Book Rating (161)
Narrator Rating (70)

11/22/63: A Novel

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Craig Wasson

30 Hours 45 Minutes

Simon & Schuster

November 2011

Audio Book 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.

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Reviews

  • Judy F.

    A long book (my copy 25 discs, 30.75 hours) that, nevertheless, I found completely riveting. Mr. King just keeps on getting better. Narrator Craig Wasson was excellent, sounding like he was telling a story rather than reading. Definitely one of my favorites.

    Book Rating

  • Anonymous

    Entertaining book posing many interesting "what ifs" surrounding the assassination of JFK. The book has 2 shortfalls, in opinion:1) it is way too long and gets a bit repetitive/slow at several points; 2) the author tends to interject his own political views, which detract from the overall enjoyment.

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  • Elizabeth Quivey

    I stopped reading Stephen King a few years back -- don\'t really like horror, thrillers -- but this one intrigued me because of the subject. Loved it -- character development, the what if\'s -- & the history I lived thru as a teenager. Despite the length (25 discs) I wanted it to go on. King is an excellent story teller & I plan to go back to some of the previous titles I missed.

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  • Antony Dale

    I love this book. One of Stephen King\'s best! The narrator really keeps engaged in this book.

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  • David Payne

    I absolutely loved this story. It was both incredibly suspenseful (to the point of being stressful) and beautiful. I haven\'t read much of King\'s work but I will now. The protagonist was relatable and even likable. His relationships, especially his love interest were touching. The narrator is very, very good. The amount of feeling he puts into his reading is exceptional. The only gripe I might have about it is his representation of Sady. It bothered me a little but by no means ruined the immersion. All in all, this was an amazing listening experience.

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  • renee timas

    Always glanced at this book in the bookstores but wasn't quite in the mood to travel back to the Kennedy era. Stumbled a upon it again on audio books and after a sample preview I was HOOKED! Narration was the bomb and the story line engaging. Would highly recommend to anyone who is thinking twice about it..you won't be sorry.

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  • taylor ross

    agreed way too long. If pages 200 through 600 were cut in half, the overall story still would have held up and been so much more enjoyable. I love history, this book has a great premise and i\'d give it a \"good\" if you make it to the end, but make sure you dont have anything else to read or anything more important to do once you hit the middle of the book. Like I said, loved the idea of the book, way different than most of SK stuff in some respects. Historica, sci-fi, love story, drama fiction, with plenty of catch you off guard Stephen King horror moments

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  • Rochelle Rector

    Couldn't wait to see what was going to happen next!

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  • Janice Mattioli

    An editor should\'ve cut this book in half! I mean, a blow by blow description of a high school play and the students\' performances? It felt like at least an hour. The narrator is atrocious - sounds like W.C. Fields as the FBI agent, his Russian accent sounds Austrian. What a massive disappointment

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  • Kevin Hurt

    30 hours of listening and you still wanted more. A great love story and facts were accurate. I will listen to it again!

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