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11-22-63 Audiobook

11-22-63: A Novel

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In his critically-acclaimed epic, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it. Named Audible’s Best Book of 2011, 11-22-63 easily holds its own among King’s earlier classics, and Craig Wasson, handpicked by King to narrate, is nothing short of amazing: he has a fine actor's gift for performing the novel's wide range of characters, emotions, and action with great authenticity. — Chris

Publisher's Summary

On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back?

In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

It begins with Jake Epping, a 35-year-old English teacher in Lisbon Falls, Maine, who makes extra money teaching GED classes. He asks his students to write about an event that changed their lives, and one essay blows him away: a gruesome, harrowing story about the night more than 50 years ago when Harry Dunning’s father came home and killed his mother, his sister, and his brother with a sledgehammer. Reading the essay is a watershed moment for Jake, his life - like Harry’s, like America’s in 1963 - turning on a dime.

Not much later his friend Al, who owns the local diner, divulges a secret: his storeroom is a portal to the past, a particular day in 1958. And Al enlists Jake to take over the mission that has become his obsession - to prevent the Kennedy assassination.

So begins Jake’s new life as George Amberson, in a different world - of Ike and JFK and Elvis, of big American cars and sock hops and cigarette smoke everywhere. From the dank little city of Derry, Maine (where there’s Dunning business to conduct), to the warmhearted small town of Jodie, Texas, where Jake falls dangerously in love, every turn is leading, eventually of course, to a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and to Dallas, where the past becomes heart-stoppingly suspenseful - and where history might not be history anymore. Time-travel has never been so believable. Or so terrifying.

©2011 Stephen King. All Rights Reserved. (P)2011 Simon & Schuster, Inc

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (39301 )
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Performance
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  •  
    A. Navar BENSENVILLE, IL, US 06-28-12
    A. Navar BENSENVILLE, IL, US 06-28-12 Member Since 2006

    Ravantra

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Time travel, history and the nature of fate."
    If you could sum up 11-22-63 in three words, what would they be?

    Harmonizing Obdurate Past.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The amazing amount of tension that build though out the story. What a great ride!


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The first time Jake goes into the past. I love the descriptions of an earlier time.


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

    It made me shudder a few times and gave me a yearning for the past. A truly well written book that provokes one to consider the nature of fate.


    Any additional comments?

    Get this book, one of King's best.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Riley Bellevue, NE, United States 06-27-12
    Riley Bellevue, NE, United States 06-27-12 Member Since 2014
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    "Going full circle with no gain."

    Now, before I get started I just wanted to point out that there's a reason Stephen King is the world's bestselling novelist. I've loved his books since picking up The Dead Zone when I was in high school.

    However, I've come to realize that his longer works are in dire need of some serious edit trimming. There are many points in his longer works that seem to wander off the trail and go on and on about something that has no real purpose and doesn't move the story forward. One of the many things I've learned about writing is that if it doesn't move the story ahead then it should be deleted. During these side stories I find my mind wondering about other things going on around me. The grip of the story simply loses me many times throughout the book.

    Don't get me wrong, it is a good story, but you could have an even better story by cutting this novel in half and doing away with extra stuff thrown in to bulk up the novel.

    The Stand, It, Under the Dome, the Dark Tower series and several others would have been stronger stories by cutting sentences, paragraphs and even entire chapters.

    And by saying in my headline "Going full circle with no gain" can be understood when you listen to or read the book to the final page.



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Buzz Scottsdale, AZ, United States 06-27-12
    Buzz Scottsdale, AZ, United States 06-27-12 Listener Since 2006
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    "Science Fiction as Literature"

    “Under the Dome” was the first Stephen King book I had read, and it resulted in my acquiring respect for King as a superior writer. “11-23-63: A Novel“ is a work of science fiction, a genre which excited me as a teen-ager, but has held no attraction since, until, that is, “11-23-63: A Novel“ which absorbed me into its make-believe world of time travel, a world enhanced by the book’s historical references to the Kennedy assassination, which are completely accurate, the result of King’s thorough and meticulous research. There is nothing predictable about the plot, which is endlessly creative and, thanks to King’s literary skill, believable. The book was, perhaps, longer than necessary or longer than I would have liked, but it was so exciting and well done that, in the end, I did not begrudge the time it took me to read it. This is a literary work of remarkable creativity, by a popular story teller who really knows now to write.

    The reader, Craig Wasson, was perfect for this book, and his excellent performance (and it was a performance worthy of the theatre) was indispensable to my enjoyment of this audio book experience.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel Virginia Beach, VA, United States 06-26-12
    Daniel Virginia Beach, VA, United States 06-26-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Great story and great narration."

