After trying to read Cell a few years ago, I had given up on King. Well, this collection was a great way to come back. I really enjoyed the stories in this book, even if a few of them were not in King's usual style. The cat story is undoubtedly the freakiest, weirdest one and truly makes you wonder what happened to King as a child. Very enjoyable and a quick read.
Stephen King treats us to a new series of creepy and unsettling tales. With stories written at various points in his career, the collection has some stories that are stronger than others, but all are at least entertaining, at best unforgettable. Not all are strictly "horror" stories, but all pit ordinary men and women against potentially viscious opponents, both natural and unnatural.
My personal favorites were "Gingerbread Girl" "N" "Rest Stop" "Cat From Hell" "Mute" and "The Things They Left Behind".
In the vivid and brutal "Gingerbread Girl" a woman runs from the worst thing that could possibly happen to her, only to find something even worse chasing her.
"N" is a fantastic story of madness and obsession, slightly Lovecraftian and completely engrossing. "Rest Stop" tracks a man trying to become the fiercest version of himself in a situation where anything less could cost him his life.
"Cat From Hell" is just plain weird, freaky, gorey and fantastic.
"Mute" is the story of a man who picks up a mute hitchhiker- with results he could never have imagined.
Finally "The Things They Left Behind" tells the story of a man who skipped work in the World Trade Center on September 11th, and how he's haunted both mentally and physically by his dead coworkers, it is a story that will haunt the reader as much as the character himself.
I'm not a huge Stephen King fan, not because the man can't WRITE, he has an enormous gift; but because in almost every case the story just deteriorates into grotesque (and to me pointless) scenarios. THIS compilation of his short stories (except for one) is wonderful. I know King has written a great many things that don't pander to the sort of horror many in his audience seem to demand of him and I think he's capable of producing real literature. I just don't have the stomach (or the time) to find out which is which. I just got lucky with this one.
This 13-disc collection of recent Stephen King tales will provide you with many hours of entertainment on your commute - or wherever you choose to listen. A variety of narrators bring each story to life. The compositions are varying lengths, and some are better than others, but all live up to King's reputation for master storytelling. The last disc features commentary from the author himself.
This is a great short story collection -- subtle and thought-provoking and sometimes, of course, downright horrrifying. Stephen King explores issues of death and the afterlife in quite a few stories, and as is pretty typical of his works, reveals his horror in the mundane. The best story in the collection by far is "N', never before published, which tells of a world beyond our own and its keepers -- and their descents into madness.