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Publisher's Summary

For the first time in unabridged audio download comes the perennial classic from Stephen King - timeless and topical. 

The house looked right, felt right to Dr Louis Creed. Rambling, old, unsmart and comfortable. A place where the family could settle, the children grow and play and explore. The rolling hills and meadows of Maine seemed a world away from the fume-choked dangers of Chicago. 

Only the occasional big truck out on the two-lane highway, grinding up through the gears, hammering down the long gradients, growled out an intrusive threat. But behind the house and far away from the road: that was safe. Just a carefully cleared path up into the woods where generations of local children have processed with the solemn innocence of the young, taking with them their dear departed pets for burial. 

A sad place maybe, but safe. Surely a safe place. Not a place to seep into your dreams, to wake you, sweating with fear and foreboding. 

©1983 Stephen King (P)2018 Simon & Schuster Audio

What listeners say about Pet Sematary

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As a parent, a horrifying story

I read this book years ago when I was in school. But as a father to a 2-year-old boy now, I found it particularly terrifying this time around. King has an Author’s Note at the beginning. In it, he says that whenever someone asks him the scariest story he has written, he always responds with “Pet Sematary” without any hesitation. The reason isn’t a typical one, and I think you need to be a parent to fully grasp the horror of what happens in the book.

The story is solid, even though it drags a little in some spots. But it contains all the classic King elements of mystery and supernatural horror. And it’s the narration by TV’s Dexter, Michael C. Hall that makes this audiobook stand out. His steady voice oozes character, especially with the character of Jud Crandall. He does a great job of nailing the old man’s Maine accent and makes it seem effortless.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Amy
  • 19-05-2018

Loved it

Firstly, Michael C. Hall is now my favorite audible narrator, absolutely brilliant and perfect for the book. I loved the story as well, classic Stephen King.

2 people found this helpful

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A Deeply Upsetting Book

I've listened, and read, to many of King's books. Most often, I read his books as a form of sublime escapism. I couldn't stop shivering during parts of Under The Dome, and It - Pennywise - that damned thing beyond existence that fed on Derry since before Derry existed - still haunts the dark doorway of my hallway on nights I feel particularly sensitive. While often unsettling, I embrace these feelings and memories with a sort of sensual pleasure. King wanted me to feel that way, wanted me to fear that way, wanted me to escape that way, and I let him make me. I enjoy his reading for that quality. I can read, or listen, and the story unfolds before me - feelings and all.
While similar in the sense that King applies familiar structural, thematic, setting, and character elements from his repertoire within Pet Sematary, the story overall has a tone dissimilar to any of his works I've consumed so far. I don't want to spoil the story too much, so I'll try my best not to, but King's focus on the intimate, domestic feelings and experiences surrounding death and grief have an altogether different feeling to those of the rest of the story. While taken as a whole, it most certainly is a horror novel, but the personal reflections of King's own experiences within, and the emotional depths into which he plunges himself, his reader, and, of course, Lewis, Rachel, Gage, 'Church, Judd, and Ellie, especially during the evermore heart-wrenching than gut-wrenching night after the funeral, make Pet Sematary feel like it's desecrating something deeply spiritual and intimate. That's not to say it's a bad book - I'd argue it's been my favourite of King's so far! - but I am saying you should treat this book with respect. It's deeply upsetting; it falls into emotional wells deeper than King normally bores; and while the book itself has a prominent supernatural vein running throughout it (again, a favourite of mine by him so far), and the main messages of the book may be the competing and often contradictory 'Sometimes Dead Is Better', and 'Death Isn't Always Natural', the book leaves lasting impressions where you may not expect. I found myself pausing the audiobook earlier today, as I found myself emotionally overwhelmed by some of its descriptions. I do not pause King books out of habit, as I find they unsettle me but do not upset me. I paused this one, as it did both.

1 person found this helpful

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Brilliant and haunting. Narration also top class.

This book took me a while as I found myself emotionally preparing for what I knew was inevitable. Worth delving into and will leave you asking questions that can be answered by closer consideration of the narrative.

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Sometimes Read is Better...

A fun little Lovecraft inspired chiller which, according to the preface, the only story that scared Stephen King himself.
While there are times Michael C. Hall's performance of certain voices and sound effects was a tad cringe worthy it does justice to the 1989 movie adaptation... and subsequently makes you wonder if the makers of the 2019 movie adaptation had even read the source material?!

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Fantastic

loved it me and my partner painted our house to the story. Great narrator and an even better story.

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perfect

everything was excellent narrator was really good loved jud as a character would recommend

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100% recommend

Brilliant and thrilling story line. Narration was second to none. Would listen to any audio by Michael C. Hall following this

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Fantastic

wow that took me back that movie freaked me out as a kid !! All these later finally heard the A/book and yep that also freaked me out just a Fantastic story

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Very Slow! Hard to finish

It took a LONG time to get to the point. I know the general story (have seen the movies) but always wanted to read/listen to the book. It took about 12 hours to actually get interesting, the last 6 or so hours were much better. I do feel like it was left unfinished though (which I guess was for dramatic effect), quite annoying as that was when it got interesting!

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  • Brandie
  • 21-08-2020

was an amazing listen 😍 kept me very interested!!

I loved the juice details and the ending was spine chilling my favorite character was jud

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  • Jennifer
  • 08-06-2019

I haven't been this scared before.

Fantastic narrator. Fantastic characters. Fantastic story. And the king of horror, as always, never ceases to amaze my impressionable brain

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  • Kim
  • 29-04-2019

Was ok.

To be honest I am disappointed with the book.I thought, because has been made into a movie, it would be a great book.

Story was meandering and not very climactic. Rather labored.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 14-04-2019

Brilliant

As usual with Stephen King the book tickled that primal fear deep within us all. And Michael C Hall brilliantly performs to bring forth that fear. 10/10

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  • Jack C
  • 21-06-2018

brilliant writing, simple story but heartbreaking

Tough in parts, loved the description of normal life before the horror strikes. quite short for King and all the better for it.

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  • Noorhelda Hj Bahrom
  • 02-08-2018

Great narrator but the story is boring

I bought this audiobook because of the rave reviews. I wanted to like this book but halfway through the book, the story still didnt pick up and I decided to just return it. The narrator is great but the story was disappointing.

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  • Lesley Carpenter
  • 23-12-2018

A true masterpiece

Loved it. Best audio book on the market.
Really brought to life by Michael C Hall.

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  • Simon
  • 29-03-2018

The One Where King Crossed A Line

In the foreword to this book King describes it as the scariest book that he has written because he feels that the story crosses a definite line going places where few stories, particularly at the time dared to tread. So much so in fact that he debated for a long time whether to even publish it.

In truth, he has a point. After a lot of careful build up the final third or so of this book contains as nightmarish journey as King has sent any of his characters on. And two of those characters really stand out. Lewis Creed, a decent yet imperfect family man and his growing friendship with the older, almost father incarnate that is Jud Crandall will likely have you warming to the two men and their families.

All well and good but this is Stephen King and if he had any similar warm feelings for his characters it doesn't show. This is King at his most visceral, the dark nails of his writing scraping at sacred relationships such as those between children and their pets and parents and their young children. If you think you are sensitive to such things being subjected to the evils a master horror story teller can inflict upon them then you have been warned and just possibly a pause for thought might be in order before you decide to try this one.

But it is after all just a story and you can stop reading it anytime, it's not going to possess you or anything. I never stopped, I kept on reading right to the end, but only because I wanted to, I could have stopped any time I wanted . . .

53 people found this helpful

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  • JamieM
  • 30-03-2018

Utterly terrifying

One of the all time best horror stories ever written. Michael C Hall’s narration is excellent, especially his mastery of Judd’s Maine accent. 5 stars all round.

