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Misery by Stephen King
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Misery (edition 1987)

by Stephen King

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9,649136299 (3.94)218
Member:JohnnyOstentatious
Title:Misery
Authors:Stephen King
Info:Unabridged Audiobook (1992), Audio CD
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
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Misery by Stephen King

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English (128)  Danish (2)  French (2)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  Hungarian (1)  Spanish (1)  All (136)
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Stephen King and October certainly seem to go hand in hand. Misery, one of King’s most beloved novels, tells the harrowing story of an incapacitated author trapped in the home of a mentally unstable fan. As the plot creeps forward, things go from mildly uncomfortable to incredibly disturbing. The novel’s small cast of characters creates an emotionally charged and suspenseful atmosphere, perfect for a Halloween read.

The main character, Paul Sheldon, a popular romance author, possesses an incredibly strong voice, which captures the reader from the very beginning of the novel. Paul mostly shirks off his fame, as he strives to write more than just mere romance. His dry sense of humor and acerbic wit make it extremely difficult not to love him. The novel begins with him finishing up work on his new book, which he hopes will cement him in history as an author of real literature.

Annie Wilkes, Paul’s self-proclaimed “number one fan,” finds Paul on the side of the road after a car accident, and she brings him to her home to help him recuperate. Annie dotes upon Paul religiously, but she is also a strict disciplinarian. Her prudish tendencies lead her to commit rather contradictory and often gruesome actions. The plot takes a dark turn once the reader sees how far her fanaticism can go.

Misery is the name of the main character in Paul’s romance series. She also happens to be Annie’s favorite character. While Misery has brought Paul much wealth, she has also given him much grief…and unfortunately, she will soon cause him much pain.

Every so often, King interrupts the plot with elements of meta-fiction in the form of chapters that Paul writes under Annie’s watchful eye. Paul writes under duress and with a subpar typewriter, which King manifests realistically on the page. Impressively, both plot-lines remain equally interesting. They also parallel each other in that they both become more outrageous as the plot moves forward.

Stephen King’s Misery holds its weight as a truly terrifying novel because it is so human. The lack of a supernatural element, which is often typical in his body of work, adds an intense sense of realism to the story. The emphasis on Paul’s will to survive even as he’s verbally and physically abused amplifies one of our greatest fears: death. And yet, how much evil can a man endure before he loses his mind? Anyone would be profoundly affected by this dreadful situation. Luckily, as readers, we can just observe and enjoy the impending nightmares. ( )
  Codonnelly | Feb 13, 2017 |
Misery was my first Stephen King novel and one of my favourites. It tells about a famous writer who has fallen victim to a terrible car crash and the person who takes care of him and heals him turns out to be his biggest fan, Annie Wilkes. Of course, it turns out his biggest fan also happens to be his biggest nightmare and if you've read the book and/or seen the movie, you'll see why. She truly is a celebrity's worst nightmare. Very engaging, and the last fifty pages had be gripping my seat hoping for Paul, the protagonist, to get out okay, though of course traumatised by the ordeal. ( )
  kyndyleizabella | Jan 23, 2017 |
I just finished, and I don't know if I will be able to sleep tonight. This was much scarier and rougher than the movie. The writing was excellent, but I'm pretty chicken so some parts were a bit too much for me. ( )
  ToniFGMAMTC | Jan 19, 2017 |
I just finished, and I don't know if I will be able to sleep tonight. This was much scarier and rougher than the movie. The writing was excellent, but I'm pretty chicken so some parts were a bit too much for me. ( )
  ToniFGMAMTC | Jan 19, 2017 |
Some parts were hard to get through and I wanted to set it down. That being said, I enjoyed the book.

Here is a review by Srividya: http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1551558882

this review sums up my thoughts ( )
  Kimberly_Mejia | Nov 3, 2016 |
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Epigraph
When you look into the abyss, the abyss also looks into you.

-- Friedrich Nietzsche
Writing does not cause misery, it is born of misery.

-- Montaigne
It's no good. I've been trying to sleep for the last half-hour, and I can't. Writing here is a sort of drug. It's the only thing I look forward to. This afternoon I read what I wrote. . . . And it seemed vivid. I know it seems vivid because my imagination fills in all the bits another person wouldn't understand. I mean, it's vanity. But it seems a sort of magic. . . . And I just can't live in this resent. I would go mad if I did.

-- John Fowles

The Collector
"You will be visited by a tall, dark stranger," the gipsy woman told Misery, and Misery, startled, realized two things at once: this was no gipsy, and the two of them were no longer alone in the tent. She could smell Gwendolyn Chastain's perfume in the moment before the madwoman's hands closed around her throat.

"In fact," the gipsy who was not a gipsy observed, "I think she is here now."

Misery tried to scream, but she could no longer even breathe.


-- Misery's Child
"It always look data way, Boss Ian," Hezekia said, "No matter how you look at her, she seem like she be lookin' at you. I doan know if it be true, but the Bourkas, dey say even when you get behin' her, the godess, she seem to be lookin' at you."

"But she is, after all, only a piece of stone, Ian remonstrated.

"Yes, Boss Ian," Hezekia agreed. "Dat what give her powah.

-- Misery's Return
Dedication
This is for Stephanie and Jim Leonard, who know why. Boy, do they.
First words
umber whunn

yerrnnn umber whunnnn

fayunnn

These sounds: even in the haze.
Quotations
"I'm your number-one fan!"
Then he would look at the blank screen of his word processor for awhile. What fun. Paul Sheldon's fifteen-thousand-dollar paperweight.
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Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.

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Book description
Paul Sheldon. He's a bestselling novelist who has finally met his biggest fan. Her name is Annie Wilkes and she is more than a rabid reader - she is Paul's nurse, tending his shattered body after an automobile accident. But she is also his captor, keeping him prisoner in her isolated house. Now Annie wants Paul to write his greatest work-just for her. She has a lot of ways to spur him on. One is a needle. Another is an ax. And if they don't work, she can get really nasty... (0-451-15355-3)
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0451169522, Mass Market Paperback)

In Misery (1987), as in The Shining (1977), a writer is trapped in an evil house during a Colorado winter. Each novel bristles with claustrophobia, stinging insects, and the threat of a lethal explosion. Each is about a writer faced with the dominating monster of his unpredictable muse.

Paul Sheldon, the hero of Misery, sees himself as a caged parrot who must return to Africa in order to be free. Thus, in the novel within a novel, the romance novel that his mad captor-nurse, Annie Wilkes, forces him to write, he goes to Africa--a mysterious continent that evokes for him the frightening, implacable solidity of a woman's (Annie's) body. The manuscript fragments he produces tell of a great Bee Goddess, an African queen reminiscent of H. Rider Haggard's She.

He hates her, he fears her, he wants to kill her; but all the same he needs her power. Annie Wilkes literally breathes life into him.

Misery touches on several large themes: the state of possession by an evil being, the idea that art is an act in which the artist willingly becomes captive, the tortured condition of being a writer, and the fears attendant to becoming a "brand-name" bestselling author with legions of zealous fans. And yet it's a tight, highly resonant echo chamber of a book--one of King's shortest, and best novels ever. --Fiona Webster

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:27 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

After a car crash, writer Paul Sheldon is saved by his number one fan. She brought him home, splinted his mangled legs, and all he had to do in return was write a very special book, one all about her favourite character. Because if he didn't, if he was bad, she would be cross - very cross.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 8 descriptions

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Audible.com

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HighBridge

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