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Publisher's Summary

"Joyland is a breathtaking, beautiful, heartbreaking book.... Even the most hardboiled readers will find themselves moved."
—Charles Ardai, Edgar- and Shamus Award-winning editor of Hard Case Crime.

Set in a small-town North Carolina amusement park in 1973, Joyland tells the story of the summer in which college student Devin Jones comes to work as a carny and confronts the legacy of a vicious murder, the fate of a dying child, and the ways both will change his life forever. Joyland is a brand-new novel and has never previously been published.

©2013 Stephen King. All rights reserved. (P)2013 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    3,157
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    592
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Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    376
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    55
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Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Not Stephen King

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

not really, Not even near Stephen King. Story itself was ok. Simple, but not very exciting. Loved Mike.

What about Michael Kelly’s performance did you like?

His performance was very good. Characters stood out as individuals and the story was easy to follow.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Derek
  • Cottonwood, AZ, United States
  • 12-07-13

When I finished it, I wanted to listen again.

You know King can chill you to the bone, but who knew he could warm your heart? This novel does both. I almost didn't purchase this one. I am a big fan of King's horror novels and fantasy, and this one was a coming of age mystery. A friend said it was great, so I took a chance. So glad I did. You will love it. The narration is great as well. Enjoy!

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Good Story - Not too thrilled by Narrator

Would you try another book from Stephen King and/or Michael Kelly?

I love Stephen King. This latest book was a little disappointing in that the narrator did not seem to get into "character" enough in some of the passages. The story line itself was intriguing but the plot seemed to move around too much and it was unclear where the author was going.

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

Predictable.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Michael Kelly?

not really sure

Was Joyland worth the listening time?

Yes - I'm glad I finished it.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Richard
  • Weaverville, NC, United States
  • 12-02-13

Good, fun story.

Joyland is a good, fun story. King avoids his typical pitfall of over writing. The story advances at a good pace, and is over almost too soon. Ironically, I thought it lacked depth, but that didn't stop me from enjoying it. The ghost-y elements are good and creepy, but never exploitative. Kelly's performance matches the characters and the tone of the story well. He crafted unique voices for each character and plays them so well that you never lose track of who is talking.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Louisa
  • Los angeles, CA, United States
  • 12-01-13

Nice book

What did you love best about Joyland?

I loved all the characters they seemed so friendly and warm except for Ed but in the end even him.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I loved Mrs. Shoplaw. She was so endearing to me I just fell in love with her.

What does Michael Kelly bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He gave great voices to all the characters I really felt like I was experiencing the characters as individuals not just some guy reading a book and constantly changing his voice.

Who was the most memorable character of Joyland and why?

Mike of course! He was such a wonderful kid from beginning to end.

Any additional comments?

A bit slow for my taste wish it had more ghost interaction with Lisa Gray but in the end it was a good book for me.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • JMS
  • FL
  • 11-28-13

Another Stephen King Experience

What did you love best about Joyland?

I loved the setting in carny land. Several of his books are set in a similar place. King and I are the same age, and when I read his books they vividly take me back.

What about Michael Kelly’s performance did you like?

He was great! He sounds somewhat like King himself.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • DJEPRR
  • Eustis, FL, United States
  • 11-24-13

King rules...always

What made the experience of listening to Joyland the most enjoyable?

This was a great book but I think the reader is really what took this over the top.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Joyland?

Enjoyed all the early 70s memory joggers

What does Michael Kelly bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Michael Kelly did a fabulous job with this book!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Not your average Stephen King book

Would you listen to Joyland again? Why?

I will listen to this again in a few years.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

Good plot not scary like most King books but I really enjoyed it.

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

Yes.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Jacalyn
  • Cobb, CA, United States
  • 11-16-13

Unusual story

Was an interesting book about carni life and mystery who done it serial killer along with the gentle story of a mother and dying young boy who is clairvoyant. Enjoyable but not a page turner

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Very En-JOY-able!

What made the experience of listening to Joyland the most enjoyable?

I loved listening and learning the carnival/amusement vernacular. That made the story especially interesting to me. This coming of age story of a college man was tender and funny. The story wasn't particularly scary as a standard Steve King story can be, but was enjoyable in the same way that "Stand By Me" wasn't scary, but had some dark human moments, but not too harsh.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

The plot kept me on my seat because I was not sure whether the story was going to get really scary. The ending was good and satisfied the suspense.

What about Michael Kelly’s performance did you like?

Michael Kelly's voice was great. He had voice of a youthful college student. It seemed perfect.

Who was the most memorable character of Joyland and why?

Michael and Devon seemed the most memorable to me for the long run, but the carnival owner and Madam Fortuna stick in my mind.

Any additional comments?

A story that can be read by all.