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Publisher's Summary

On an island off the coast of Maine, a man is found dead. There's no identification on the body. Only the dogged work of a pair of local newspapermen and a graduate student in forensics turns up any clues.

But that's just the beginning of the mystery. Because the more they learn about the man and the baffling circumstances of his death, the less they understand. Was it an impossible crime? Or something stranger still...?

No one but Stephen King could tell this story about the darkness at the heart of the unknown and our compulsion to investigate the unexplained. With echoes of Dashiell Hammett's The Maltese Falcon and the work of Graham Greene, one of the world's great storytellers presents a surprising tale that explores the nature of mystery itself.

©2005 Stephen King; (P)2005 Simon & Schuster Inc. All rights reserved. AUDIOWORKS is an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.7 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    323
  • 4 Stars
    262
  • 3 Stars
    226
  • 2 Stars
    93
  • 1 Stars
    60

Performance

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    273
  • 4 Stars
    180
  • 3 Stars
    65
  • 2 Stars
    20
  • 1 Stars
    14

Story

  • 3.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    183
  • 4 Stars
    162
  • 3 Stars
    128
  • 2 Stars
    39
  • 1 Stars
    36
Sort by:
  • Overall

Too many reviewers seem to miss the point.

Don't be scared off by reviewers who expected a formulaic clone, and are angry they got something more complex and nuanced.

All of the vitriol in other reviews seems to come from expectations that as a reader, you deserve clear solutions; that you shouldn't be left to speculate, or actually made to think about a story; that the answer should be spelled out in nice big letters. It would be a shame to see this gem tossed aside because it's not enough like other books.

To start with, this is not a mystery story. It is a story about the nature of mysteries. The point of the novel is not to tell the story of an unexplained death; it's to tell the story of the story, it's impact on those who hear it, and to explore how unanswered questions affect us.

It's fantasy to think that every mystery can be solved, that every loose end can be neatly tied up, and that every story has a tidy ending. This one doesn't, and it's a much better book because of it. Go in to this audiobook with an open mind, and you're sure to enjoy it.

28 of 31 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Gotcha!

King wrote the ultimate gotcha and did it masterfully. If you pick the book based on the cover art you are going to be disappointed. Try reading the story description and imagine how SK would deliver the ultimate, nonstereotypical mystery. Reader beware!! This book will make you think.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Come on - its the journey!

This book is made up of what Stephen King is famous for - developing characters that you get attached to. The hardest part about reading The Stand or The Dark Tower is when it ends and you have to say goodbye to all the characters you've become so accustomed to. If you're looking for a good mystery that has a clean beginning and end, go read Sherlock Holmes. If you want a short glimpse into the lives of two old men in a slow moving town and share their views of the world - you'll really enjoy this.

16 of 18 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Jeremy
  • Springfield, MO, USA
  • 12-20-07

The story of a story

One of the earlier reviewers nailed this story perfectly. This is the story of a story. I have to admit that I am biased. I have read almost everything that Stephen King has written and there is very little that I didn't love. Taking that into account I enjoy this story most because of it's differences from the "normal" King story. The style is still very much King but the tale is unique among his works. All in all, this is a great story and well read, too.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Anthony
  • Woods Cross, UT, United States
  • 10-20-05

CSI - Maine!

If you were judging a book by its cover you might think this is a "Mike Hammer" or "Sam Spade" type novel but you would be wrong. The best way to describe this booklet, is to imagine a CSI episode told to you by two old men who forget how the show ended.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

His perfect exit novel.

If rumors are true, this could well be King's last novel. And he pulled the ultimate surprise on his readers. As expressed in this book, a finished story with all the loose ends tied up neatly makes people happy. An unsolved mystery, though, leaves people unsettled and craving. This book is an example of the premise of its storyline. Read it, grouse about it, but then notice how your mind keeps worrying it and turning it over and over and over....

If you want one of those nice neat packages, this book isn't for you. But, if you want a REAL mystery (ala King style) grab this one.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Short and Great

When I saw this book was 3:49 in length I held back, I'm so use to Kings "usual" novel length books that this seemed a bit on the short side to me, then I remembered his very early short story works and how much I enjoyed them and thought "what the hell, lets give it a try" I'm very glad I did, great read, very enjoyable, but dont be looking for his "scare the hell out of you stuff" this is his Maine kicked back characters spinning a yarn, and King does it flawlessly. Its like Garrison Keillor on a Maine shore instead of a Minnesota lake.
And you ask why 4 stars instead of 5 then? Well I'm selfish, and don't give out many 5's, and no I didn't want it to end after 3:49...but truthfully its perfect just as it is and 5 stars are deserved....but I'm not changing my vote, maybe he'll write MORE next time!
(first time I have heard this narrator but he did a very good Maine accent, and has a solid and enjoyable voice)

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Susan
  • raymond, NH, United States
  • 11-13-12

Not quite up to King Standards

I expected some correlation between the book and the series other than 2 charector names. I was looking for the troubles, the "kid" and a more in depth knowledge of how everything fit together. Not recommended.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

How did they get the TV show Haven from this story

Would you try another book from Stephen King and/or Jeffrey DeMunn?

Sure

If you’ve listened to books by Stephen King before, how does this one compare?

Not as good.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

I guess - I thought the story really went no where and lots of extras details I thought were distracting.

Could you see The Colorado Kid being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

It already was made into a TV show called Haven and aside from the two newspaper guys on a island of the coast of Maine - I have no idea how the show is related to this story.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Watch Haven Instead

I like King's stuff. It is fun to see what the television and film screenplay writers do with his work. Usually it falls short. This is an exception. The television series "Haven," inspired by this short work, is very creative. This is worth listening to, if for no other reason, than it is an interesting to see what the script writers had to start with ... and not much more.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful