Written By: Stephen King, Peter Straub

Narrated By: Frank Muller

Date: November 2012

Duration: 28 hours 0 minutes

Summary:

Soon to be a Netflix series!

The iconic, “extraordinary” (The Washington Post) collaboration between bestselling authors Stephen King and Peter Straub—an epic thriller about a young boy’s quest to save his mother’s life.

Jack Sawyer, twelve years old, is about to begin a most fantastic journey, an exalting, terrifying quest for the mystical Talisman—the only thing that can save Jack’s dying mother. But to reach his goal, Jack must make his way not only across the breadth of the United States but also through the wondrous and menacing parallel world of the Territories.

In the Territories, Jack finds another realm, where the air is so sweet and clear a man can smell a radish being pulled from the ground a mile away—and a life can be snuffed out instantly in the continuing struggle between good and evil. Here Jack discovers “Twinners,” reflections of the people he knows on earth—most notably Queen Laura, the Twinner of Jack’s own imperiled mother. As Jack “flips” between worlds, making his way westward toward the redemptive Talisman, a sequence of heart-stopping encounters challenges him at every step.

An unforgettable epic of adventure and resounding triumph, The Talisman is one of the most influential and highly praised works of fantasy ever written.

Genres:

  • Anonymous

    It was really BORING....it just did not work for me. I like stephen king, so maybe its just not for me, but it was long, boring and way too desrciptive when it did not need to be. sorry Uncle Steve

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

  • Monica I.

    I loved The Talisman - the narrator was wonderful - he has done a lot of Stephen King books for audio.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • JRileyL82

    I love this book. Carries many of the traditions in King's Dark Tower novels.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Donna Burns

    I love this book. I read it when I was younger and had to listen to it. The story teller did a wonderful job. The book is still as good as it was when I first read it. I will be listening to it again!!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Jennifer Burmistrzak

    This is not the Stephen King book I'm used to listening to... The story is good, but not as good as I'm used to them being. This is the first time I purchased an audiobook where Stephen King partnered with Peter Straub. The narration by Frank Muller is his usual perfection. RIP Frank.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    couldn't get past the first 10 min, the reader was so awful, dont they interview these guys before they let them read their books! he sounds asthmatic, drawing out, and whispering the last word in each sentence, and in other places he would race through a couple of sentences, not even pausing for a comma or a period. I tried to get past his awful reading style, if thats what you want to call it. Couldn't do it, i found myself trying to imitate his voice just to try to make sense of why he was talking that way-- very annoying.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Bianca C

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it's one of the few Stephen King books that I hadn't read yet and it was excellent. The narrator Frank Muller was really fantastic, he was a Shakespearean theater actor before his untimely death and he truly brought the characters alive. I will certainly look for more books that he narrated.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • larry

    Worth the read/listen if you are a true King fan. The worlds crossover once again and the parallels to the Dark Tower series scream out at you. Can't wait until Black House makes it onto CD so I can finish it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    I love Stephen King's books. After hearing only the first CD I know I would've loved this one. But the narrator just killed it for me. I kept trying to put his voice out of my head and listen only to the plot. But it was no use. Every sentence had the same pattern--the same annoying pattern. I just had to give up. This wasn't one I could listen to. I look forward to reading it though.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Ben M.

    Epic tale, read by one of the best!

  • Brad M.

    Giving the book a 4 star only because I thought is started off slow and was a little hard to get into. However, overall I love the King / Straub collaboration and the narrating was on point. Great book.

  • craig specht

    This was a good book. I have this on cassette and have listened to this before many years ago. A lot I had forgotten. The narrator did a good job. A challenging adventure. Very imaginative. Fantasy and horror.

  • Jennifer L.

    I love Stephen King. He's an amazing author. However, I couldn't quite get into the rhythm of this book. Normally I get enraptured with his stories. Unfortunately, I found it sorta boring. The narrator also contributed to my low score. His voice was pretty annoying. There were some intense scenes, but not enough to keep me wanting to turn the page.

  • Wreatha A.

    Absolutely loved this story and the narrator made it even better, if that's possible! Truly imagine wolf sounding just like that...awesome job Frank mullen, and I hated to hear the ending....did not want it to end!

  • Wendy B.