    11/22/63 is Stephen King at his best in my opinion. The descriptive details are what makes his books so hard to put down or in this case, hard to stop listening too. Craig Wasson did a great job narrating the story. I would recommend this audio book to anyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carlene 06-26-12
    Carlene 06-26-12
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    "A MUST READ!"
    Would you listen to 11-22-63 again? Why?

    Yes, and have. Very intriguing story, and felt as if I was able to picture the scenes in my mind, and it was very difficult to turn it off.


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

    Yes, wish I had been able to listen to it without any interruption!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    t smith USA 06-26-12
    t smith USA 06-26-12 Member Since 2012

    t smith

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    "Couldn't stop listening"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, it's a well-written and interesting story. Loved the characters.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The voice of the reader. Wasson does such a great job!


    Have you listened to any of Craig Wasson’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I haven't, but he's my favorite reader so far!! Loved the John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart, and Alfred Hitchcock voices that came out-- entertaining!


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

    yes


    Any additional comments?

    I hated all the bad language, but the story was great!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Audun Wangen Kongsvinger, Norway 06-24-12
    Audun Wangen Kongsvinger, Norway 06-24-12 Member Since 2011

    I'm a tech geek who love stories with a twist, especially fantasy and science fiction.

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    "All time favorite and must read"

    This is definitely the best science fiction I've ever read, and one of my all time favourites of any genre. Stephen King's stories seldom take hold of me like this story did. Pacing, attention to details and an enchanting plot makes it impossible to put the book down.

    So many things could have gone wrong with this book. It contains time travel, a love story, thrilling murders and investigation and characters from both the 60s and present. King really makes it hard for himself, but delivers in every category.

    The narration is beyond excellent, and fits the mood of the book and the character of Jake Epping perfectly. Warmly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katherine Hampden, ME, United States 06-24-12
    Katherine Hampden, ME, United States 06-24-12
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    "Well worth it"

    I loved this book. It's ingenious, brilliantly written, very well performed. The accents used by the narrator were a little off now and then, but they did not distract and usually added to the listening experience.

    I thought maybe it was going to go the way of many of King's books and get all "monster-y" at the end, but it didn't. It was great. Very satisfying, very enjoyable.

    And there's a nice little tidbit of an afterword by King at the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kimberly 06-24-12
    Kimberly 06-24-12
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    "Rather a thought provoking book"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    As a book that ponders upon the idea of changing the past and what the cost could be, I would recommend it to any reader. If you do not have an open mind and a sense of wonder at the world, you may not get it, or like it. If your mind is open to the mind blowing possibilities of traveling to another era and changing the world outcome, then this book is for you. From an abusive father to the President, every step is worth the listen.


    Have you listened to any of Craig Wasson’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This is the first book I have had the pleasure of hearing Mr. Wasson's voice. I look forward to the next experience.


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

    I listen to books while driving, and at hourly breaks. If I had the time, this would be one of the best for a listening marathon.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Heath Charleston, SC 06-24-12
    Heath Charleston, SC 06-24-12

    Reviews and opinions are my own.

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    "Good book but I guess that I expect more from King"
    If you’ve listened to books by Stephen King before, how does this one compare?

    I understand that King has wanted to write this book for some time and enjoyed his perspective on the pivotal moment of American history. However, the story can't hold up to his earlier works in quality or entertainment. One could say that I'm holding Mr King to a higher standard than other authors.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm sure that this book was a great undertaking for Mr King to research the events leading up to President Kennedy's assassination. However, I felt that the book was oddly constructed, even for a time-travel novel. Some time in the 'land of ago' with Jake seemed to drone on for much too long while other times we jumped right past a critical detail with hardly a mention of the events surrounding it. The love story angle was sweet but often stretched on longer than needed.
    The entire premise of saving JFK and stopping all of the bad things that happened as a result of his death was a poorly constructed history, especially given the meticulous research conducted on the events leading to his assassination. JFK's position in the civil rights movement as president is widely recognized and his plans for how to handle the Vietnam mess are a topic of strong debate among historians. However, the 2012 view of JFK in the book sees his Vietnam views clearly and ignores his position/actions on civil rights as president.
    I thought that the ending was decent but not incredible. It felt predictable though some details were clever. Some of the symbolism that foreshadowed things was too obvious and some details of the portal were not fleshed out in a satisfying manner.
    I still recommend this book to anyone but the reviews on here led me to expect something a lot better than what the story can deliver.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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