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Everything’s Eventual : 14 Dark Tales Pocket Books Stephen King


31st May 2013 Literature & Fiction 52 Comments

International bestselling author Stephen King is in terrifying top form with his first collection of short stories in almost a decade. In this spine-chilling compilation, King takes readers down a road less traveled (for good reason) in the blockbuster e-Book “Riding the Bullet,” bad table service turns bloody when you stop in for “Lunch at the Gotham Caf,” and terror becomes djvu all over again when you get “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French” — along with eleven more stories that will keep you awake until daybreak. Enter a nightmarish mindscape of unrelenting horror and shocking revelations that could only come from the imagination of the greatest storyteller of our time.

In his introduction to Everything’s Eventual, horror author extraordinaire Stephen King describes how he used a deck of playing cards to select the order in which these 14 tales of the macabre would appear. Judging by the impact of these stories, from the first words of the darkly fascinating “Autopsy Room Four” to the haunting final pages of “Luckey Quarter,” one can almost believe King truly is guided by forces from beyond.

His first collection of short stories since the release of Nightmares & Dreamscapes in 1993, Everything’s Eventual represents King at his most undiluted. The short story format showcases King’s ability to spook readers using the most mundane settings (a yard sale) and comfortable memories (a boyhood fishing excursion). The dark tales collected here are some of King’s finest, including an O. Henry Prize winner and “Riding the Bullet,” published originally as an e-book and at one time expected by some to be the death knell of the physical publishing world. True to form, each of these stories draws the reader into King’s slightly off-center world from the first page, developing characters and atmosphere more fully in the span of 50 pages than many authors can in a full novel.

For most rabid King fans, chief among the tales in this volume will be “The Little Sisters of Eluria,” a novella that first appeared in the fantasy collection Legends, set in King’s ever-expanding Dark Tower universe. In this story, set prior to the first Dark Tower volume, the reader finds Gunslinger Roland of Gilead wounded and under the care of nurses with very dubious intentions. Also included in this collection are “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French,” the story of a woman’s personal hell; “1408,” in which a writer of haunted tour guides finally encounters the real thing; “Everything’s Eventual,” the title story, about a boy with a dream job that turns out to be more of a nightmare; and “L.T.’s Theory of Pets,” a story of divorce with a bloody surprise ending.

King also includes an introductory essay on the lost art of short fiction and brief explanatory notes that give the reader background on his intentions and inspirations for each story. As with any occasion when King directly addresses his dear Constant Readers, his tone is that of a camp counselor who’s almost apologetic for the scare his fireside tales are about to throw into his charges, yet unwilling to soften the blow. And any campers gathered around this author’s fire would be wise to heed his warnings, for when King goes bump in the night, it’s never just a branch on the window. –Benjamin Reese –This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Eyebrows arched in literary circles when, in 1995, the New Yorker published Stephen King’s “The Man in the Black Suit,” a scorchingly atmospheric tale of a boy’s encounter with the Devil in backwoods Maine. The story went on to win the 1996 O. Henry Award for Best Short Story, confirming what King fans have known for years that the author is not only immensely popular but immensely talented, a modern-day counterpart to Twain, Hawthorne, Dickens. “The Man in the Black Suit” appears in this hefty collection, King’s first since Nightmares and Dreamscapes (1993), along with three other extraordinary New Yorker tales: “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away,” an intensely moving story of a suicidal traveling salesman who collects graffiti; “The Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French,” about a woman caught in a fatal loop of deja vu; and “The Death of Jack Hamilton,” a gritty, witty tale of Dillinger’s gang on the lam. Together, they make up what King, in one of many author asides, calls his “literary stories,” which he contrasts to the “all-out screamers” though most of the stories here seem a mix of the two, with the distinction as real as a line on a map. “Autopsy Room Four,” a black-humor horror about a man who wakes up paralyzed in a morgue and about to be autopsied, displays a mastery of craft, and “1408,” a haunted hotel-room story that first surfaced on the audio book Blood and Smoke, engenders a sense of profound unease, of dread, as surely as do the elegant work of Blackwood or Machen or, if one prefers, Baudelaire or Sartre. King’s talent doesn’t always burn at peak, of course, and there are lesser tales here, too, but none that most writers wouldn’t be proud to claim, like the slight but affecting “Luckey,” about a poor cleaning woman given a “luckey” coin as a tip, or “L.T.’s Theory of Pets,” which King cites as his favorite of the collection, but whose shift from humor to horror comes off as arbitrary, at least on the page (the story first appeared in audiobook form).Then there’s “Riding the Bullet,” the novella that put King on the cover of Time and rattled the publishing community not for its content a suspenseful encounter with the dead but for its mode of delivery, as an e-book, and “The Little Sisters of Eleuria,” another resonant entry in King’s self-proclaimed “magnus opus” about Roland the Gunslinger (Roland will return, King lets on, in a now-finished 900-page Dark Tower novel, Wolves of the Calla). Fourteen stories, most of them gems, featuring an array of literary approaches, plus an opinionated intro from King about the “(Almost) Lost Art” of the short story: this will be the biggest selling story collection of the year, and why not? No one does it better.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. –This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

In his introduction to Everything’s Eventual, horror author extraordinaire Stephen King describes how he used a deck of playing cards to select the order in which these 14 tales of the macabre would appear. Judging by the impact of these stories, from the first words of the darkly fascinating “Autopsy Room Four” to the haunting final pages of “Luckey Quarter,” one can almost believe King truly is guided by forces from beyond.

His first collection of short stories since the release of Nightmares & Dreamscapes in 1993, Everything’s Eventual represents King at his most undiluted. The short story format showcases King’s ability to spook readers using the most mundane settings and comfortable memories . The dark tales collected here are some of King’s finest, including an O. Henry Prize winner and “Riding the Bullet,” published originally as an e-book and at one time expected by some to be the death knell of the physical publishing world. True to form, each of these stories draws the reader into King’s slightly off-center world from the first page, developing characters and atmosphere more fully in the span of 50 pages than many authors can in a full novel.

For most rabid King fans, chief among the tales in this volume will be “The Little Sisters of Eluria,” a novella that first appeared in the fantasy collection Legends, set in King’s ever-expanding Dark Tower universe. In this story, set prior to the first Dark Tower volume, the reader finds Gunslinger Roland of Gilead wounded and under the care of nurses with very dubious intentions. Also included in this collection are “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French,” the story of a woman’s personal hell; “1408,” in which a writer of haunted tour guides finally encounters the real thing; “Everything’s Eventual,” the title story, about a boy with a dream job that turns out to be more of a nightmare; and “L.T.’s Theory of Pets,” a story of divorce with a bloody surprise ending.

King also includes an introductory essay on the lost art of short fiction and brief explanatory notes that give the reader background on his intentions and inspirations for each story. As with any occasion when King directly addresses his dear Constant Readers, his tone is that of a camp counselor who’s almost apologetic for the scare his fireside tales are about to throw into his charges, yet unwilling to soften the blow. And any campers gathered around this author’s fire would be wise to heed his warnings, for when King goes bump in the night, it’s never just a branch on the window. –Benjamin Reese –This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Everything’s Eventual : 14 Dark Tales










  • 52 responses to "Everything’s Eventual : 14 Dark Tales Pocket Books Stephen King"

  • poopy diapers
    2:16 on May 31st, 2013
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    This book is great because the stories go right to the point and they are not as descriptive as in other King’s books. Each story has its own “flavor” and it manages to surprise the reader. Not all stories can be described as “spooky” some of them are meant just to leave you with an uneasy feeling. But all stories are entertaining and once you start reading one you will not be able to stop until the end.

  • Steven Francis
    3:38 on May 31st, 2013
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    An elementary school teacher leads her students down the hall and kills them, one by one. A tabloid photographer pursues a vampire with a private pilots license, finding a grisly horror in a small airport and meeting a modern Dracula. A single finger sticks out of a man’s bathroom drain while he is watching a quiz show, triggering a life-destroying madness. The dead come alive and walk the shores of Maine, succesfully ending the world and sending isolated islanders into hostile terror. A couple gets lost in a dark end of London and find some very Lovecraftian terror. In Stephen King’s Nightmares and Dreamscapes, it seems that reality and the macabre come together in what is almost a natural effect, blending horror, fantasy, and even non-fiction (in an essay about baseball called “Head Down”) to make what may just be the perfect page entertainment. While some people insist that short stories and novellas are not as enjoyable as full-length novels, I find myself begging to differ. With short stories, you can begin them and sometimes finish them in a few minutes to an hour, engrossing yourself in and enjoying an entire tale in a fraction of the time it takes you to read a novel. They are easy to enjoy without having to allow the time for the reading of an entire book. And, perhaps most importantly, you can be entertained on an equal level with the best novels.All these things only add to the power of King’s collection, his fifth after “Night Shift,” “Different Seasons,” “Skeleton Crew,” and “Four Past Midnight.” His imagination, as usual, astounds, and, in many of the stories, scares the reader silly. And, as usual, he somehow still retains some sense of literary quality in the muddled pits of darkness and terror (and, more notably, Things That Go Bump In The Night). There is always something more beyond the night terrors and evil demons and unexplainable phenomena; for example, in a story called “The Moving Finger,” King demonstrates his unique talent for showing a characters’ descent into madness, something he has also emlployed in “Carrie” and “The Shining.” In “The End of the Whole Mess,” we see the narrator’s thoughts as the world comes to an end and he is the brother of the man who caused it. In “Suffer the Little Children,” King skillfully recounts the actions of an elementary school teacher who has always been confined by a belief in tough rules and strict punishments as she comes face to face with the fact that her mind, always centered in hard reality, is coming apart with the realization that her students may be unearthly beings with an evil intent (we never find out if the children are really the beings she thought they were or just the products of her madness).All of this, and much more, shows us, in the end, that Stephen King is not confined by the constraints of his “brand name” (particularly, a horror novelist) and that he has, and will, write things that break through and go far beyond those constraints. For now, though, we can be content with these, and many more, stories, which are just as valid as any great American novel, and more enjoyable.

  • Summary
    4:35 on May 31st, 2013
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    King’s first collection of short stories since 1993 (“Nightmares and Dreamscapes”) shows the horror master still at the top of his game. There isn’t a dud in the bunch. King chose the order of the stories by shuffling all the spades in a deck of cards plus the joker; and the serendipitous result, he says, created a nice balance between “the literary stories and the all-out screamers.” But these stories are already a nice balance in themselves: eerie and spare, chilling and vivid, full of strong voices and real characters getting a jolt of terror out of an ordinary day.