12 people found this helpful

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  • BennySaysRelax
  • 25-06-2018

Probably the Best King Book I Have Read

I have realised i am going through King's books one after the other. Pet Semetery is by fair away the best one yet. And there are some big contendors for the title. It is a text book example of King. It builds towards its conclusion, layer by layer throughout the book.
Don't read any in depth reviews. You run the risk of spoilers. Go into the book with little to no preconceptions. Enjoy.

Micheal C Hall is superb. It was an excellent choice to have him read this book. Spot on.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Tim
  • 06-05-2018

Probably the best horror book ever written

Over the last 25 years I have read a zillion horror books. Two zillion maybe. This was written in Stephen Kings golden age for horror, he's still good but his writing is broader now. Anyway, there is loads of awesome horror books but this is right there at the top of the heap.

It's so human and well observed, it's such a good concept and it's so well dealt with you can recognise a bit of yourself in Lou.

You know when you have a favourite band, and they start good, then peak for a couple of albums and then stay good but lose the genius? This is Stephen Kings couple of albums, this, Misery, shining, the stand etc.

Just get it and listen to the book where Mr King felt he had finally gone too far.

8 people found this helpful

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  • ChronicPain
  • 29-03-2018

One of my favourite Stephen King novels

I have wanted this book to come to Audible for a long time now.
Listened to it in two days & loved every minute of it, definitely worth the wait & Michael C. Hall's narration was superb. Highly recommended for any constant reader.

11 people found this helpful

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  • M. Welsh
  • 15-10-2020

best narration I've heard

Fantastic listen from start to finish. immediately gripping and the narrator absolutely nailed it, best reading I've heard and will certainly seek out more from him. highly recommended.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jennifer Jane
  • 28-11-2019

Disturbing but brilliant!

I don't even know where to start with the review for this. It's both terrifying and brilliant at the same time. I listened to this on audible and the narration was by Michael C Hall.... he is amazing. I cannot imagine a better narrator for this book.

So we follow the Creed family as they move to Ludlow... Dr Louis Creed, his wife Rachel and their two kids along with Winston Churchill the cat. They meet their elderly neighbours and seem pleased with their move. On Louis' first day as University doctor one of the students suffers the most horrific injuries and life for the Creed family begins to change.

This is a book about life, death and that place in between. There are ghosts, visions and dreams and poses the real dilemma - would you resurrect those you've loved and lost - even if they wouldn't be quite the way they were before?? At what cost is that opportunity and what will the consequences be??

Stephen King said himself he wasn't sure if this book was too much. There is pet death, there is child death. There is serious injury. It's disturbing.... and yet, there is something frighteningly compelling about it. It's a really scary story... the ideas are disturbing but, in Louis' place, it made me think what I would do.... would I make the same choices? The scariest thing of all is that most people probably would.... I can't think of any other book that's provoked this kind of response in me. For that reason, it gets 5 stars.... I'd definitely recommend the audible version. This is the best narration ever! Michael C Hall does such an amazing job and creates the atmosphere to truly appreciate the absolute horror of this story.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Laura Gould
  • 23-09-2019

Hey ho, let's go!

Absolutely fantastic. Michael C Hall is incredible, his voice lends itself fantastically to King's superb writing. Bone chillingly brilliant!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Ruqayya
  • 26-05-2020

Narration fantastic, story falls short

There is not denying the narration was absolutely superb. The story was slow at points and though it picked up in the last 1/3 of the book, I felt dissatisfied with the ending. Eerie at times, and great description, but disappointing and wanted more action.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kelley 👽
  • 22-03-2020

Michael C Hall makes this

I’m not the biggest fan of King’s work, from my experience. I absolutely adored Carrie, but that’s been about the only book that I’ve been able to get through other than this one and I’ve gotta say that’s largely due to the narration.

Michael C Hall reads this beautifully. His voice is like butter.

If you’re wanting to listen to an audiobook for the first time and are interested in King’s work then I would definitely recommend listening to Pet Semetary.

The story is decent and maybe I would have liked it more if I hadn’t have seen the terrible film adaptations. Who knows.

But I fully recommend listening to anything Michael C Hall does.

1 person found this helpful

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