Revival

Narrated by: David Morse
Length: 13 hrs and 23 mins
Categories: Fiction, Horror
4 out of 5 stars (51 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A spectacularly dark and electrifying novel about addiction, religion, music, and what might exist on the other side of life.

In a small New England town, in the early '60s, a shadow falls over a small boy playing with his toy soldiers. Jamie Morton looks up to see a striking man, the new minister. Charles Jacobs, along with his beautiful wife, will transform the local church. The men and boys are all a bit in love with Mrs Jacobs; the women and girls - including Jamie's mother and beloved sister - feel the same about Reverend Jacobs. With Jamie, the Reverend shares a deeper bond, based on their fascination with simple experiments in electricity.

Then tragedy strikes the Jacobs family, the preacher curses God, mocking all religious belief, and is banished from the shocked town.

Jamie has demons of his own. In his mid-30s, he is living a nomadic lifestyle of bar-band rock and roll. Addicted to heroin, stranded, desperate, he sees Jacobs again - a showman on stage, creating dazzling 'portraits in lightning' - and their meeting has profound consequences for both men. Their bond becomes a pact beyond even the Devil's devising, and Jamie discovers that revival has many meanings. Because for every cure there is a price....

This rich and disturbing novel spans five decades on its way to the most terrifying conclusion Stephen King has ever written. It's a masterpiece from King, in the great American tradition of Nathaniel Hawthorne and Edgar Allan Poe.

©2014 Stephen King (P)2014 Simon & Schuster

Critic Reviews

"The most remarkable storyteller in modern American literature." (Mark Lawson, Guardian)
"America's greatest living novelist." (Lee Child)
"King's gift of storytelling is unrivalled. His ferocious imagination is unlimited." (George Pelecanos)
"King is a very remarkable and singular writer. He can catch dialogue, throw away an observation or mint a simile, sometimes, brilliantly . . . Storytelling is everything - and by golly does he know how to carry the reader." ( Observer)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

WOW! Just WOW

It's been a while since Stephen King wrote a book that really grabbed me but this blew me away! A tight, well crafted story that feels almost like a a true bow of respect to the greats who came before: Lovecraft, Matheson, & even Burroughs.

Both entertaining, endearing, and existential, Revival touched on the big questions that plague us all regarding religion, life, and what it is that makes a person who they are and who they become. I could talk all day about what it is that made this book so enjoyable and worthy but it's impossible to do so without spoilers and this is one of those books you need to come at with a clean slate.

Awesome read, well worth the credit and the time.

2 people found this helpful

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What can I say apart from get this book.

By now the narrator sounds like SK to me. Having listened to Bag of Bones I do know what SK souds likebut still....
The story. If your expecting a preachy carnival type of evangelism. Fear not. What you will find is a fith business. A change agent, a man.
The writing. Thisbook is written so well that the moment I finished listening to it i started from the start.

All in all, I can tell you now this book will be downloaded again and enjoyed again. It is that good!

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Excellent reader.

Not his best book. But it was still enjoyable. The performance was brilliant. I loved the characters in the book.

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Not your usual Stephen King

I'm still not really sure what to make of this book. It appears to be a biography, without much story or direction, almost up to the last 30 minutes or so; only then does the real Stephen King shine through.
It also felt as if the book could end within the next few minutes, almost all the way through.
I certainly enjoyed it, but did not get that tugging 'thrill' that normally accompanies King' stories.

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Not one of his best!

This is not one of SKs best at all. I am not sure why, but since his accident he has written some odd ones, and this is one of them. It starts off very slowly, in fact it was quite boring for the first 4 hours, but I thought "it will get better", but all it got was odder and odder. Still I listened right up to the end, and all I can say is, I should not have bothered.
I cannot say the narrator was the trouble, he did what he could with the story he was given, but the story WAS the trouble I think, was it horror, I guess so, I know I will probably lose sleep over it, and I sure will try staying alive, FOREVER.

1 person found this helpful

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Yawn zzzzzz

Not frightening as the hype. Bored to tears . Not on my recommendation list of books to buy. Sorry Mr King

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  • ms
  • 05-28-15

Fantastic

Wonderful story very well read, easy to get lost in ... Worth the purchase
On my second listen

4 people found this helpful

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  • Danger King
  • 03-17-15

Great narrator, fantastic story.

Yet again Stephen King nails it! An epic story of a young boy and young pastor crossing paths which will forever change both. It spans decades and keeps you engaged throughout. Narrator is brilliant. Recommended.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Jennifer
  • 07-17-15

Kept me hooked

Well recommended, perhaps not the usual horror we are used to but it's an undertone, I couldn't stop listening. Would recommend to all Stephen king fans and everyone else too!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Natasha
  • 03-17-15

brilliant!!

Absolutely brilliant, one of Stephen kings best!! I have been and will always be a die hard fan of Stephen King's writing! Continue the excellent work

3 people found this helpful

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  • Mike
  • 05-09-16

a bit slow going.