    Like the horror writer in “The Road Virus Heads North,” who stops off at a yard sale on his way home. Or the divorcing couple who get the true measure of one another in a bloody encounter with a maitre d’ in “Lunch at the Gotham Café.” Or the woman in the acidulous marriage whose sense of déjà vu keeps getting sickeningly stronger on her second honeymoon in “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is In French.”

    An O.Henry prize winner (and one of King’s least favorite stories), first published in “The New Yorker,” reveals the roots of an old man’s fear in a boyhood encounter with the devil on an idyllic stretch of trout stream in rural Maine. Another “New Yorker” story, “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away,” is a poignant, haunting tale of a lonely traveling salesman whose graffiti collection engenders a life or death dilemma.

    The story King says is his favorite, because of its unexpected shift from humor to horror, “L.T.’s Theory of Pets,” turns on a gruesome twist at the end, which didn’t stick with me half so much as the chilling aftermath of a choice forced on a college kid during his hitchhiking encounter with Death in “Riding the Bullet,” first made famous as an e-book.

    In a Dark Tower story, “The Little Sisters of Eluria,” prequel to King’s seven-volume (book five, now completed, is 900 pages) “magnum opus,” Roland is attacked by green mutants and wakes in a gleaming hospital tent staffed by “nurses of death instead of life.” Teeming with romance, adventure, horror and heroics, this story has a literally creepy ending.

    The title story, “Everything’s Eventual” features a na?ve young high school drop-out with a certain talent but no clear ambition, who discovers his dream job is a nightmare. Though the stories are in a randomly chosen order, “Autopsy Room Four” is the ideal opener, a pitch-perfect blend of black humor and visceral horror told by a golfer who wakes up on an autopsy table. Inspired by a “Twilight Zone” episode, King gives it a thoroughly up-to-date twist. The poignantly low-key “Luckey,” about a motel chambermaid who receives a “luckey” quarter as a tip, is an appropriate closer too. Gritty, but plaintive too, the story holds a hopeful note.

    Most stories are told in the first person and King’s narrators – young, old or middle-aged – seem to speak right into your ear, so immediate and expressive are their voices. They are, mostly, ordinary people whose ordinary lives take a heart-stopping turn. There are also a couple of successful horror writers and a few motel rooms, including the haunted one, room “1408.”

    King accompanies each story with a short note about its inspiration and development, and sometimes a few words about how the writing went and what he thinks of the story now. An introduction laments the lack of outlets for the short story form and shares a few of his marketing ventures.

    Short stories, says King, do not come easy. His are pared down and cut close to plot, character and setting, with each of these elements honed and none of the manic digressions you sometimes find in his novels. A terrific collection, imagination harnessed.

  • Search Engine
    4:49 on May 31st, 2013
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    This short-story collection sat on my bookshelf for a long time. Collecting `book dust’ before I tempted to crack into it. Partly due to my then hectic college schedule and partly out of fear; fear that perhaps my favorite author had finally lost his `knack’. A fear I tend to gravitate towards with any new piece of work from any of the half-dozen or so favorite authors in my Constant Reader circle.

    It’s not entirely clear to me why I felt why I did, but I am happy to say that I am glad that I waited a few years to read it. Not because it is awful, but because I think I needed a few more years of living under the ol’ belt to truly appreciate the stories in this somewhat hodgepodge of a collection.

    Like many of you, I am a habitual digester of Stephen King. Also, I consider myself a fan as well– although just shy of the Annie Wilkes sort. However, these traits do little to affect my review writing, that I can promise you. In an ironic way, it actually helps me to remain honest; to keep me grounded, critical and appraising, all when they are deserved; and some would say even when not-so-deserved.

    My first attempt at beginning this book proved futile. So, I `shelved’ it and went onto something else. Just wasn’t the right time for it and for me to collide. So, about a month or so later, I decided to try again, this time with greater success.

    This collection is specifically interesting because it seems so random.
    Unlike many of King’s other short stories, where they often appear to be connected by some invisible umbilical chord or bound together by some ghastly theme, Everything’s Eventual is connected only in it’s randomness. Initially disjointed and uncomfortable to settle into, you will most likely find yourself going from zero to a hundred in the span of just a few stories; eventually finding it all but impossible to put down until you’ve finished the book in its entirety! For me, the “spiraling” began when I hit the marvelous tale (and my personal favorite of the whole lot) “The Little Sisters of Eleuria” which stars our favorite Dark Tower anti-hero Roland the Gunslinger. As a `newbie’ to the world of Roland and his quest for the Dark Tower (as of this writing, I have yet to complete my reading of the seven novel epic tale) I was eager to read this pre-Gunslinger tale. For those of you who are Dark Tower fans, this story is an absolute must read! You are sure to recognize a few yet-to-be introduced characters and it creates a feeling of longing and nostalgia.

    As many of you will come to know, there are stories here within that could easily slide into the long-ago defunct `Tales from the Darkside’ series or Showtime’s current successful series “Masters of Horror”. Such tales that would perfectly fit the bill are the terrifying “Autopsy Room Four” (dealing with premature burial), “1408″ (vaguely reminiscent of The Shining), “Lunch At the Gotham Café” (King’s most wicked tale in this collection and one that might have you thinking twice about that strange look the maitre d’ shoots towards you at your favorite restaurant), “The Death of Jack Hamilton” (an Al Capone-era tale that is more heart-touching than machine gun totting-although there are still plenty of bullets flying and dicing), “The Road Virus Heads North” (stalker via moving painting) and “In the Deathroom” (a story filled with a wit of tortures humor with a cool `smoking’ ending).

    Other tales that stand out like mountains from the rest of the valley of stories are the 1996 O’ Henry award winning “The Man in the Black Suit” (I recall my palms and heart racing throughout this nasty tale), “Riding the Bullet” (a sad tale told from the perspective of a regretful son about his dying mother and an unexpected ride from a dead man; also a story that has all ready been made into a movie), and “L.T.’s Theory of Pets”. This later tale (available as a stand alone audio book read by the author himself) is classic King. A local meat-packer comes home one evening to find that his wife of 3 years has left him. Even more shocking than her sudden dismissal from his life is when she turns up missing; a possible victim of the `Axe Man’. Pets is a roller-coaster ride filled with emotional ups-and-downs. Apart from this collection, I strongly encourage anyone who enjoys books-on-tape to be sure to purchase it.

    Most of the stories spun here are enjoyable and fulfilling. Some not fitting that bill quite as much would be “The Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French” (a confusing tale of déjà vu’), “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away” (a lonely traveling salesman contemplates suicide-not an awful story by any means, but it just never seems to land anywhere. Though, that could be fault of the reader (and probably is) rather than the fault of the writer).

    Book-ending our 14 tales of woe, is the unfortunate “Luckey Quarter.” I can’t say that we ended with a bang with this one. Perhaps the shortest of the bunch, Lucky starts out promising but quickly fizzles out. The ending rather anti-climatic and we are left wondering `what was the point?’

    My quarrels with some of the stories that are least appealing to me are minimal. Once again, regardless of the tale, King tells it stylishly and with maximum effort. Never is there a sense of his just going-through-the-motions; the author giving the reader the sign that this is his story and he’s sticking to it! Something of an admirable trait.

    Sometimes King seems more the King of Modern Fiction than others. And, for fans who have yet to purchase this fine collection, well, it’s probably just a matter of it being Eventual.

  • Why The Hate?
    6:11 on May 31st, 2013
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    The last couple of Stephen King collections, while still always superior to most of the junk out there, were still not the greatest. NIGHTMARES & DREAMSCAPES for example, had lots of little scraps and stuff that really felt like it had come out of a long-forgotten trunk. Kinda like a collection of B-sides.

    In EVERYTHING’S EVENTUAL, almost every story is terrific, and some are downright fantastic. The weakest of the lot is LT’S THEORY OF PETS (which you can get an audio CD of, with King reading in front of a live audience…it’s fun to hear). It’s a pretty funny story, and enjoyable for most of it, but the payoff is NON-EXISTENT. The ending is so [bad] I almost thought that either some pages had been left out, or King accidentally merged the ending from another story onto this one.

    Also, the title story is a little bit unsatisfying. The voice of the narrator, who we’re to believe is a teen-age loser, varies from nearly retarded to some flourishes of wonderful prose, and as it’s written in the first person, the inconsistency jarred me. Again, the ending is perhaps not terribly strong. It’s a nice idea for a story, but frankly felt a little lazy for King.

    For DARK TOWER fans, which I am one, big time, the novella of an early adventure of Roland’s, LITTLE SISTERS OF ELURIA, is very exciting. The story is well done, if a tiny bit long, and very nicely fills in some shades and gradations to Roland’s character. If you haven’t read the books, it isn’t critical to enjoying the story, but I think it would make the story seem just a little pointless. But if you are a fan, read the book for this alone!!

    I won’t run down every good story in the book, but there are two that honestly, genuinely give me the creeps reading them. One is ROOM 1408, a “haunted hotel room” story that is unlike any other. There’s a long setup, where we get the horrifying history of the room, and then, the instant our protagonist enters the room, all reality is skewed. King just absolutely plunges us into it…no gradual building up of suspense. It’s nice, creepy fun.

    THAT FEELING, YOU CAN ONLY SAY WHAT IT IS IN FRENCH is also creepy. Although I think everyone will have guessed the “surprise” ending before it’s dropped on you, it doesn’t lessen the enjoyment of this “trip to hell” for a couple having a few marital problems, and King very neatly takes the story’s staightforward narrative, and begins to skew it little by little.

    All the other stories are great fun, too, but I won’t get into them all. I think everyone will have their own favorites, of course, but the key is that I would say 85% of the book is sensational, and the other 15% only weak in comparison to the rest. GET THIS BOOK!

  • MrHistory
    7:01 on May 31st, 2013
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    I don’t really like short story collections so bear that in mind when considering my review. I LOVE Stephen King. He is one of the most wonderfull writers of horror, EVER! However, this book falls a little flat. I did like the one about Roland the the Sisters. It was way creepy. A couple of the other stories were pretty good but most of them just seemed to be ones that weren’t interesting enough to be a novel anyway so why bother with them. I know some people like short stories but I do not. I like to be drawn slowly into the characters day to day lives and to be able sympathize/emphathize with them. Mr. King is one of my favorite authors because he can take everyday things, like a closet of clothes and make them some of the scariest parts of the story. If you want a deep horror experience don’t by this book. Buy Dreamcatcher or even his Roland and the Dark Tower books. Heck even Insomnia beats this. Sorry, Mr. King, don’t send that evil clown to my house, please.

