11/22/63 Review

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Grant87

Well-Known Member
Jan 3, 2015
386
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After finishing this one recently, it’s safe to say 11/22/63 is one of my favorite King novels thus far. It has a little bit of everything: suspense, historical fiction, conspiracies, and even a great love story.

The JFK assassination is a topic that has been debated and written about ceaselessly since it occurred. The number of books and related theories is mind-boggling. This is clearly a passionate subject for King, and it shows throughout each page of 11/22/63. The man definitely did his homework, shall we say. He doesn’t attempt to mask his disdain for Oswald in the novel either.

One of my favorite aspects of King’s writing is his ability to create such a vivid setting in his novels. While reading 11/22/63, I felt like I was transported back to that time period along with Jake. The clothes, the cars, the music, the smoking—it all added to the nostalgic feel.

For a so-called “horror” writer, King can sure craft one heck of a love story. The relationship between Jake and Sadie reminded me of Johnny and Sarah in The Dead Zone. The whole time I was just hoping against hope that they would end up together.

One aspect of the novel I didn’t much care for was the explanation of the Yellow Card Man. I felt that part was sort of thrown together hastily. However, that wasn’t a huge part of the novel, so it didn’t affect my overall thoughts too much.

Loved the ending. Absolutely perfect. I haven’t read the alternate ending yet, but I’m glad SK used Joe’s idea.

Overall, 11/22/63 is a Top 5 King novel for me. I could write endlessly about it, but I’m keeping my review rather brief. This novel had a little of everything evoked many emotions for me while reading it. I must admit, the ending choked me up a little. It was a very fitting end to a fantastic novel.

Rating: 9/10
 

Doc Creed

Well-Known Member
Nov 18, 2015
16,422
77,192
42
United States
I'm reading this again currently and I just made it to Chapter 8. There was a part I'd forgotten, that made me laugh, when . . .
Jake, aka George Amberson, is leaving Derry and as he drives by the drugstore he gives Norbert Keene the finger. Chapter ends. LOL
I agree with your assessment, Grant. To me, this novel felt hard earned, plowed, and sowed with tears. Under the Dome, on the other hand, felt too artificial and generic (there were a few loveable characters, but not many) and King spreads himself too thin. He succeeded magnificently with The Stand; every character was a living breathing person...UTD, not so much. 11/22/63 proves, at least to me, that King still has stamina and plenty of magic in his back pocket.
 

RichardX

Well-Known Member
Sep 26, 2006
1,702
4,248
I would rank this one up there with The Shining, The Stand, The Dead Zone, and It or the Green Mile as King's best writing and storytelling. And 11.22.63 is the best book he has written in the last twenty years or more. The JFK assassination is referenced directly or indirectly in many of King's novels. Even the climatic scene in Carrie where she is doused in blood and her male companion is killed at a moment of glory in a public setting is arguably taken right out of the events of the JFK assassination with Jackie Kennedy and her pink outfit.
 

doowopgirl

very avid fan
Aug 7, 2009
6,839
24,279
61
dublin ireland
I'm reading this again currently and I just made it to Chapter 8. There was a part I'd forgotten, that made me laugh, when . . .
Jake, aka George Amberson, is leaving Derry and as he drives by the drugstore he gives Norbert Keene the finger. Chapter ends. LOL
I agree with your assessment, Grant. To me, this novel felt hard earned, plowed, and sowed with tears. Under the Dome, on the other hand, felt too artificial and generic (there were a few loveable characters, but not many) and King spreads himself too thin. He succeeded magnificently with The Stand; every character was a living breathing person...UTD, not so much. 11/22/63 proves, at least to me, that King still has stamina and plenty of magic in his back pocket.
That was exactly how I felt about UTD. I could never put my finger on what annoyed me so much about it. I thought it was the lame ending. But you got it.
 

Neesy

#1 fan (Annie Wilkes cousin) 1st cousin Mom's side
May 24, 2012
59,406
226,418
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
11/22/63 is the book that made me a King fan.

I'd read half the DT series and Eyes of the Dragon but in between them I picked up this. Wizard and Glass and this made me the constant reader.
Me too (sort of) - I had been a King fan for many years (what seems like eons ago) then lost touch somehow in the early 90s.

11/22/63 not only brought me back but also introduced me to the SKMB - such a great place! :m_adore:
 
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MarkS73

Well-Known Member
Nov 24, 2014
350
1,678
45
Netherlands
One of my favourite King books. Especially because of the way he describes Jake's experiences in the past, the way things smell different etc.
Before this book i used to fantasize about things like this, Stephen King wrote it down:)
 
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