11/22/63: A Novel

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Simon and Schuster, Nov 8, 2011 - Fiction - 864 pages
1173 Reviews
One of the Ten Best Books of The New York Times Book Review
Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize
Soon to be a miniseries from Hulu starring James Franco


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 readers on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

It begins with Jake Epping, a thirty-five-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 fifty 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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Excellent novel. Having read IT a few times in my life, I thoroughly enjoyed the portions of the book based in Derry. It was almost as though I was reading a story about my hometown and I enjoyed how King created an overlap between the two universes.
As usual, King's characters and environments are rich with detail. King sticks to his usual formula of describing just enough to allow you to paint a mental picture without being too verbose. I am easily bored by authors that feel they need to describe every detail of something - I read to escape and imagination is a big part of that.
5 stars. Highly recommend.
 

good story

User Review  - Nancy - Target

very entertaining , time travel , period memories of the times before the JFK assassination Read full review

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Contents

PART
1
The Janitors Father
97
PART 3
223
PART 4
351
PART 6
602
The Green Card Man
749
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. His recent work includes The Bill Hodges Trilogy—Mr. Mercedes (an Edgar Award winner for Best Novel), Finders Keepers, and End of Watch; the short story collection The Bazaar of Bad Dreams; Revival; Doctor Sleep, and Under the Dome. His novel 11/22/63 was named a top ten book of 2011 by The New York Times Book Review and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller. His epic series, The Dark Tower, is the basis for a major motion picture from Sony. He is the recipient of the 2014 National Medal of Arts and the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. He lives in Bangor, Maine, with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.

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