Author: Stephen King
Narrator: Craig Wasson
Length: 30 hours and 44 minutes
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Story: Few literary events bring me closer to my book loving roots than the release of a new Stephen King novel. The release of 11/22/63 was no exception. Unfortunately the release date caught me “credit” poor since both my Audible.com and eMusic accounts had already been tapped. I wouldn’t get another credit for over a week… so I talked my sister into letting me borrow one of her credits so that I could get the book on the release date.
I immediately downloaded the book into my audible iphone app and grabbed my headphones. The one thing that I was worried about going into this book was the whole premise of this time traveling portal located in the store room of Al’s diner. The idea of it seems a little too ridiculous and I was worried that the whole book would be spoiled because of it but as I listened, I found myself just accepting it. King doesn’t go into a lot of detail on the how or why of the portal and I think that this ultimately is what makes it so believable. Al simply stumbled into this portal one day and really has no concrete grasp on what it really is. He knows a few of the rules regarding the portal but all of the talk about grand ideas and paradoxes are simply beyond him. Before Jake commits to Al’s plan to travel back in time and save JFK, the paradoxes are what concerns Jake the most. He asks Al, “What if you went back and killed your own grandfather?” to which Al replies, “Why the fuck would you want to do that?”
One of my favorite parts of the book is the detour through Derry, ME. Every minute that Jake spent in Derry gave me the distinct impression that something was not only watching Jake and working against him, but that this presence was also aware of ME. If you have read or listened to Stephen King’s IT then you may have the same reaction.
“Downtown Derry looked only marginally more charming than a dead hooker in a church pew.”
As the book proceeded I found myself totally absorbed in the life of Jake Epping/George Amberson and his quest to right some wrongs. At first blush, Jake’s quest seems fairly straightforward, however Jake quickly learns that “The past is obdurate”. The past doesn’t want to be changed and resists Jake at every turn. This resistance becomes more intense based on the magnitude of the change Jake is making. Obviously the minor changes that Jake makes along the way are child’s play to what is waiting for him in Dallas.
As Jake works toward his goal, the past continues to get in his way nearly killing him several times. Along the way Jake learns first hand that life can indeed turn on a dime.
Audio Production: Honestly, I had no idea who Craig Wasson was. I had never heard of him. However, after listening to this audiobook I fully expect to hear a great deal more of Craig Wasson in the future. He was perfect throughout all 31 hrs of this experience.
Rarely do I enjoy music being used in the production of an audiobook.. but the music at the end of 11/22/63 was the perfect finishing touch.
Overall: As usual, I am blown away by the talent wielded by Stephen King.This novel is incredible. 11/22/63 lingers well after those last few moments. In my opinion, this book is another Stephen King classic and the narration on the audiobook couldn’t be better. What more could you want?
If you aren’t already a member of Audible.com then you could get this book or any other book for free!
Disclosure: I sweet talked my sister into letting me use one of her audible credits on this book :-)