ted Brautigan, the desperate selfishness of Liz Garfield, and the wonder of life as seen from Bobby's eyes. Fantastic.
I hope that many more of Stephen King's books can be adapted to audio with Mr. Hurt at the Microphone.
Fantastic, Best thing I've read or listened to from Stephen King.I relived the 60's and it definitely brought back memories.It makes you want to ask Stephen King if he was ever in jail in Chicago.Stephen King does one heck of a job narrating his books.
For those of us who are Baby Boomers, this book brought back fond memories and some not so fond. The 50's were terrific. We didn't worry about bad people or war. Kids on summer vacation would leave home early morning to play and show up at suppertime. Our parents had no worries about our safety. There were plenty of people like Ted Broadagan, nice people. This extremely well written book by Stephen King reminds us of that time, our first kiss, first love AND the uncertanty of the Viet Nam War years. Some of us fondly reminisce about the 60's and 70's. "The good old days." Some of that time WAS good. This book reminds us of how difficult a time it really was. A lot of us forgot (intentionally and not) what it was like. This book reminds us of a time when a war far off in the rice paddies came close to tearing our country apart. It reminded me of the friends who didn't come back from those rice paddies, the ones who came home in green plastic bags, the ones who came back...changed, some for the better, some not. I lost track of how many times I was listening in tears. This review was not intended to discourage anyone from "reading" the book, quite the contrary. I urge you to get this book and listen to all of it. It's an education of sorts. I hope you enjoy listening to it.
Thanks for the memories Stephen King.
Of the 500+ books I have purchased from Audible, William Hurt is the BEST narrator I have heard to date. Completely unexpected but there it is.
My awe of Stephen King's genius expands with each of his books I read or listen to. If you have enjoyed his work in the past, you will enjoy this book. It both helps to answer matters raised in previous books and, it is fun to read.
By the way Mr. King, when in the hell are you going to make "The Stand" available on Audible. In my opinion it is one of your top two or three novels. Perhaps Mr. Hurt might take a stab at it. In any event, please hurry.
This is one of the finest books I've ever heard. Absolute brilliant and emotional storytelling. This is King at his finest.
It was also great, when later reading the Dark Tower series, to be able to connect some of the characters in here to the overall "Big Picture."
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