  • Adrian Scott
    7:56 on May 31st, 2013
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    This collection of stories is typical King–you may not like every single one, but you’re sure to find at least one that scares you and one that makes you laugh. My favorite was “Dolan’s Cadillac,” a chilling tale of painstakingly-plotted revenge. Also intriguing is “The 10 O’Clock People,” a must-read for every smoker who has cut back but who just can’t seem to quit completely. In “Sorry, Right Number,” King tries something new by writing the story in screenplay fashion; the gimmick doesn’t necessarily add anything, but the plot itself is engaging nonetheless. On the scary side, l found “Night Flier” to be extremely creepy–the final scene will definitely make you want to sleep with the lights on!–and for a more light-hearted offering, there’s “Clattery Teeth.” Each story here is likely to have its fans; you’ll have to read them all to find your own favorite.

  • Kat Lively
    9:12 on May 31st, 2013
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    Caught with a long layover and a longer trans-Atlantic flight, I picked up _Nightmares and Dreamscapes_ to kill the time. It has been over 15 years since I last read a book by Steven King (_Misery_, which I enjoyed), so I knew what I was in for, even if it had been awhile.

    _Nightmares_ is a collection of King’s short stories, some published in previous anthologies, some written under his pen name before he became famous. All of them are vintage “King” – the suspense, the way in which the tension is heightened, the graphic and unique details that keep one up at night. The stories, though were hit-and-miss.

    Some of the tales have been made into movies (I vaguely remember seeing Miguel Ferrer in “The Night Flier”), others were entirely new to me. With such a wide variety of stories (some give a “Kingsian” take on the mundane, as in “Chattery Teeth”, others are stock horror like “The 10 O’Clock People”) there is sure to be something for everyone here.

    Why the four stars then? For my taste, the truly frightening stories were outnumbered by the more mediocre. Nonetheless, it did make time pass quickly, and I don’t regret reading the collection, even if it is quite a bit astray from my typcial fare.

  • Ollas
    10:56 on May 31st, 2013
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    Though this collection may not be quite as consistent as “Night Shift” or “Skeleton Crew,” there are still plenty of chills to keep you up at night. Stories like “The Night Flier,” “Chattery Teeth,” “Dolan’s Cadilac,” “The Ten O’Clock People,” and “Rainy Season” are among the best and scariest that he’s written. King works best in the short story format that presents his inexhaustable supply of ideas at their sharpest and most visceral. This collection is no exception.

  • Henry Neal
    12:09 on May 31st, 2013
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    Stephen King is one of America’s great authors. The technical side of his writing is nearly perfect, and he can create heartbreaking nostalgia and startling realism with ease. All of King’s novels spring from unusually creative and original ideas, but unfortunately they tend to continue on auto pilot for hundreds of pages before finally petering out.

    “Everything’s Eventual” is a collection of 14 Stephen King short stories. In my opinion, the short story is the ideal medium for King’s fiction: it showcases his creative use of situation, voice, language, and description while freeing him from having to continue a story past its natural length.

    These 14 stories are all decent enough, some better than others. A few are derivative (“Autopsy Room Four”), a few are overly violent (“In the Deathroom”), a few are fluff (“Luckey Quarter”), and a few are chillingly wonderful (“The Road Virus Heads North,” “Riding the Bullet,” and the title story).

    A fascinating bonus is an introduction in which King discusses the lost art of the short story. He also provides interesting comments about each story.

  • theonlinekenyan
    13:13 on May 31st, 2013
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    As the prolific Mr. King mentions in his notes, he wishes to keep us uneasy and wary. He is a junkyard dog in that we should not fall into routine and expect the same horror story over and over.

    Pieces like “Umney’s Last Case” and “My Pretty Pony” seem more like exercises in different styles than the reader is used to. There is also the non-fiction piece “Head Down” which is about a Little League baseball championship from many years back.

    Don’t get me wrong, if you a fan of Stephen King’s writing (not just of horror), this is a good book. There are also notes in the back which explain where he go the idea for most of the stories. For aspiring writers, this is probably not a detailed as you’d like, but is good nonetheless.

    For diehard horror fans, there are a few stories that will chill you as only Stephen King can, but quite a bit of this book may feel unnecessary. I would recommend borrowing the book.

  • HTCWatchr
    14:00 on May 31st, 2013
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    NIGHTMARES & DREAMSCAPES is a collection of some odd, eclectic short fiction, showcasing Stephen King at his macabre best.

    In “Dolan’s Cadillac,” a man gets revenge for his murdered wife…through hard labor and ingenious thinking. “Suffer the Little Children” is a tale for every child who had an insufferable teacher, and wanted to do something about it.”The Night Flier” is a tale of obsession that leads to the ultimate horror. In “Popsy,” a young boy is kidnapped…but his grandfather is on his trail, and has a few surprises up his cape. “The Moving Finger” is a macabre tale of madness…or the utmost sanity. In “You Know They Got a Hell of a Band,” a young couple is about to attend an amazing rock concert…which may last for the rest of eternity. “The Ten O’Clock People” tells of two societies who live beneath normal human radar; one is benevolent, while the other is bent on world domination. “Crouch End” and “The Doctor’s Case” are great examples of British fiction by an American, the latter about Sherlock Holmes. In the fantisful “The House on Maple Street,” four children are about to unlock the secrets of their home. “Umney’s Last Case” is a bizarre crime-noir, about the power an author has over his story, and vice versa. “Head Down” is an enchanting essay about kids and baseball.

    NIGHTMARES & DREAMSCAPES. Stephen King. Need I say any more than that? A wonderful, intriquing, and entertaining collection, this book is guaranteed to occupy a welcomed place on your bookshelf. This collection goes to show why Stephen King is one of contemporary literature’s best writers.

  • Cicely Vitolo
    14:29 on May 31st, 2013
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    I’ve been a Stephen King fan for many years. His ability to make the most mundance events or setting terrifying, and his keen grasp of human nature and human foibles place him near the top in pure literary genius. That he happens to write horror is only incidental, and in a way unfortunate, for the mass market appeal of his novels and stories has prevented King receiving due credit as one of the great American writers of modern times.

    Perhaps King’s legacy will begin to change with “Everything’s Eventual”. This is an eclectic and versatile collection of short stories, in which his talents are generously displayed. It has been a while since I’ve read Stephen King, and I couldn’t help but notice a subtle change in style – a melancholly wisdom and maturity I’ve overlooked in any of King’s earlier works. “All that you Love Will be Carried Away” is a beautifully sad, yet darkly humorous story that captures this theme of resigned fatalism. “The Man in the Black Suit”, while as terrifying a story as King has ever writen, has a depth and moral undertone that transcends King’s familiar “Good vs. Evil” story line. For shear gut-turning terror, it doesn’t get much better than “Autopsy Room Four”: leave it to King to have the reader not wanting to turn the page, yet unable to overcome the morbid curiosity, while at the same time finding humor in an autopsy about to be performed on a very-much-alive patient. “The Death of Jack Hamilton” tells a tale of the John Derringer gang, and “In the Deathroom” finds an American reporter caught in a brutal in a south American interrogation chamber. “The Road Virus Heads North” is told from the roughly autobiographical viewpoint that King does so well, and who but King could make even a yard sale ominous?

    There isn’t a bad story in the lot, though I found “The Little Sisters of Eluria” playing on themes a bit too familiar. But I suspect diehard “Dark Tower” fans may find it one of the best in the collection. Other tales of divorce and marriages gone bad, a sinister conspiracy, and a haunted hotel room reflect classic King morbidness, yet also build on this deeper, philosophical undercurrent.

    Each story is either introduced or closed with a brief vignette by King. While typically I find editorial inserts annoying, In “Eventual” I found them interesting and instrumental to the overall success and flow of the book. In summary, a must read for Stephen King fans, and a great way for the unintiated to get introduced to him.

  • Mike Donnelly
    14:48 on May 31st, 2013
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    Several of the short stories in this collection appear to be vignettes; something that could have been part of a much larger story, but instead became a scene in the life of the characters. Some of the stories that try to be clever (e.g., “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French) end up getting caught in their “gee see how clever I am” storylines and ended up being a disappointment to me, particularly as I had that one figured out about halfway through. One story, “The Road Virus Heads North,” I remember very well as being very similar to a story from Rod Serling’s “Night Gallery” TV series.

    Getting past my complaints, there are some very good stories. Perhaps the best story in this collection is an entry based on the characters from the Dark Tower series, “The Little Sisters of Eluria.” I was fascinated by this story, and occasionally chilled, from beginning to end. Even after I realized the nature of the sisters I was still chilled. Stephen King tells this story at his best.

    “Autopsy Room Four” bears a strong resemblance to another movie or TV show I saw a long time ago about a paralyzed man, but King manages to spice this one up and I admit that while I was expecting an all-too-familiar story, I enjoyed the ending. “The Man in the Black Suit” also provides you with a similar feeling to some of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s stories, but again with a nice twist at the end.

    “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away” left me somewhat dry. I never cared about the main character, was somewhat puzzled by many of his motivations, and became somewhat bored. The central point of enjoyment in this story was his interesting hobby. “The Death of Jack Hamilton” is well written, with very good visualization, but do not expect this to be other than the tale of how a gangster’s life ends.

    “In the Deathroom” is a story that could have been on “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.” The story is vaguely disturbing, and the situation hopeless for the protagonist. At first you even momentarily wonder who the protagonist is. Then you wonder why you are watching a show about this person, as his situation seems so inevitable, and the inevitability makes you squirm as you long for hope. A nicely executed story with a very Hitchcockian ending.

    “Everything’s Eventual” is a very clever story that could easily be the basis of a novel. After “The Little Sisters of Eluria” this story is one of my favorites. The central character has a talent that is somewhere between science fiction, fantasy and the paranormal. The life the central character, Dink Earnshaw, leads is quite – shall we say bizarre? I would rather the reader discover how he came to be earning nearly nothing while having everything a person could want, and why he dumps the remainder of his money into the storm drains at the end of each week.

    “L.T.’s Theory of Pets” is a little bizarre and twisted, and probably because I spent at least a little while trying to understand what the ending meant means that the story did what King intended. It matters not that the story had a rather ambiguous ending, just that the story makes you think.

    “Lunch at the Gotham Café” is gloriously bizarre and surreal, a juxtaposition of the real and the unreal. As the story progresses I felt a dreamlike quality to the telling, wondering whether I was going to wake up at some point. Fortunately, or not, the story maintains the surreal feeling to the ending that surprised me by being different from what I expected. This story is another of the better stories in this collection.

    “1408″ may have had some elements of H.P. Lovecraft, though I suspect such elements may have been unintentional on the part of King. I enjoyed the story because King very pointedly tells you the problem with room 1408 has nothing to do with ghosts and the supernatural. That room is just wrong. I considered this story another of the better stories, good for generating a lot of thought after reading it.

    “Riding the Bullet” was previously available on the internet. This story is in many respects a traditional ghost story, where you believe and fear, and then you realize it probably was not real, and then you find evidence that it may have been. While this story could have been a bit boring because it is similar to a number of other ghost stories, King injected enough elements into it to keep it vigorous.

    “Luckey Quarter” is another of those stories that could have been showcased on a show such as “Twilight Zone” or “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.” This time our protagonist is an overworked hotel maid. She has too many bills and too little opportunity. However, a “luckey” quarter comes her way and suddenly opportunities present themselves; or do they? This is a Stephen King story, after all.

    Each of these stories is well written. There are several stories that are merely good, but there are even more stories that are very good or even excellent. The collection could have been pared down a bit, but given that we each have different favorites, what I thought was a weaker story someone else may have thought great. The collection is what it is. Worth having in any King fan’s collection or for anyone who enjoys a well-written tale.

  • Chris Hurn
    15:24 on May 31st, 2013
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    Amazon, in their wisdom, links audio and print versions of books together such that a review for one edition also shows up on the product pages for all of the other editions. This may be suitable for most books, but Amazon shouldn’t have done it for “Everything’s Eventual” for a very simple reason:

    The print version of “Everything’s Eventual” contains 14 short stories.

    The audio version of “Everything’s Eventual” contains only 5 short stories!

    The audio versions of the remaining 9 short stories are published separately.

    The collection “The Man in the Black Suit: 4 Dark Tales” contains the audio versions of “The Man in the Black Suit”, “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away”, “The Death of Jack Hamilton”, and “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French”.

    The collection “Blood and Smoke” contains the audio versions of “1408″, “In the Deathroom” and “Lunch at the Gotham Café”.

    Finally, “Riding the Bullet” and “LT’s Theory of Pets” are individual products each containing the audio version of only one short story.

    This review is primarily for people who are considering buying the audio version of “Everything’s Eventual”. I’ll start by saying a few words about each of the five stories.

    “Everything’s Eventual” – 3 stars

    This is a fairly long (2 hours) story about a young guy with a strange supernatural power – he can kill people by remote control. The story is interesting, and yet it doesn’t really grab you, and the ending is disappointing.

    “Autopsy Room Four” – 5 stars

    The best story of the five! A man comes to consciousness but is totally paralyzed, and discovers that he is assumed to be dead and a doctor is about to perform an autopsy on him! I was so scared that I hardly dared to continue listening to the story.

    “The Little Sisters of Eluria” – 3 stars

    Too long (almost 3 hours), too silly, and Roland (the main character, from “The Dark Tower” series) acts like an amateur instead of the hard-boiled experienced gunslinger he is supposed to be. Roland is seriously injured and awakes in a kind of nightmare hospital. Then he manages to flee with the help of, well, someone. Ho-hum.

    “Lucky Quarter” – 4 stars

    A “what if” story, about a chambermaid who gets a tip of only 25 cents from a hotel guest. But it’s a lucky quarter and using it in a slot machine starts the chambermaid on a path to riches. Or does it? Perhaps it was only a dream? Short (30 minutes) but effective.

    “The Road Virus Heads North” – 4 stars

    An author of horror books (now who could that be based on?) buys a scary painting at a yard sale. Only it turns out that this painting really is scary. The artist committed suicide and the new owner isn’t likely to survive owning this painting either.

    So, one very good story, two fairly poor ones and two in between. An OK collection, although a bit disappointing. The stories are read by five different professional readers, and all of them do a good job.

    If audio books aren’t your thing then you should buy “Everything’s Eventual” as a printed book instead. Then you get all 14 stories, and it’s cheaper too.

    Rennie Petersen

  • Micheal
    17:05 on May 31st, 2013
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    This was my first reading of Mr. King’s work and I was amazed. This book held my attention for days and I’ve yet to finsh reading it. My absolute favorite is “Rainy Season.” I keep re-reading this story which is why I haven’t finished the book. Great reads include “Sorry, Right Number” “Dolan’s Caddilac” and “Chattery Teeth” I am a now a die-hard and devoted fan and I reccomend this to anyone beginning a Stephen King collection.

  • I know
    17:23 on May 31st, 2013
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    This book is really fun.
    I’ve read a bunch of the reviews but haven’t heard one mention the story “You Know They Have a Hell of a Band.”
    This story just creeped the heck out of me.
    I had a nightmare when I was a kid just like this so it hit home big time.
    I know Stephen King isn’t the only person afraid of small towns. If you are also, this story will be very entertaining.
    One of a few small town stories in this one.
    Unlike the other reviewers, I liked every story, yes some more than others but none were disappointments.
    Definitely worth a buy.
    You’ll re-read it for sure.

  • yeafordean
    18:35 on May 31st, 2013
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    I love taking long drives, and when I take those long drives, I love listening to audiobooks. Let me set the stage: when I listened to Nightmares and Dreamscapes, I was on my way to 29 Palms from Texas, all by myself, via back roads. Dark, unlit, deserted back roads. Somewhat unwisely, I popped this tape in around 8pm, somewhere in New Mexico, just as the sun was starting to set and make everything shadowy. Needless to say, the stories were a bit scarier than they would have been had I read them safely in my own, well-lit house with the alarm system at the ready. I credit (blame!) the actors for this, for they were outstanding! For example:

    Crouch End: read by Tim Curry, quite possibly the scariest man in existence. I was familiar with the Cthulu myth, but to hear it through the imagination of Stephen King and the excellent, creepy and threatening Mr. Curry was terrifying.

    Rainy Season: the very idea of maniacal toads raining from the sky is absurd, and the voice of Lisa Simpson doesn’t seem scary at all. But put the two together on a dark, deserted road and you have a recipe for real fear.

    The rest of this volume of stories is very good, if thought-provoking rather than terrifying. Vengeance lovers, rejoice! Dolan’s Cadillac is a must-read (listen), as is The House on Maple Street.

  • Rick Ellers
    18:52 on May 31st, 2013
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    I listened to the first volume of the audio tapes, and I have to say that I had mixed feelings about it. Dolan’s Cadillac was very well read, Rob Lowe did an excellent job with it. I also liked Rainy Season, although I have to say that it was a little disturbing to hear Lisa Simpson reading Stephen King. Some of the readers aren’t very good at reading out loud, though.

  • Ben Backus
    19:28 on May 31st, 2013
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    Welcome back Stephen King!
    I thought you had gone totally soft after your last few books.

    This one carried me all the way back to the vintage King. Every story is worth reading, and some send those familiar little shivers down your spine, as you glance behind you when reading.

    No need for me to review each story – get the book and get spooked with the rest of us.

    Keep them coming like this one!

  • Ken Nobo
    21:16 on May 31st, 2013
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    I’m not a big Stephen King fan but Nightmares & Dreamscapes is quite good. I worked for three years as a summer camp counselor and when you have a group of 15 year old boys, they don’t want to hear cheesy ghost stories or little kid stories. I read them a few of King’s short stories and they LOVED them. While his Novels tend to drone on a bit too much for my taste, his short stories are just right. Some of the ones in this book are better than others, but they’re all pretty good. I actually think the stories in “Night Shift” are a little better, but both books are excellent.

  • Frank I. Locust
    22:08 on May 31st, 2013
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    I know I need to be honest up front: I didn’t really enjoy this book like I thought I would. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have plenty of merits. I just have reasons for seeing certain downsides that perhaps other people have noticed, too.

    I had never read any Steven King until my friend gave me “Night Shift,” and it was then that I knew what all the fuss was about. I love to be scared, so this seemed like a natural place to continue getting the chills. However, “Night Shift” and “Everything’s Eventual” are story collections that must be at least twenty years apart, and we’ve all grown since then, and I understand SK’s desire to continually improve on himself. The end result, though, left me wanting more.

    Take the story “Lunch at the Gotham Cafe” as an example. The ridiculously insane waiter is the type of character that I admire SK for creating, and the story itself is both funny and unsettling (he can’t quite shy away from the explicit imagery, can he?). But he seemed so much more focused on creating these intricate character studies, giving the soon-to-be ex-spouses so much to grouse about that the result is they barely seem to care what just happened to them. Don’t get me wrong–as readers we definitely want fleshed-out stories and a deeper insight into characters. But it just feels like as a result, he left all the spookiness behind.

    Same goes for “In the Deathroom”–superb writing and spot-on stereotypes (if such a thing can be good), but not at all scary. And the title story had such a great set-up, but the payoff was weirdly political and an incredible letdown for me. At this point, I must sound like the biggest inept, non-fan, simply wanting him to scare me and then move on. Maybe I am.

    But then, there are stories that just knocked me out. I read “1408″ while visiting some relatives in Chicago, and at night–even with my mom sleeping in the same room–I was completely spooked out and could not sleep. In this story, SK gets everything right. Ghosts have been done so many times; what would it be like to be haunted by things that are so against our nature that even considering them is to feel as though you’re slipping into some awful hallucination? It’s hard to describe how it felt to read the story without giving anything away. Let’s just say that he put into words what I had been contemplating for years. There are definitely things beyond us, wrong things, and they’re not your typical spirit in unrest.

    “The Road Virus Heads North” gives you that giddy feeling of impending doom and being immensely glad you’re not the protagonist, and SK once again brings to life the little thoughts that I’m sure we all have but never voice. (What if that guy in the painting just…turned and stared at me?) “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away” has this great sense of emotional isolation and longing that works perfectly with the quirky plot subject, and “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What it is in French” is like literally falling into a dream within many dreams, and proves that SK can weave complex, or at least impactful, characterization while scaring the crap out of the reader.

    So, there are many things I love about this book. Sorry for the long-winded review. I guess what I was trying to say all along is that SK doesn’t have to prove to anyone that he is a master writer, master story-teller. But he does have to keep the scares coming.

  • iPad user
    22:36 on May 31st, 2013
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    You find them all: the style of the Green Mile, IT, Bag of Bones… It’s another King size, but you’ll enjoy the variety of these short tales. A must have After Supper Ghost Stories collection…

  • marreese
    23:53 on May 31st, 2013
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    Like most people, I own a stack of Stephen King books, and for some reason I’ve never gotten around to review the ones I liked best, which makes me sort of ashamed of myself, since I keep saying that the quality of King’s writing is often underrated. This is not the usual Stephen King book, this one is actually pretty mellow, compared to Carrie, for example, (that was the first of his books I read, and I hadn’t read anything that gory before), but it still has its share of scary stuff, like The Ten O’ Clock people, and The Moving Finger (after I read that one I really felt kind of nervous about the bathroom sink for a few days). I only could’t get through the essay at the end, Head Down, because I don’t understand absolutely anything about baseball. My favorites were Dedication, The End of the Whole Mess, The Ten O’Clock people, The House on Maple Street, and Popsy (oddly funny if you think about it). I suppose hardcore fans of King’s horror will be sort of confused by this book, but I think any lover of short stories, like me, is bound to enjoy it.

  • Oretha Haslip
    1:33 on June 1st, 2013
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    Most of Stephen King’s novels are mere tripe, but he is great in short forms and the epic. A self described bad explainer, he does best when restrained or let free. My favorites in this collection were “The Ten O’Clock People,” “Sorry, Right Number,” “Chattery Teeth,” “The Moving Finger,” and “You Know They Got One Hell of a Band.” Since several reviewers have compared “Crouch End” to H.P. Lovecraft, I plan to read his work. Overall, a good collection of short stories, some scary, some funny, and most were interesting.

  • Kool Aid
    1:46 on June 1st, 2013
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    First, I am a long time reader of Stephen King, and as such, I think I’m warranted when I say that his short story collections have always included some of his best work. Unfortunately, if that still remains true, then it would appear that we’re getting close to the bottom of the barrell when it comes to unpublished works by the Master of Terror.

    Don’t get me wrong – any writer would give his left hand to write half as well as King, and these stories if attributed to someone else would be an impressive collection indeed. However, coming from King, I was rather unimpressed by the sheer lack of nerves that I had while I was reading the stories. His last collection, Nightmares and Dreamscapes, kept me enraptured from beginning to end; I couldn’t put it down, and not because I was afraid, but because every *single* story in that collection was better than the previous one. Not so with Everything’s Eventual.

    King writes in the introduction that the stories were ordered by chance, by the draw of a card. At first, I thought that was an interesting way to arrange things, but after plodding about halfway through the book, I realized that the “sheer chance” had resulted in an uneven presentation of stories. Some were very good (the title story, for instance; “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away”; and the story of the boy who meets the devil while fishing), but most were downright formulaic and bland (“The Road Virus Heads North” or “1408″ — the latter a terrible attempt to evoke Lovecraftian terror). And as an avid King fan, the inclusion of “Riding the Bullet”, “The Little Sisters of Eluria”, and “LT’s Theory of Pets” seemed somewhat of a gyp, as I already owned these stories in the formats they were originally released.

    Perhaps it’s good that King appears to be determined to step down once his Scribner contract is fulfilled; hopefully he’ll go out at the top of his game, like a Seinfeld or Cheers. Unfortunately, given this collection of stories and his last full-length novel, it seems to this Constant Reader that Mr. King is writing purely for his own bemusement and not for those fans waiting for the scares we received in It, Christine, and The Stand.

    Overall, for a King fan the collection is satisfying in its own odd way; I’m glad I bought it, and glad that I read it. But would I recommend it, especially to a non-King fan? Nope.

  • YAHOO!
    2:45 on June 1st, 2013
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    If a hideous monster with an evil leer and razor sharp teeth tore Stephen King apart limb-from-limb, Everything’s Eventual would go down as one of the FINEST works of his life.

    Quite often authors, singers, writers and performers fall into a rut, repeating themselves until they unwittingly almost become parodies of their own successful styles. They stop growing and mark time (while collecting the $$$).

    You CANNOT say that about Stephen King in Everything’s Eventual. In this book of 14 highly-polished little literary gems you can SEE how he has expanded on his huge talents and advanced his art. Some of the stories are more-or-less horror stories. Others don’t quite fall into that classification. But not a single one of them is stale.

    For instance Autopsy Room Four is a modern-day twist on the Hitchock-type tale of a man who’s alive and considered dead. I’m NOT giving anything away by telling you that — and as soon as you read it you’ll howl with delight at the surprise ending (there are almost two endings to this story and both are a great).

    King’s stories move like guided missiles, climbing to new heights in plot and style, swerving in brand-new twists (funny and sad) — and all the while he seems to be (respectfully) playing with the genre he has helped to popularize. If you ever thought King was repeating himself rest assured: he does NOT here. I love short stories and this is now my most prized collection (I will NEVER sell it or lend it…but I WILL re-read it).

    Without listing them all, my favorites here include the book’s title story, Everything’s Eventual (a tale about a 14-year-old with an unusual talent; his narrative from the kid’s
    point of view sounds JUST like a 14-year-old I know…King gets inside the kid’s head); The Death of Jack Hamilton (about gangster John Dillinger); In the Deathroom (a story about a captive with a twist with a great ending); LT’s Theory of Pets (do you laugh or cry…or both?); the Road Virus Heads North (classic suspense from start to finish); Lunch at the Gotham Cafe (he got the idea seeing a couple argue at a cafe); and 1408 (offspring of The Shining?).

    King explains along with each story how he got the idea and/or why he decided to end it the way he did. The bottom line: Everything’s Eventual is a page-turner and one the BEST short story collections you will ever read.

  • Joe Beam
    3:22 on June 1st, 2013
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    I would recommend this book just for the introductory essay (see below).

    [Note: I made some Mormon angry because of my negative reviews of books out to prove the Book of Mormon, and that person has been slamming my reviews almost as fast as they are posted.]

    So your “helpful” vote is greatly appreciated. Thanks

    King is a master writer, and I enjoyed this collection. I loved “Umney’s Last Case” (evocative of 1930s crime fiction). Also liked the “House on Maple Street” (it kept me turning the pages).

    The book is worth it for the introductory essay by Steven King. Here are some of the great lines from that essay, and I hope they make my short review worth reading.

    Steven King wrote:

    “When I was a kid I believed everything I was told, everything I read, and every dispatch sent out by my own overheated imagination. This made for more than a few sleepless nights, but it also filled the world I lived in with colors and textures I would not have traded for a lifetime of restful nights. I knew even then, you see, that there were people in the world–too many of them, actually–whose imaginative senses were eight numb or completely deadened, and who lived in a mental state skin to colorblindness.”

    Robert McCammon said something similar his brilliant coming-of-age novel, “Boy’s Life”

    “See, this is my opinion: we all start out knowing magic. We are born with whirlwinds, forest fires, and comets inside us. We are born able to sing to birds and read the clouds and see our destiny in grains of sand. But then we get the magic educated right out of our souls. We get it churched out, spanked out, washed out, and combed out. We get put on the straight and narrow and told to be responsible. Told to act our age. Told to grow up, for God’s sake. And you know why we were told that? Because the people doing the telling were afraid of our wildness and youth, and because the magic they knew made them ashamed and sad of what they’d allowed to wither in themselves.”

  • mtdawg
    5:19 on June 1st, 2013
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    At 692 pages, “Nightmares & Dreamscapes” is a doorstopper of a book. I planned to read it a story at a time over a period of weeks, but as usual got hooked on King and read it straight through, right from his usual folksy introduction (each of which I am sure he writes solely for me!) to the charming little moral folktale tacked on at the end. The stories are to say the least, diverse. I would call this collection “King’s Scrapbook.”

    “Dolan’s Cadillac” highly regarded by most Amazon reviewers is very hard tech for King. Interestingly, he says in his notes that technical stuff bores him, but it had to be done for this story. I have no more interest than he does in the proper “arc of descent;” I would have been just as mindlessly satisfied if he had shot the Cadillac out of a cannon, so it’s not one of my favorites.

    “Clattery Teeth” I just know SK had a hoot of a time writing it. He lovingly sets the scene and characters and then puts them at the mercy of a set of not-so-funny joke teeth (that wear spats). It’s 80 degrees more grotesque than the “Young Frankenstein,” and I felt guilty for laughing.

    “The Moving Finger” Mr. Mitla is the perfectly normal man living a perfectly normal life when one morning he goes into his bathroom, and a finger is emerging from his bathroom sink drain and tapping on the porcelain. No one can see this finger except Mr. Mitla, and he slowly goes bonkers and his entire life is in a shambles. Unlike “Clattery Teeth” this one is terrifying. See for yourself.

    “My Pretty Pony” though highly acclaimed, didn’t much interest me UNTIL I read in Notes that the exquisitely sensitive little boy, Clive Banning, grew up to be a hardened killer in an unpublished Richard Bachman novel. We leave Clive at 7-years old in the Pony story.

    “The House on Maple Street” delighted me because children are empowered and the bad guy gets his just desserts in a most explosive fashion. I was all-around satisfied.

    “Umley’s Last Case” is my favorite. SK takes a spin in Raymond Chandler land. He sets the scene meticulously and the characters are perfect. I was reminded of Nathaniel West’s “Day of the Locust.” Then things start going askew in a very King-like way. What if the author of P.I. books decided he liked the detective’s life better than his own, and decided to swap places? What would happen? Would it be too far out if the detective who has never lived outside a book set in the 1930′s had to spend a week toilet training himself? (Characters in hard-boiled novels never have to go to the bathroom.)

    There are 20 stories in “Nightmares & Dreamscapes.” It is not as brilliantly crafted as “Everything’s Eventual” nor is it as well organized as “Skeleton Crew” and “Night Shift.” I don’t think many readers will like ALL of the stories, but there are such a variety, that most of the readers will like SOME of the stories, and some will like MOST of the stories. Chances are everyone will find one or two that will stay with them forever.

  • Tera Justino
    5:45 on June 1st, 2013
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    Stephen King has been queried many times: “How do you write?” His simplistic (if cunning) response: “One word at a time”. The “Master Storyteller” has an abysmal well of ideas that never seem to end. Everything’s Eventual marks the literary giant’s seventh (if you include Hearts in Atlantis) collection of short stories since the alpha, Night Shift was published over two decades before. All the compilations have had one thing in common over the years: They all have a trash-to-treasure ratio that varies with substance. Everything’s Eventual is no different. There are several mediocre tales, but for the most part it lives up to the hype with moderate success. In Everything’s Eventual, as with other King SS collections, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Well all have our favorites from these short story collections. A few of the exceptional gems are: “Autopsy Room Four”, “The Man in the Black Suit”, “The Road Virus Heads North”, “Riding the Bullet” and a short novella “The Little Sisters of Eluria” (which serves as a short, welcomed prequel to the Dark Tower series). Most of SK’s books will be adored by his rabid and faithful fan base regardless of substance; Everything’s Eventual is a must have for any fan and a great pickup for the casual reader. There’s a little something for everyone inside…if you have the courage to enter!

  • Chris Foley
    6:33 on June 1st, 2013
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    King is so amazingly and easily readable, that even some of these not-great stories entertain. They read like casual conversation, and offer up nothing in the form of regret. As a result, the overlong “Riding the Bullet” and “The Death of Jack Hamilton” don’t irritate as much as they simply fade. Many of King’s themes pop up here, the best and most easily recognized being the title story. “Everything’s Eventual” features a young man with special powers that is enlisted by a Shop-type agency to do possibly dirty deeds. But, as the boy is young and not particularly bright, he follows along, feeling important for the first time. The undertone of loneliness and neediness in this story is what really sticks with you. Perhaps King (with his own special powers) is most able to identify with this recurring character trope.

    “Lunch at the Gotham Cafe” and “1408″ are great shockers. “1408″ really does creep, and adds some new scary material to perhaps the oldest horror subgenre: the haunted house. “Lunch at the Gotham Cafe” takes a disintigrating marriage, and quite literally puts it to the grindstone. This one stands out as a story not just about what it seems to be about. It is as multilayered as any piece of fine literature.

    “The Little Sisters of Elluria” takes place in the Darktower world, and is a fun aside for Darktower fans. Not only that, its an effective story in itself, though one with an episodic feel due to the lack of Roland’s character arc. In fact, he is just passing through.

    The remaining stories don’t stand out for me. “The Road Virus Heads North” was silly, and has been done before, by King and others. “Autopsy Room Four” was well told, but again, its almost cliche now. I believe Poe got the closest to perfecting that one.

    A handful of non-horror non-supernatural stories stand out as worthy attempts, but fail to hit the mark. “L.T.’s Theory of Pets” gets very close, but nothing near to some of the remarkable work done in “Hearts in Atlantis”.

    Despite the three star rating above, King is still one of the best, and his short stories often rank among his finest works. One could do a lot worse than reading this one.

  • Quantcast
    8:20 on June 1st, 2013
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    As an enormous fan of King, this book was warmly welcolmed in my arms. I wasn’t dissapointed. As always, when it comes to King, I was sold. There’s also a particular reason why I welcomed this book so much: In various books about King, I learned about many of those early and hard to find King stories, all the uncollected ones, and the rare ones. I was a bit sad about realizing that maybe I would never ever own these oddities. Then, finally, a new collection of King-stories showed up, mostly containing some of those old and hard to find stories. I was happy! And the book also featured a few new ones. Again, with Night Shift and Skeleton Crew, I liked all the stories, even the teleplay Sorry, Right Number (I haven’t seen the adaptation yet), the Brooklyn August-poem and the Head Down-essay. I loved The Night Flier, The Moving Finger, Chattery Teeth, You Know They Got a Hell of a Band, Home Delivery, Crouch End, Rainy Season. My Pretty Pony really touched me. I don’t know a hang about baseball (I am Danish, sorry!), but King makes it interesting. All I can say is that any true King fans must read this book. There’s also a Sherlock Holmes-mystery involved. I only wished that King had included stories like The Cat from Hell, Man With a Belly, Pinfall, and some others of those hard to find. What about this story “The King Family and the Farting Cookie” that he wrote for his children some years ago? That could have been major fun to own that gem!

  • Tim Andrews
    8:41 on June 1st, 2013
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    I’m biased when it comes to author Stephen King. It was “The Shining” that made me want to be a writer in the first place, so I credit much of my fortune to his ability to engage me as a reader (and terrify me when I was nine years old). For those who are curious about this book because of “1408,” know that just based on the movie’s trailers the film is nothing like the short story (which is one of 14 in this book).

    “1408″ is actually a nod to horror master H.P. Lovecraft, and King almost seems to channel the man through this story. It is creepy and never over the top, and it’s not even the best one in this book.

    The other 13 stories are decent reads, though some are less scary than others, but I don’t think any horror or King fan will be disappointed by this collection. Everything from the devil to undead drivers are covered here, and it is King in best form.

  • noloign
    10:43 on June 1st, 2013
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    Stephen King just gets better and better. His fourteen short stories highlight his mastery of a difficult form of writing. I particularly liked his down home remarks at the beginning or end of each story explaining a little about how he happened to write it and what he was trying to achieve. King has the uncanny ability to talk directly to the reader, one-on-one as if you are the only person in the world.

    The stories have been previously published (I had read the four that first appeared in “The New Yorker”), but I was delighted to have them in book form and reread them with great pleasure. For all you Dark Tower fans, there is an excellent addition, “The Little Sisters of Eluria.”

    Not one of the fourteen stories disappointed me; they were varied: humorous, reflective, and scary. If you think the Old Master might have lost his touch at scaring you sideways, try “The Road Virus Heads North.” Some particular favorites: the title piece “Everything’s Eventual” told by an oh-so-believable teenaged boy made this sinister tale poignant as well as inevitable. King saw a handsome couple arguing in a fancy New York restaurant and somehow came up with “Lunch at the Gotham Café” (see cover of book for illustration. Be sure to check the back cover as well!). I’ll let SK tell you about the whys of “In the Deathroom.”

    “This is a slightly Kafkaesque story about an interrogation room in the South American version of Hell. In such stories, the fellow being interrogated usually ends up spilling everything and then being killed (or losing his mind). I wanted to write one with a happier ending, however unreal that might be. And here it is.”

    But we know in our hearts that it isn’t going to be that “happy,” don’t we?

    “Everything’s Eventual” is an unqualified blue ribbon group of short stories. I predict new King fans on the horizon

  • Baxolile
    12:28 on June 1st, 2013
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    This collection of stories from King spans several genres most notable of which are the vampire stories (Popsy, The Night Flier), human-eating frogs (sort of gives a new twist to the term “raining cats and dogs”), a hand in the drain which had me looking at the drain in my shower room, a city of famous dead musicians and his own foray into sportswriting in “Head Down” where he describes the exploits of his son’s Little League Team in Bangor Maine (I think he’s more than qualified to cover his favorite Red Sox).

    What makes King’s writing particularly effective is that he tells tales of common people(like you and me) experiencing extraordinary things. When you put this book down, you can’t help but wonder if the same thing will happen to you. I also have the sense that these stories were written for the sheer joy of writing regardless if it makes the author a quick buck.

  • benbuyum
    13:13 on June 1st, 2013
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    Amazon, in their wisdom, links audio and print versions of books together such that a review for one edition also shows up on the product pages for all of the other editions. This may be suitable for most books, but Amazon shouldn’t have done it for “Everything’s Eventual” for a very simple reason:

    The print version of “Everything’s Eventual” contains 14 short stories.

    The audio version of “Everything’s Eventual” contains only 5 short stories!

    The audio versions of the remaining 9 short stories are published separately.

    The collection “The Man in the Black Suit: 4 Dark Tales” contains the audio versions of “The Man in the Black Suit”, “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away”, “The Death of Jack Hamilton”, and “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French”.

    The collection “Blood and Smoke” contains the audio versions of “1408″, “In the Deathroom” and “Lunch at the Gotham Café”.

    Finally, “Riding the Bullet” and “LT’s Theory of Pets” are individual products each containing the audio version of only one short story.

    This review is primarily for people who are considering buying the audio version of “Everything’s Eventual”. I’ll start by saying a few words about each of the five stories.

    “Everything’s Eventual” – 3 stars

    This is a fairly long (2 hours) story about a young guy with a strange supernatural power – he can kill people by remote control. The story is interesting, and yet it doesn’t really grab you, and the ending is disappointing.

    “Autopsy Room Four” – 5 stars

    The best story of the five! A man comes to consciousness but is totally paralyzed, and discovers that he is assumed to be dead and a doctor is about to perform an autopsy on him! I was so scared that I hardly dared to continue listening to the story.

    “The Little Sisters of Eluria” – 3 stars

    Too long (almost 3 hours), too silly, and Roland (the main character, from “The Dark Tower” series) acts like an amateur instead of the hard-boiled experienced gunslinger he is supposed to be. Roland is seriously injured and awakes in a kind of nightmare hospital. Then he manages to flee with the help of, well, someone. Ho-hum.

    “Lucky Quarter” – 4 stars

    A “what if” story, about a chambermaid who gets a tip of only 25 cents from a hotel guest. But it’s a lucky quarter and using it in a slot machine starts the chambermaid on a path to riches. Or does it? Perhaps it was only a dream? Short (30 minutes) but effective.

    “The Road Virus Heads North” – 4 stars

    An author of horror books (now who could that be based on?) buys a scary painting at a yard sale. Only it turns out that this painting really is scary. The artist committed suicide and the new owner isn’t likely to survive owning this painting either.

    So, one very good story, two fairly poor ones and two in between. An OK collection, although a bit disappointing. The stories are read by five different professional readers, and all of them do a good job.

    If audio books aren’t your thing then you should buy “Everything’s Eventual” as a printed book instead. Then you get all 14 stories, and it’s cheaper too.

    Rennie Petersen

  • whats'my name
    14:41 on June 1st, 2013
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    Ten O’Clock People, Rainy Season, Crouch End and Suffer the Children, this collection deserves a very solid 4 stars. These are solid and pure horror stories which are evidences that no one writes horror that good when King decides to write it the way he used to write when he started his career and these four stories (the first one almost a novella)are a showcase of everything that King makes good for a superp (horror) story: Spooky themes, well rounded characters even in one or two brushes of sentences, absurdly funny but to-the-point similes (very unlike that syrupy Koontz) King is a master of and a bizarre way of storytelling strangely addictive which I have yet to find in any author around the globe. While three of the stories may be tributes to other masters, Ten O Clock People is unashamedly King with over-the-top situations and with an unusual bubble of laughter when you are sweating through a chill-land waiting for the demons to rise and attack.

    Among other stories of course there are some clunkers but who has not? Even Poe had some clunkers but in time they are filtered through the history so King deserves its clunkers. But do not worry this collection embraces so many that apart from those four “five star” ones, everyone will find something, mostly in Dolan’s Cadillac and the Moving Finger. There is a story dealing with how the world comes to an end (I cannot remember its long name)it is highly spooky and another proof that King is not a good storyteller but a very INTELLIGENT one also.

    This third collection convinces me once more that King is a very skilled author and it actually requires to have some literary taste and intelligence to grasp his essentials. Kudos from a four-year fan who used to think King was a mere schlock- meister.

  • Than liberty?
    15:00 on June 1st, 2013
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    I threw this book in the trash. Not because I was acting the part of a pious little church mouse thinking, “Harry Potter is the Devil”, but more because it scared me. Scared the Holy juices right off my protective little cross necklace I keep around my neck at night. Scared me like an old woman gets scared when she realizes her hubby died sometime in the night as she slept beside him. Thanks a freakin lot, King! Thanks a lot, pal!

    Throwing his books away because they terrified isn’t something of a shocker. I’ve done it before. I did it with ‘It’, would have done it with ‘Cycle of the Warewolf’ if it wasn’t owned by the library. This book, Everything’s Eventual that is, was thrown away twice, and that’s where it sits right now,in the trash, tempting me to pick it up again for another read!

    This darn book is creepy. The voices heard in room 1408 will soon seem like they’re whispering to you. The “hungry” Devil that chats with a nine-year-old near the woods will soon be looking to see what you’ve caught out of the stream. I only read nine of these stories, all the screamers I’m sure. I didn’t go in order but based my selections on titles, starting with the Man in the Black Suit. Scared the pee out of me too, that one did.

    The Road Virus Heads North is the kind of tale that you know you shouldn’t read, the kind of story that you’ll regret reading at about 2:00AM when it’s just you alone with your thoughts. But dang it, it was so tempting and when I finished it, I was scared completely frozen! I couldn’t move, expecting that Metallica fan of a kid with the cannibal teeth to be staring back at me, smiling the same twisted smile described from the story.

    Maybe I’ll give into my impulse and fish that book out of the trash for the second time; maybe not, but that book will make you think that the next time you get up to get a drink at four in the morning and turn on the bedroom light that sits on the nightstand, that demon your mind’s created WILL really be staring back at you, smiling an eery grin.

    Riding the Bullet was intended to be a heart-warmer of a spook story but it still freaked me out. There is a story about Roland as a younger man for those of you who enjoy reading about his ongoing saga. All That You Love Will Be Carried Away is sad and scary at the same time and 1408 is terrifying. Other notables is the way ‘LT’s Theory of Pets’ will make you laugh silly, then sit still in utter shock at the end.

    Maybe, when you’ve read five or six stories in it, you’ll consider trashing this one too, ridding yourself of the opportunity to get anymore scared than you already are. Maybe, though, you’ll fish it out of the trash again and again, reading just one more story…..like I’m tempted to do right now.

    enjoy

  • rinnku
    16:02 on June 1st, 2013
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    In the title story of this 2002 short story collection, we meet a young man with the power to channel a fantastic universe and alter our reality just by typing a few words. I have a feeling Stephen King knows just how that feels.

    A writer who thinks stories are “found things” and never runs out of imagination, King seems to be something of the Dickens of our day. Yet while he may be rich and famous on account of his novels, short-story collections like this one best showcase his ample, verdant genius. Here you have 14 examples of the richness and diversity of King’s craft, each a springboard for examining the human condition.

    The common theme for nearly all of them is death. Death comes for a small boy in “The Man In The Black Suit”; for a separated couple in “Lunch At The Gotham Cafe”; for a scoffing travel writer in “1408″. We visit an autopsy room, a couple of prisons, a private jet, all with death hovering not too far away. Only one story, “Luckey Quarter”, is off subject, and curiously manages to be one of the most depressing items here.

    I first came away from this book feeling a little disappointed. “Quarter” is an underbaked story, and so was “In The Deathroom”, one of the prison tales. “Eventual” has a disjointed ending, as does “L.T.’s Theory Of Pets”. Two of this collection’s best-known stories, “Black Suit” and “Riding The Bullet”, about an unlucky hitchhiker, don’t merit their high reputation. But then I thought about each story, and realized two things. One, I was very into reading them while they were in front of me. Two, I was remembering each vividly, each title alone conjuring an ample store of memories.

    Also, King does bounce around like no one’s business. If you don’t like one story, hold on because the next one will be completely different. When you do like a story, there’s a good chance you’ll like the next one, too, and in a totally different way.

    The best stories in “Everything’s Eventual” are up there with the best King has ever written, including the terror classic “1408″ and the creepy but hilarious “Autopsy Room Four.” Other great stories here aren’t particularly in the horror genre; they just deal with the question of death in other ways. “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away” is King at his brutal best, detailing life at its lowest ebb with a game, piercing eye. And “The Death Of Jack Hamilton” allows for one of King’s most indelible characters in the famous person of John Dillinger, seen here as a noble loser with an inscrutable grin.

    King also includes brief explanations for each of his tales, some appearing before, some after. Do yourself a favor and read nothing before you read the tale itself. King’s magic is potent anyway, but it’s better still when you don’t know what’s coming. Because, with this guy, anything can.

  • Howard Weishar
    17:55 on June 1st, 2013
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    I liked this book for some of the stories King wrote. But, some of them were just boring and downright stupid. I’ve read King before, but man, he can do way better than that! But if you’re looking for a good and scary story, read “The Ten O’Clock People” or “Crouch End.” Another thing I don’t like about some of his stories is that they don’t get into the good parts until the story is almost over. I liked “You Know They’ve Got a Hell of a Band!” But, it needed to get more suspense and horror into it at least in the middle of the story. An alright book though!

  • Bo Jelly
    19:32 on June 1st, 2013
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    “Nightmares & Dreamscapes” sits somewhere nestled between the previous “Skeleton Crew” and the phenomenal “Night Shift”. True to typical King form, “Nightmares & Dreamscapes” collects 24 of his short stories into one well written and easily accessible book.

    While this one isn’t quite as good as “Nigh Shift” it is defiantly a great read. Of the 24 stories, there were at least 11 here that I found to be enjoyable, and some of the best short stories I have ever read. You have a fantastically original story of revenge in “Dolan’s Cadillac”, a fast paced (and again original) zombie tale in “Home Delivery”, an end of the world scenario (“The End of the Whole Mess”), vampires (both “The Night Flier” and “Popsy”) and some generally quick paced, thrilling stories of various nature like “The 10 o’clock People”, “Chattery Teeth”, “The Moving Finger” and “Rainy Season”.

    Even the stories that didn’t exactly tickle my fancy, weren’t that horrible either. While boarding on too long (at over 50 pages), “Head Down” is the only non-fiction piece of King’s I have read, and leave it to the master of horror to write about the excitement and thrill of Little League Baseball. There is the screen play “Sorry, Right Number”, “The Doctor’s Case” and “Umney’s Last Case” (both pastiche’s of other tales), and 3 or 4 other tales.

    Unfortunately, its the 3 short stories “It Grows on You”, “Dedication” and “My Pretty Pony” that bring this collection down a star. Boring, long, and with nowhere to go, it ws these 3 that caused me to pick up and put down “Nightmares and Dreamscapes” more than once. It’s a toss up for me between “Dedication” and “Pony” as to which was the worst here, but either way, both are much too long and do little to give the impression that King is the true master of horror he is coined to be.

    If there is one thing that “Nightmares” proves, it’s that Stephen King knows how to entice and capture readers in a story…and not just of horror, but of suspense, intrigue, and even stories that are true. Long, wordy novels, or short, quick paced and to the point stories, it makes no difference.

  • theonlinekenyan
    20:09 on June 1st, 2013
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    My favourite tale is probably Crouch End – a town, or more precisely Slaughter Towen – a macabre little tale about a place that used to exist that a couple of tourists come across one night, the main problem being it was a town believed to be full of black magic and sacrifice. The tourist’s husband investigates a strange noise behind a bush and next news he’s gone. She wanders into the local police station where they don’t seem really surprised about what’s happened, one of them goes to look for him…
    The best little story I’ve read.
    Chattery teeth – out of the Twilight Zone came, jumbo teeth!
    A man goes into a service station and they have a joke rack – on the joke rack are the biggest pair of walking teeth he has ever seen, he gets them for his son, he also picks up a hitchhiker.
    The hitchhiker decides he’s easy game and wants to rob him and take his car – the teeth, which according to the store owner have never really worked swing into action – they drag this guy out into the desert and eat him!
    There are tooooo many good stories here to mention – no King collection would be complete without it. On saying that though I think any horror reader would love it, if you don’t feel up to some of the phone book sized novels he has written.
    Fabulous!
    Each story a nugget of horror wisdom in easily digestable parts!

  • spmsnk
    20:54 on June 1st, 2013
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    I bought this book expecting to be disappointed, as I have been with much of King’s recent work. Well, I had a surprise in store for me, for there is not a clunker in the bunch. Several of the stories had no real supernatural element, but they were all horrific in one way or another. I will now review each story individually.

    1. “Autopsy Room Four” A man awakens inside a body bag, unable to move. Could this be what death is like? Mordantly humorous, this tale strongly reminded me of the fiction of the late Robert Bloch.

    2. “The Man in the Black Suit” A small boy meets the devil while fishing in the woods one day. Apparently this one won an O. Henry award. While it was quite effective and well-written, it was not one of my favorites.

    3. “All That You Love Will Be Carried Away” A strange tale of a suicidal traveling salesman and his collection of rest stop bathroom graffiti. I really liked this one, the ending was perfectly ambiguous. Love the title too.

    4. “The Death of Jack Hamilton” John Dillinger and his gang are involved in an eventually fatal shootout with the police. Gripping. I read it in one sitting.

    5. “In the Deathroom” A slightly Kafka-esque tale (by King’s own admission) about a man in a South American interrogation room. I liked the beginning, but the ending was quite unrealistic.

    6. “The Little Sisters of Eluria” A Dark Tower tale, in which Roland is attacked by mutants and trapped in a “hospital” run by nurses of death. Creepy and entertaining, Dark Tower fans will love this one. Originally published in the “Legends” anthology.

    7. “Everything’s Eventual” A high school dropout with an unusual talent stumbles onto a dream job…. or is it? A good one to choose for the title story.

    8. “L.T.’s Theory of Pets” A tale of a broken relationship that takes a shocking turn toward blood and tragedy at the end. I liked it a lot. Especially good if you can get the audio version (something I ususally hate) read by King himself.

    9. “The Road Virus Heads North” One of my two favorites in this collection. A horror writer purchases a bizarre painting that seems to…. change. Insidiously scary, it stayed in my mind for quite a while.

    10. “Lunch at the Gotham Cafe” Another story with no overtly supernatural element, and another one about the end of a marriage. Avoid waiters with skewed bowties! Originally published in an anthology entitled “Dark Love”

    11. “That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is in French” A woman enters into a very personal hell of deja vu. I liked it, but, in my opinion, it left me strangely unsatisfied.

    12. “1408″ The best of the collection, and one of my favorite King stories ever. A writer of exploitative “true ghost stories” books stays in a hotel room that is REALLY haunted. I consider myself to be an extremely jaded horror fan, but this one literally gave me full body chills that didn’t stop until long after I put the book down.

    13. “Riding the Bullet” If you can believe it, people once believed that this was going to start the e-book revolution. Still waiting for that one, eh? A college student meets Death while hitch hiking to visit his sick mother in the hospital. Makes you think about what choice YOU would make, doesn’t it?

    14. “Luckey Quarter” A very quiet tale about a cleaning lady who finds a “luckey” quarter as a tip. A good end to an altogether good collection.

  • joanindo
    21:46 on June 1st, 2013
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    While watching “Jeopardy” in his New York apartment, Howard Mitla hears the sound of a finger tap-tap-tapping in his bathroom sink. Is it coming from the drain? Why doesn’t his wife notice anything wrong? Is this a job for Drano or a pair of hedge-clippers?

    Mitla’s situation can only mean one thing: We are in the world of Stephen King’s imagination. This 1994 collection of King’s shorter works is his most diverse ever, and while some, like the above story, “The Moving Finger,” deliver King’s typically creepy chills, there is also a Sherlock Holmes mystery, a poem, a journalistic account of his son’s Little League team, even a religious parable. Not everything is terrific, but nearly everything works at least a little, and several approach the level of King’s best writing.

    My favorite is “Dedication,” a very unsettling story about a woman’s devotion to her son’s literary success that shows both King the gutsy gross-out artist and weaver of gripping yarns. Even if it isn’t exactly frightening, it is truly unnerving in the vein of “The Shining” and “The Dead Zone” and has one of King’s best-ever endings, both clever and sympathetic.

    Speaking of “The Dead Zone,” the obnoxious supermarket tabloid reporter from that book, Richard Dees, is back on the job chasing a vampire who flies with the aid of a Cessna Skymaster, knocking off the staffs of backwater airports in “The Night Flier,” a King tale in the classic macabre mold. My favorite of these spookier stories is “Chattery Teeth,” about the closest thing to “Evil Dead 2″ in short-story form. King often tries to be funny in his writing, but he is seldom as successful at it as he is here.

    A couple of stories (“It Grows On You”, “Sneakers”) begin well before petering out. Others, like “Umney’s Last Case” and “Dolan’s Cadillac,” take too long to get started but reward the patient reader, at least somewhat. I can’t think of but one or two stories here that were utterly lame, except maybe “My Pretty Pony,” a story about aging, and “You Know They Got A Hell Of A Band” which telegraphs its punches from a mile away.

    But the others are good reads, even the Little League article, “Head Down,” which manages to be something more than the product of an indulgent father who happens to be a talented writer. There’s a neat Elmore Leonard pastiche, “The Fifth Quarter,” along with apparent nods to H.P. Lovecraft (“Crouch End”), Roald Dahl (“The House On Maple Street”) and Raymond Chandler (“Umney’s Last Case”).

    The best of these is a Ray Bradbury-like story called “Suffer The Little Children” about a schoolteacher who doles out more than detentions to her young charges. I thought the Sherlock Holmes story, “The Doctor’s Case,” was a nice try, though I can’t picture Watson and Holmes discoursing about “ponces” the way they do here.

    Some readers may find this less satisfying than other King short-story collections, particularly his first, “Night Shift.” But “Night Shift” had a couple of clunkers, too, and if “Nightmares & Dreamscapes” fails at times, it does so for the sake of King advancing his craft. And if you find stories like “The Ten O’Clock People” and “Rainy Season” to be anything less than classic King shorts like “The Mangler” and “Quitters, Inc.,” you are kidding yourself more than a little bit.

  • Frank Johnson
    22:48 on June 1st, 2013
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    This collection of stories has it both: it can be utterly boring, and this is true for most of the stories. But there are also very good stories in it. It is significant, though, that the best piece of writing is not fictitious. It is the report of a Little League baseball season, when the author accompanies his 12-year-old son and his team in the local championships. King shows a great feeling for baseball here, and the story is a must for every genuine fan. On the whole the anthology could be a little bit slimmer.

  • Henderson A. Felix
    23:25 on June 1st, 2013
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    First and foremost, I’m an avid King fan with every book in hardcover splendor but Everything’s Eventual is filled with only 2 stories that I consider up to the maximum King “Chill Factor”.

    Upon completion of many of the stories, I was left with a “that’s all?” question on my lips and feeling as if the story came up short of the normal vivid terror, angst, and surprise factor so prevalent in his works.

    I can’t quite put my finger on it, and I would still encourage the purchase of this particular volume, but the stories included within did not stack up against a classic such as Nightmares and Dreamscapes.

    Just wanted to be honest with the review and hoping that the King short story magic returns with a future volume.

  • Zifnabk
    0:23 on June 2nd, 2013
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    What can be said about the “master of horror” that hasn’t been said a hundred times before in a hundred different ways? With “Everything’s Eventual”, Stephen King adds another masterpiece to his considerable repertoire. Like a long sought-after “B-sides” collection of music, these short stories shine with brilliance, each in their own way. While most have been available in other formats, “…Eventual” collects them all together between two covers for your trip down surreality lane.

    Since King has announced his imminent retirement in the writing world, “Everything’s Eventual” would serve as a fitting epitaph for a fabulous career of scaring the pants off people. Add this one to that shelf you have that holds nothing but King novels…it’s well worth it!

  • Bhangra Monkey
    2:26 on June 2nd, 2013
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    I went though most of high school hooked on Stephen King’s stuff. While the novels were usually the best stuff, some of his really horrifying moments were in the short story collections.

    But this isn’t exactly one of them. Take “Luckey Quarter”, for example. It’s nothing but a cheat-the-reader dream sequence that holds no suspense.

    Don’t get me wrong, some of the stories are really stand outs, like “1408″ a story about a hotel room that has similarities to “The Shining.” There’s also a short entitled “The Road Virus Heads North” that has such imagery that it kept me up late.

    But the work lacks in suspense and horror like King’s other shorts (see Nightmares and Dreamscapes if you haven’t already it’s much better than this work). King also inserts his little editorial comments before each story, to give budding writers an idea of what he was thinking. Unfortunately, these little nuggets sometimes have spoiler information; and generally he has nothing particularly interesting to say. (e.g. “This is my take on the classic . . .” or “I got the idea for this story…”).

    This book is really for King fans who’ve read all of his other works. If you haven’t read the classics, read those first, then read this book – otherwise you’ll never know how good King really is.

  • Impressive
    4:04 on June 2nd, 2013
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    This is the first Stephen King book I actually had a hard time not putting down. This book is a mix of good and bad, but the good doesn’t seem strong enough to carry the burgeoning weight of the bad stories. Get this one if you like SK’s short stories (frankly, I’m not wild about them, I think King excels at the longer tales).

  • Jimmy Foster
    4:16 on June 2nd, 2013
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    Everyone has read a few King books and seen a few of his movies. Nobody who reads his work at this point can say that they were surprised that his skill doesn’t match his popularity, or complain that he’s a middlebrow writer with a great sense of fantasy but little lasting literary value. No, he doesn’t show us anything new, or teach us anything profound, or look at anything in a new and insightful way. What he does is turn out hundreds of pages of horror stories every year. That’s not a bad thing. He’s a busy writer who keeps his fans happy. He turns out a pretty good horror story, and this anthology of short stories from across his long career is a nice one to have on the bedside table. Enjoy it for what it is, and you’ll have a lot of fun.

  • wonputz
    5:15 on June 2nd, 2013
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    Everything’s eventual is an enjoyable piece of work by Stephen King. This collection includes both horror stories and prose. King never fails to set the scene. His detail and descriptions allow me to visualize the setting more fully than if I were watching it on screen. Even in stories that are only a few pages (20-40), he creates personalities for his characters. I have come to enjoy how King creates characters by showing their thoughts and using their speech, rather than relying on simple descriptions.
    His imagination is magnificent. The Road Virus Rides North and 1408 were two of my favorites from this collection. These stories spooked me a little, but I couldn’t put the book down. I also enjoyed the suspense in, In the Deathroom. One of the most interesting proses was the Death of Jack Hamilton, a cohort of John Dillinger. Not all of the stories are horror, but they are all good. I recommend this collection to anyone who likes King.

  • Toby Hardwick
    6:42 on June 2nd, 2013
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    King has written some great short stories, including those in Night Shift, Skeleton Crew, and Everything’s Eventual, but this might be tops on the list. Some of these stories stick with you long after reading them, and TNT did some justice by turning some of these into one hour movies.

    It would be hard to say that I have a favorite, but here is a list of what I really liked, ranked on a scale of one to ten:

    * Dolan’s Cadillac 8.9 overall. Great story about revenge and dedication to getting back at the person who killed your wife.

    * Chattery Teeth: 9.2 An awesome twist at the end that should have been predictable but somehow wasn’t. A gripping tale.

    * End of the Whole Mess: 8.0 Imagine coming out with water that warps everyone’s brain’s and causes Alzheimer’s across the world?

    * Moving Finger: 9.5 Might be the scariest tale in this collection. You may be looking over your back next time you urinate.

    * You Know They got a Hell of a Band: 8.9 A story that is both funny and scary. You’ll never think of Buddy Holly, Elvis, and the rest of the famous rock stars the same way again.

    * The House on Maple’s Street: 9.5 Another scary tale that is a great read and possibly will scare you even after it’s all over.

    * Crouch End: 7.7 Not one of my favorites, but still pretty wild. Imagine a town that causes people to slip into different dimensions?

    * The Ten O’clock People: 8.4 Think twice next time you have your morning cigarette on your break.

    * Rainy Season: 8.5 A spooky tale that makes you churn when reading. Wait ’till it starts “raining.”

    * Umney’s Last Case: 8.7 Imagine going from the 1930′s to the present … now imagine developing a character who becomes real and takes over your life.

    * The Fifth Quarter: 8.7 The real question is, after reading the story: would you do the same thing? I know I might.

    I might be missing a couple other good ones but I don’t think there were any real duds. If you like short stories that are mind boggling, scary, and has a lot of twists, you will really enjoy Nightmares & Dreamscapes.

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