    This is my favorite Stephen King novel. He always manages to capture the thoughts and feelings of children in a believable manner and give them far more presence of mind than adults think they have. Not obly do we have a coming of age heroic quest, we have unforgettable characters, from Jack to Lily to Sloat and, above all, Wolf, perhaps the most heroic of them all. Read by Frank Muller, who read many of King's books, the story comes to life. Muller had a gift for voice acting that is rarely found today, and his death leftca big hole in the audiobook acting world. This is one of his best. (For another example of Frank's work, check out The Body, also by King.)

  • Doreen B

    This is my absolute favorite book. Have read and reread it many times. I was thrilled to give it a listen. I think I just enjoy the idea of two worlds coexisting and having a “twiner”. And I love poor Wolf, he stole my heart. That being said, the narrator killed it for me. The way he continuously dropped the last word in every sentence was so distracting, I just couldn’t get lost in that the story the way I wanted.

  • Anita M

    This an amazing story, unfortunately the narrator was not one I enjoyed at all. The breath he has to blow out after every sentence is very annoying and distracting. I did not enjoy listening to one of my favorite stories with this narrator reading it, I do not recommend this story being read by this narrator:(

  • Brenda Bowman

    I had read this book years ago and enjoyed it again. I was amazed at how much I had forgotten. Steven King still remains my favorite author. However Frank Muller was not very good. He reminded me of an old news comentator. Ending almost every sentence as a line he is reading from a news report.

  • Lori Rich

    Read the book ages ago, was happy to hear it read to me. A true coming of age book, descriptive and dramatic. Many parts are reminiscent of The Dark Tower however, which in truth dragged my mind from concentration on this story to Jake and that other world. Still, a fantastically woven tale by both authors.

  • Latasha Strozier

    With the exception of a few slow moments and over description, the story was good. My one issue (which I've noticed in every Stephen King book I've read) is his love of using the word "nigger." Pretty sure it's not necessary in EVERY SINGL BOOK.

  • Robin

    When this book first came out, I bought it in hardback, read it and loved it. Over the years, I returned to it again and again. Now I'm happy to have the chance to hear it read to me. The book has lost none of its charm over the years. It's pretty much the best coming of age, adventure-quest book I've ever read. The writing team of Straub and King is wonderful, and there is a good-heartedness to the book that makes it an enduring classic. The narrator was a great complement to the book, a really brilliant reader whose ability to become the characters added immensely to my pleasure in hearing the book read.

  • Anonymous

    King has always been one of my faves and Peter Straub is equally talented in many ways. The story was good on it's own, but envelopes the sense of the Gunslinger series in many aspects. I enjoyed the way the main character grew throughout the story and how the story took you on many 'ups and downs' with the different situations the characters were placed into. It kept you interested and wanting more.

  • Kate Hartley

    Love the story and narration but navigating to hold and play is torture!

  • Kirk Dunneman

    This is King at his best ! An epic, grand adventure.

  • Jamie Lynch

    The book was great. There were some bits that seemed sort of useless and too long, but after you get through those the story is interesting. The narrator is hard to get used to, but he grew on me.

  • avid reader

    This is a book that I have read 3 times over the years, and it just gets better and better with each reading!!

  • Anonymous

    This book is very long but absolutely absorbing. I loved it! Absolutely awesome. Get it!

  • TOXIC

    KEN nailed it...The late and great Frank Muller is no longer here to record...search for him to find the master of the craft of narration !! The book is a good-but not-great coming of age/adventure/quest.

  • Anonymous

    This book felt as long as its 25 or so disks. I was engaged in the story from time to time, but it always felt like the wheels were spinning without ever getting anywhere. It took a long time to get the story started as well. I found the Dark Tower tie ins interesting, but aside from that, I would have rather spent my ungodly commute listening to a more entertaining book. At least the reader was good.

  • Mickey Way

    A great adventure story all the way! This one is a MUST if you like a mix of reality, fantasy, and sci-fi. 'Nuff Sed!

  • Anonymous

    AS A LONG TIME FAN OF STEPHEN KING I UNDERSTAND THAT SOMETIMES YOU HAVE TO BE PATIENT. IN THIS CASE IS WAS WORTH IT. THE BEGINNING IS A LITTLE SLOW BUT IN THE END IT IS ALL WORTH IT. THIS IS AN INTRIGUING STORY IF YOU CAN GET PAST THE SLOW PART.

  • Anonymous

    This book was a slow starter and there was WAY more description than I wanted throughout the whole book. It seemed to kinda drag. I would have liked to listen to an abridged version - maybe it wouldn't have taken so long. It was a little gory too.

  • Stan Fissel

    I could only make it through 8 chapters of this book. I am not sure if was the asthmatic narrator or the excessive oddness of the characters. I may not have given this book enough of a chance but, BLAH!

