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11/22/63

by Stephen King

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
11,371698473 (4.2)1 / 682
On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? The author's new novel is about a man who travels back in time to prevent the JFK assassination. In this novel that is a tribute to a simpler era, he sweeps readers back in time to another moment, a real life moment, when everything went wrong: the JFK assassination. And he introduces readers to a character who has the power to change the course of history. Jake Epping is a thirty-five-year-old high school English teacher in Lisbon Falls, Maine, who makes extra money teaching adults in the GED program. He receives an essay from one of the students, a gruesome, harrowing first person story about the night fifty years ago when Harry Dunning's father came home and killed his mother, his sister, and his brother with a hammer. Harry escaped with a smashed leg, as evidenced by his crooked walk. Not much later, Jake's friend Al, who runs the local diner, divulges a secret: his storeroom is a portal to 1958. He enlists Jake on an insane, and insanely possible, mission to try to prevent the Kennedy assassination. So begins Jake's new life as George Amberson and his new world of Elvis and JFK, of big American cars and sock hops, of a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and a beautiful high school librarian named Sadie Dunhill, who becomes the love of Jake's life, a life that transgresses all the normal rules of time.… (more)
  1. 171
    It by Stephen King (watertiger, sturlington)
    watertiger: The characters from IT are referenced in 11/22/63
    sturlington: A section of 11/22/63 is set in Derry and features characters from It.
  2. 90
    Time and Again by Jack Finney (zwelbast, bookworm12)
  3. 80
    The Dead Zone by Stephen King (StarryNightElf)
  4. 80
    Replay by Ken Grimwood (SJaneDoe, dltj, HoudeRat)
    dltj: Shares a similar plot line that covers part of the same time period, and "Replay" even includes a story fragment about November 22, 1963.
  5. 30
    Blackout by Connie Willis (Navarone)
    Navarone: Both books are about time travel and how the future is affected due to the actions you make.
  6. 30
    All Clear by Connie Willis (Navarone)
  7. 41
    American Tabloid by James Ellroy (glwebb)
    glwebb: If you liked 11/22/63 then American Tabloid should be right up your street. A very snappy, complicated, twisted look at the Kennedy Presidency and assassination. Ellroy dishes up a counterfactual history that seems almost too real to be anything other than the secret truth.… (more)
  8. 20
    Bid Time Return by Richard Matheson (stevetempo)
    stevetempo: No change in history here...but a cross time romance is featured...if you saw and enjoyed the movie...read the book.
  9. 10
    When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead (Othemts)
  10. 10
    Time and Time Again by Ben Elton (aliklein)
  11. 00
    Doomsday Book by Connie Willis (Othemts)
  12. 00
    The Iowa Baseball Confederacy by W. P. Kinsella (Othemts)
  13. 33
    American Gods: Author's Preferred Text by Neil Gaiman (krazy4katz)
    krazy4katz: Both novels are epic. They both have elements of time travel and a sense that minor actions can lead to major unintended consequences.
  14. 23
    Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (mene)
    mene: Both books are about time travel through a kind of portal. In both books, the time traveller finds love on the other side, but the effects of the time travel and the way it works are different. In King's book, the time traveller also actively tries to change history, while in Gabaldon's book, the time traveller uses her knowledge of future events a lot less actively.… (more)
1960s (74)
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Showing 1-5 of 668 (next | show all)
Maldita sea, Stephen King, me has vuelto a pisar la idea para una historia; en realidad la culpa es mía por no haberme puesto a escribir antes que tú pero, si dices que empezaste este libro en el '72, no me hubiera quedado más remedio que viajar en el tiempo, escribirla antes, matarte y que luego se liara parda: ya tú sabes de lo que hablo.

Acabo de leer muchas otras críticas sobre este libro y estoy de acuerdo con varias (sorprendentemente) en que tiene una parte central de unas 15 decenas de páginas que es lenta y soporífera hasta el punto de la desesperación: tardé bastante más en superar ese bache que en leer el resto de la novela. Aún así, si te ves con fuerzas como para derribar el muro de la desidia (y me consta que algunos no lo han logrado), el resto de la historia está muy bien llevada y, fíjate tú qué cosas, incluso podrías aprender datos sobre personas y momentos históricos reales por los que no te habrías interesado de otra manera. Eso no pasa todos los días ni, por desgracia, con todo el mundo.

Por lo demás, se aprecia la abundancia de la documentación sobre la época, se huele la tijera del editor recortando detalles superfluos del manuscrito original para que no entorpezcan la narración (sin conseguirlo del todo alguna vez), y se obtiene un resultado final que, aunque es satisfactorio, peca de una cierta simpleza a ratos. Por ejemplo, uno ya sabe (o supone) que la situación racial en Texas en la época en la que está ambientada la mayor parte de la novela dista mucho de ser idílica, pero de ahí a forzar el protagonismo rayano en la comedia paródica de varios personajes negros hay un paso. Y sí, quizá las novelas de Stephen nunca hayan destacado por su complejidad, y entiendo que esto es un bicho enorme que le ha llevado 2 años de escritura y casi 40 de maduración, y que no todo el mundo tiene mis elevadas exigencias, pero maldita sea, crece, Steve.