It was ok, but felt like the story never teally got going until last couple of chapters.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Mr D C Finnimore
  • 05-04-16

An interesting take on the Frankenstein story

Some good ideas here and an attempt to build an epic life spanning story, but the characters don't feel fully fleshed out and many aspects are quickly glazed over. the final reveal/confrontation feels like a mid-novel event and I was left expecting a greater twist or shock which didn't arrive. not a bad read, but certainly not one of King's best.

2 people found this helpful

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  • BrianW
  • 12-06-15

Beautifully told tale..

Great story, light to dark, very dark.
Probably one of SK's best, a fascinating read. Jamie the lead character, not the 5th business, is very likeable and SK has applied his gift to craft Jamie into someone we can all relate to.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Joe
  • 12-05-15

Good old King

Enjoyable read. Told memoir style by the main character from a very young age into his later life and the strange dealings he has throughout with his "5th Business". Its not an exciting thriller by any means, rather a story that drags you in and builds up slowly to its climax.
A climax, by the way, that the synopsis calls "the most terrifying conclusion Stephen King has ever written" - This is very far from the truth. Don't get me wrong, its not bad but its not exactly stellar either.
The writing and the characters are what makes this book really stand out, it's King at his best. The narration is spot on too.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Rory
  • 10-31-15

Another brilliant audiobook

My favourite audiobook is "under the dome" by Stephen King (vocal acting performance ANDstory/chattier development etc. is the BEST I've heard) but this is also brilliant. I have come to realise why Stephen King is such a household name. He is just the best.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Scritty
  • 10-25-15

King's Homage To Lovecraft

Would you listen to Revival again? Why?

Maybe, It's a decent book. The end did jar a little and seemed a little "Bolted on". As usual the characterisations were superb.

What other book might you compare Revival to, and why?

Comparisons with another King book? Duma Key maybe. Similar pace, solitude of the main character and "bolt on" ending

What does David Morse bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

David Morse doesn't shy away from adding some emotion to the story. Often emphasising points that I might not have thought to if I was just reading. Editorial nuance? Maybe, but all in all very good.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

The end was genuinely scary. It didn't live with me for long as it covers thoughts I've had about life and the universe many times before. But it was well written if a little incongruous.
It did make me pick up my guitar again.

Any additional comments?

Solid SK book. Not in his top 10, but a decent read.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Sharon
  • 01-01-15

Fantastic

Stephen King is an exceptional storyteller and this one doesn't disappoint. The narrator made this book come to life.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-12-19

some of the best prose king has done

super solid entry by king. light on horror but gripping until the end. great VO work too

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-08-18

Bravo!

A fantastic story, totally engrossing and narrated beautifully. It left me with a feeling of having been on a journey, I love books that do that! I cannot wait for the movie!

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  • David
  • 12-10-17

a bit out there

interestng concept. the ending was a bit odd but still good for a weekly commute on the Hume. also a little disturbing g.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-12-16

boring

not one of King's better offerings. couldnt bear to listen past the first 5 chapters. returned it.

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  • Linda
  • 02-19-16

Something something something happened...

The story begins about six year old Jamie living in a small town when Reverend Charles Jacobs comes into his life and then leaves some time later. Their paths cross again many years later when Jamie is a guitar playing drug addict. Some parts mirrored Stephen King's own life and was eerily sounding like non-fiction fiction. Not long after this it slowly started losing me. I got bored. It was mundane. Then it got silly (even for Stephen King) and about 3/4 into it I stopped listening. I am a fan of Stephen King but I'm sorry to say that I cannot recommend this book.

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  • Helen
  • 02-13-16

Loved it

Would you try another book written by Stephen King or narrated by David Morse?

Definitely, in fact I am picking them off one by one.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Jamie of course. In fact I fell a bit in love with him.

Have you listened to any of David Morse’s other performances? How does this one compare?

No. Will have to find some more.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

Yes, I have already pictured which actors would be best suited to the characters

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  • Kimberley Connery
  • 02-06-16

Recommended

An intriguing tale of obsession and friendship. I enjoyed this book most of the way through but the ending still has me perplexed. I feel it belongs amongst Lisey's Story and Under the Dome in King's library, and would recommend reading for yourself and making up your own mind. The narrator was good, his child voices were a little cheesy but I settled into his groove after a while.

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  • Peter
  • 07-21-15

Classic King

Revival is a return to form for Stephen King. The story is well paced and builds relentlessly to an ending that will stay with you long after you have finished. If at the halfway point you think you know where it is going, I bet you are wrong.

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  • Lea Mccarney
  • 06-15-15

Stephen King back to form!

After being so disappointed with Mr Mercedes I was not expecting great things from Revival. I got a pleasant surprise!
The story is gripping with an excellent balance of sci fi, horror and thriller. In fact it was hard to guess which way the story would turn.
The story is thought provoking and builds well with excellent character development. As a long time fan I am so glad to again experience the thrill a Stephen King novel gives!