  • Jill Ludlow

    If I hadn't read a review suggesting to keep listening I would have sent it back. The person reading the book was awful. As far as speaking the characters in the book he was great but the story telling in between dialogs was very hard to listen to. I did continue to listen though and finally was able to tune out the annoying aspect of his storytelling and hear the story which I really enjoyed. Overall I am glad I stuck it out but not the most easy to do.

  • Deb D

    I read this when it first came out (1984) and recall really enjoying it. 20+ years later, I find the beginning is not as enthralling as I remember. However, as you get invested in the story and the characters, you get drawn in and start to care. One thing I've always admired about King is his ability to make me feel that I know, or have known, the characters. (I'm not familiar with Straub's other work.) You love the good guys, despite any shortcomings, and you loathe the bad guys. He's got a real talent for making one think "Eeeyew." The "buddy" character in the story is a bit lame, but if you like fantasy that's a bit on the scary side, this is a good one.

  • Ken

    The first half of this book is just OK to me. Actually it takes awhile for it to get going. Once it does, its a facinating world we are thrust in to. The sidekick in the story seems a little hokey, but he doesn't stick around too long thankfully. Frank Mueller, the narrorator, is the best in the biz - I mean it. Get this book if for no other reason. If you liked the S.K. Dark Tower series, you will like this book. It has the same pace.

  • Anonymous

    I love Straub ans King colaborations they are the masters of the horror. I would like to see more from the two of them together.

  • Bryan Ross

    I once read that Stephen King had done some stories by mapping them out ahead of time and some by simply writing until the story took him somewhere. I would guess that this collaborative work was mapped out beforehand. It's simple and predictable. Still, the journey was entertaining and original at times. There were some lovable characters and exciting moments among the drudgery.

  • Anonymous

    This story started out SO SLOW that I almost sent it back. But, suffering through, it did pick up, although it was very predictable in some areas. It wasn't a great book, but it did have some entertaining and engaging parts. It wouldn't be my first recommendation.

  • Talmadge V Vessels Jr

    Exactly what you expect from any King coauthored work: before the blood, gore and death descends there is a well developed, descriptive adventure that is spell binding, magnetized by offensive and unpleasant “real life”, humor and kindness. If you like his other works, the King web is well spun in this tale. Young adult fantasy author - T. V. Vessels, Jr.

  • Molly Rhea

    Although I don't usually enjoy science fiction, Stephen King drew me into the story and kept me listening raptly. One of those books of vivid images that can lodge in your mind to be brought out and occasionally re-examined.

  • Anonymous

    I kept waiting for it to get good and it never did. Long and predictable. Don't bother.

  • Ken Gemme

    11 cd's into this and I wonder if I should have even started this book. It is a bit slow but I'm praying that it winds up in typical King fashion. Make a commitment to this book or don't even start it...it can really drag in parts...but...the ending seems to be lining up to be great!

  • Koka Thomason

    The story itself is enjoyable, as long as the action keeps moving. However, the last 6 discs or so just seem to drag on. This book could have been a lot shorter, but it just drags out with these very long descriptions with little action. You might do better to read it than to listen to it, as you can skim past the slow parts.

  • Walter Mallon

    This book is classic Stephen King with Peter Straub thrown in. As usual, I found myself connecting with the characters and thoroughly enjoyed Mr. King's story telling ability.

  • Anonymous

    Hated this book! The reader was very slow and I thought the story dragged on. Half way through the book I was forcing myself to listen since I had already put so much time into it. It never got any better. Don't waste your time.

  • William Morgan

    Another wonderful tale by Stephen King. This one had me hooked early. Although quite long, the story never got boring. It has lot's of fantasy and "other world" type stuff, but is almost believable. Since when does anyone turn to Stephen King for reality anyway. The authors' brilliant character development was augmented beautifully by on of the best readers I've heard. Highly recommended!

  • Michael Lane

    It gets off to a very slow start and I almost gave up on it, but I'm glad I didn't. If you have read the Dark Tower series, the similarities are too numerous to mention. The Talisman is like a retelling of that entire epic in one novel. The characters are different, and it's obviously not the same story, but the feelings and themes are the same. I quite enjoyed listening to this book, and Frank Muller is among the best around. He especially brings "Wolf" to life in a way that is very touching.

  • John

    I thought this book started slow but once it got started was excellant!!

Talisman

by Stephen King, Peter Straub

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