Por descontado, siendo yo quien soy, mi parte preferida del libro ha sido la de las últimas 100 páginas, en las que se trata la trama desde un punto de vista más cercano a la ciencia-ficción, siempre vía del deus ex machina sin el que Stephen King jamás habría podido terminar un libro. No me parece mal, ya de por sí es más didáctico que la mayor parte de su obra, pero creo que cualquiera que haya leído gran parte de esta podría esquematizar sin problemas el esqueleto en el que basa todo lo que escribe; al menos no es tan evidente y repetitivo como Dean Koontz, pero una cosa no quita la otra.

Lo que sí quiero destacar es que la novela per se no toca ninguna fibra emocional hasta que llega el desenlace final, con el que no he podido evitar echar una lagrimilla a pesar de lo barata que podía resultar la situación descrita; y esto lo aprecio favorablemente porque no es algo que muchos otros libros hayan conseguido a lo largo de mi vida: quizá "De ratones y hombres" (guiño, guiño), algunos de los momentos más empáticos de "El Guardián entre el Centeno", y un libro que leí de César Vidal, aunque creo que ahí lloré por otra cosa diferente. ( )
  tecniferio | May 12, 2022 |
Just read it people. Probably the masterpiece of the King, master of horror that absolutely killed it with the romance.
Each character palpable throughout the pages, King allowed us to breathe in the history through the eyes of a time traveller. But it wasn't just the part that got into the history books made this book a solid 5 star. It was the everyday characters, the good folk of the Jodie. Deke, Mimi, Mike, Eddie and Sadie, oh sweet Sadie.
( )
  isadil | May 6, 2022 |
Wow, what a book. I had delayed reading due to its size and my life being complicated but am so glad I finally took the time to read this. I didn't want to put this book down. The premise is going back in time to stop the Kennedy assassination. The butterfly effect is HUGE in this book. Great for so many types of readers. No King monsters but definitely his awesome imagination. So worth the read. ( )
  KyleneJones | Apr 25, 2022 |
This was one of Stephen King's better books in a long time and it even had a really good ending. Some people might complain that it is too long and about halfway, I was worried that things were going to get bogged down in too much detail about Oswald and the events leading up to the assassination. I was pleasantly surprised that King kept things moving.

One of my favorite aspects of this book, other than the fascinating ideas around time travel that he has written, is the main character Jake Epping and his connections with the other characters. When Jake goes to the 1950s Lisbon Falls or even into Texas, I loved the characters. I have always thought this is one of King's greatest strengths--writing good characters.

It is a long book but I thought it kept moving and--I repeat--it has a really good ending. I also really liked Under the Dome but that had one of the worst endings ever. This book makes up for it. ( )
  walterqchocobo | Apr 15, 2022 |
A really great example of the popular novel, which mixes a solid thriller with romance and a lovely depiction of small town America. There's some humour, decent sci fi and unsettling horror as well. ( )
  whatmeworry | Apr 9, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 668 (next | show all)
It all adds up to one of the best time-travel stories since H. G. Wells. King has captured something wonderful. Could it be the bottomlessness of reality? The closer you get to history, the more mysterious it becomes. He has written a deeply romantic and pessimistic book. It’s romantic about the real possibility of love, and pessimistic about everything else.
 

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
King, Stephenprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bonomelli, RexCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cassel, BooTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gassie, NadineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hobbing, ErichDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kuipers, HugoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rekiaro, IlkkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wasson, CraigReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
It is virtually not assimilable to our reason that a small lonely man felled a giant in the midst of his limousines, his legions, his throng, and his security. If such a nonentity destroyed the leader of the most powerful nation on earth, then a world of disproportion engulfs us, and we live in a universe that is absurd.

- Norman Mailer
If there is love, smallpox scars are as pretty as dimples.

- Japanese proverb
Dancing is life.
Dedication
For Zelda
Hey, honey, welcome to the party
First words
I have never been what you call a crying man.
Quotations
But stupidity is one of two things we see most clearly in retrospect.  The other is missed chances.
Although emotionally delicate and eminently bruisable, teenagers are short on empathy.  That comes later in life, if at all.
Life turns on a dime.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
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Wikipedia in English (3)

On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? The author's new novel is about a man who travels back in time to prevent the JFK assassination. In this novel that is a tribute to a simpler era, he sweeps readers back in time to another moment, a real life moment, when everything went wrong: the JFK assassination. And he introduces readers to a character who has the power to change the course of history. Jake Epping is a thirty-five-year-old high school English teacher in Lisbon Falls, Maine, who makes extra money teaching adults in the GED program. He receives an essay from one of the students, a gruesome, harrowing first person story about the night fifty years ago when Harry Dunning's father came home and killed his mother, his sister, and his brother with a hammer. Harry escaped with a smashed leg, as evidenced by his crooked walk. Not much later, Jake's friend Al, who runs the local diner, divulges a secret: his storeroom is a portal to 1958. He enlists Jake on an insane, and insanely possible, mission to try to prevent the Kennedy assassination. So begins Jake's new life as George Amberson and his new world of Elvis and JFK, of big American cars and sock hops, of a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and a beautiful high school librarian named Sadie Dunhill, who becomes the love of Jake's life, a life that transgresses all the normal rules of time.

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Book description
Haiku summary
Can we change the past?
Not if it erases life.
Better just to dance. (enemyanniemae)

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