In a pulls-no-punches essay intended to provoke rational discussion, Stephen King sets down his thoughts about gun violence in America. Anger and grief in the wake of the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School are palpable in this urgent piece of writing, but no less remarkable are King's keen thoughtfulness and composure as he explores the contours of the gun-control issue and constructs his argument for what can and should be done.
King's earnings from the sale of this essay will go to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.
Stephen King is the author of 11/22/63, Under the Dome, Carrie, The Shining, and many other best-selling works.
"The overwhelming response from readers of the Kindle Single edition of Guns underscores the great need for thoughtful discourse on the issue of guns in America…I’m thrilled Audible is bringing Guns to the quickly growing audience of audiobook listeners." (Stephen King)
©2013 Stephen King (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
"There are a handful of subjects in America so emotional and polarizing that the national dialogue around them amounts to little more than a shouting match. Chief among these is the subject of guns. In this intimate and moving Kindle Single, Stephen King employs all his gifts as writer and citizen to address gun violence in America. But why should we care what Stephen King has to say? As it turns out, there are a number of reasons. Despite his "liberal creds," King is an unapologetic gun owner himself. He is also the author of a novel--published under the pseudonym Richard Bachman--that has served as a "possible accelerant" for at least four real-life high school shooters. King had his publisher take that book off the market long ago, but the guns and the occasional bursts of unfathomable violence remain. When division is everywhere, is it possible for someone to argue passionately for the middle road? That is what King seeks to do here--this is a frank and thoughtful contribution to a dialogue in dire need of voices from the 'all-but-deserted middle.'" (Chris Schluep, Amazon.com)
Christian Rummel reads this with the same passion King used to write it. While Mr. King's perspective as the author of Rage is interesting, and it is easy to understand his need to speak out, you are only going to like this if you already agree with him.
The fact that you can tell a person's political bent by the number of stars he gives this work is the saddest (and most telling) fact of all. In that aspect, Stephen King's stated goal of provoking a reasonable debate has failed. Not his fault, really, but that's "the way it shakes out".
Putting in his own words what people have been trying to say about this debate for some time, as well as offering so of the same answers that seem to be the most reasonable one out there. Speaking as a gun owner brought up by in a family of them who father was in vet I have respect for them but I know what they are for and they are not for. They aren't toys that aren't tools they are for killing. when you Hunt you kill something, King reminds us what guns are for, and what we should be thinking about.
"those who stand firmly, even hysterically, against any kind of control love their neighbors and their communities, but harbor a distrust of the federal government so deep it borders on paranoia (and in some case passes that border without so much as a howdy-do at the check point)" and "If Lanza had been reloading after shooting his way in, she migh have succeeeded. He was crazy, but he was also a scrawny wisp of a kid, the bushmaster was his equalizer, he had plenty of ammo left, so he shot and killed Hocksprung before she could get to him. I wish with all my heart that she had tackled him and beat that crazy little *beep* head bloody against the floor, and gotten a medal from the president on national tv. she was too brave to die the way she did"
This adds a voice to the debate that is well thought out and well done
Ardent Audible listener with a long commute!
It seems important to mention one's "creds" in writing reviews of Stephen King's "Guns" so I will start with mine: I served in the US Army, and was honorably discharged as a SGT/E-5. I qualified Expert with an M16 (the civilian equivalent is an AR15), and I'm still proud of that.
I also have a copy of "Rage", in the compilation of "The Bachman Books" that I purchased the year it was published, 1985. I remember reading "The Bachan Books" the same week I purchased it. I loved "The Running Man" and liked "Roadwork", and while the plot of "Rage" was intriguing, the writing was so sophomoric, it was painful. I found out later King wrote "Rage" while he was in high school, so there was an explanation. I read "Rage" once again, in 1996, when I heard Michael Carneal shot classmates in West Paducah, Kentucky. It sounded so much like the story I'd read 11 years earlier, I wanted to make sure I wasn't imagining the similarity. I wasn't.
King's essay "Guns" starts with a scathing social commentary, "That's How it Shakes Out." It doesn't matter if the first station you've got programmed into your remote is FoxNEWS and Ann Coulter is your dream date, or if you are so far left you contribute frequently to KPFK: the media cycle for mass shootings is the same.
King argues forcefully - and sometimes vulgarly - for gun control. King is a gun owner himself, and does not want to disarm the country - but he does want assault weapons banned, and large magazines banned; and he wants background checks.
What King argues isn't new or innovative, but the writing is vintage King. There are phrases I remember from "The Shawshank Redemption" (the movie adaptation, not the original novella "Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption") and the unabridged edition of "The Stand." There's also a theme in the first and last section of "Guns" that runs through "The Library Policeman" and "The Ten O'Clock People." The theme was chilling in the stories, and the probability it's a reality is startling.
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I am undecided on this issue however I was disappointed with my favorite story teller's attempt to cobble together a cogent argument. For someone that can easily move between horror, fantasy, and baseball, his efforts fell short given his capabilities. Very disappointed.
First chapter . . . Shakedown, had merits.
This was presented as an unbiased opinion on this issue. You pay to be yelled at, called names and abused by this author. I have many of his books in my library and absolutely love most of them. This is not an unbiased discussion.
Yes, the narrator did a very good job.
It did have a few good points before he started acting angry about people who disagree with his opinions.
Why does everyone that has access to the media feel they are an authority on politics. Is there anyone that can have a discussion or express their opinion without getting angry with people who do not share their view?
Of course Stephen King has a great voice and reading style, but this essay falls very short of being complete. He mentions several things early on that he fails to follow through on. He is misleading in that he draws the reader in by leadng you to believe that it just might be an unbiased essay. It could not be further from the truth. Before you reach the end he shows a very mouthy liberal bias. His essay becomes very foul mouthed and then it becomes hard to really listen to it. Yes, Mr. King, you should stick to your fiction books.......and clean up your potty mouth. The essay was almost worth the 69 cents I paid for it.
I don't know why I get so surprised every time he writes something that isn't scary ( And I love his scary stuff) and it is REALLY GOOD WRITING! He is such a good writer and this is right to the point. I wish everyone had to read it.
As this was an essay, I cannot rate it in the same manner that I would grade a "story".
While most opinions regarding gun control are stridently one-sided and make no effort to consider opposing view, Mr. King does attempt to be fair-minded. However, it is clear where his sympathies lie.
Well written and cogent, the essay provides reasoned food for thought on a subject that stirs great debate.
It was a surprise how "fair" Stephan King is in "GUNS". Although I do not agree with all he says, he is sympathic with gun owners.
Christian was very believeable and interesting.
I would reccommend it to gun owners as well as non owners.
Very even handed, shooting down extremes and sillyness on both sides of the issue. Highly recommended reading.
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