The Bazaar of Bad Dreams

  • by Stephen King
  • Narrated by Stephen King, Dylan Baker, Brooke Bloom, Hope Davis, Kathleen Chalfant, Santino Fontana, Peter Friedman
  • 20 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Other narrators include: Cotter Smith, Will Patton, Edward Herrmann, Holter Graham, Frederick Weller, Mare Winningham, Craig Wasson, Thomas Sadoski, and Tim Sample.
A master storyteller at his best - the O. Henry Prize winner Stephen King delivers a generous collection of stories, several of them brand new, featuring revelatory autobiographical comments on when, why, and how he came to write (or rewrite) each story.
Since his first collection, Nightshift, published 35 years ago, Stephen King has dazzled listeners with his genius as a writer of short fiction. In this new collection he assembles, for the first time, recent stories that have never been published in a book. He introduces each with a passage about its origins or his motivations for writing it.
There are thrilling connections between stories, including themes of morality, the afterlife, guilt, and what we would do differently if we could see into the future or correct the mistakes of the past. "Afterlife" is about a man who died of colon cancer and keeps reliving the same life, repeating his mistakes over and over again. Several stories feature characters at the end of life, revisiting their crimes and misdemeanors. Other stories address what happens when someone discovers he has supernatural powers: the columnist who kills people by writing their obituaries in "Obits"; the old judge in "The Dune", who, as a boy, canoed to a deserted island and saw written in the sand the names of people who then died in freak accidents. In "Morality", King looks at how a marriage and two lives fall apart after the wife and husband enter into what seems, at first, a devil's pact they can win.
Magnificent, eerie, utterly compelling, these stories comprise one of King's finest gifts to his constant fan. "I made them especially for you," says King. "Feel free to examine them, but please be careful. The best of them have teeth."

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What the Critics Say

"Each narrator is a perfect fit for the stories he or she reads - it's rare to find such a collection with no misses, but it's not unusual for King. Narrating the stories' introductions himself, King makes the listener feel like his confidant every time. Cotter Smith steals the show, masterfully performing several pieces, including the poem 'The Bone Church,' the best performance of the collection." (AudioFile)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A Little Supernatural, Horror, and Insight

Stephen King likens himself to a midnight street vendor peddling his tales, and if nightmares are what you seek than his short story collection “Bazaar of Bad Dreams,” delivers. This is an eclectic collection of some old favorites and new consisting of some real-life horrors, amazing supernatural fantasy, and even poetry Stephen King style. What makes these stories even more interesting, especially the Audio version, is each story is preceded by a few words of insight and inspiration from the author himself.
The ensemble cast of narrators does a great job bringing each story to life; which may or may not be a good thing since they are from Stephen King..
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- D "I read, I write; I listen"

Doesn't Belong in the Horror Genre

This is a really nice collection, but it doesn't belong in the Horror Genre. I realize that it is almost automatic to assume that "because it was written by THE ONE AND ONLY Stephen King", that it must be horror. Well I disagree. I've read quite a bit of King's work over the last 30 years, and what I've noticed is that the older he gets, the more his stories revolve around the issue of mortality. These stories range from "it was okay" to "wow, that was amazing". but the one thing that I believe holds true, is that these are not the type of stories the man used to write. While listening to this book, I found myself hoping that the next one would send chills down my spine. Well I'm almost through the book and "no such luck". I don't want to take anything away from this collection, as the stories are truly heart-warming. I also know that horror is somewhat relative to the perceptions of the reader. So I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions. But to me, this is not Horror. Thanks for reading my review.
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- Thomas

Book Details

  • Release Date: 11-03-2015
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio