Roused by a single drop of blood, Rosie Daniels wakes up to the chilling realisation that her husband is going to kill her. And she takes flight - with his credit card.
Alone in a strange city, Rosie begins to build a new life: she meets Bill Steiner and she finds an odd junk shop painting, Rose Madder, which strangely seems to want her as much as she wants it.
But it's hard for Rosie not to keep looking over her shoulder. Rose-maddened and on the rampage, Norman is a corrupt cop with a dog's instinct for tracking people. And he's getting close. Rosie can feel how close he is getting....
A brilliant, dark-hued fable of gender wars, a haunting love story, and a hold-your-breath triumph of suspense, Rose Madder is Stephen King at his electrifying best.
©1995 Stephen King (P)2011 Penguin Audio USA
I wasn't sure about this book when I saw it in the listings as the subject matter didn't really appeal to me. However I've only actively disliked one of Stephen King's books and I noticed that he was also one of the narrators for this edition so I decided to take the plunge with this month's credit.
It's one of the faster times I've got through a longer audio book and I listen to a lot of them. The story line didn't (and doesn't in hindsight) seem to be that fascinating or convincing to me but obivously it was as I've had to come back for another book and I'm not due another credit for ages!
It was also extremely well read which is as important (if not more so) that the actual book. I've had some great books from Audible which I've given up on after an hour or so as the narrator was so irritating (either too 'flat' or to excitable)that I couldn't focus on the story. I've had others (such as the first 5 books in Terry Brooks - Landover series) where the narration has made the story alive for me. This is one of the latter. With a great combination from the two readers effectively splitting the two 'sides' of the book.
I quite like this book- Stephen King has done a lot worse!!!. Good characters, vivid descriptions that made me feel slightly raw if I'm honest. The end is a bit of a damp squib - but I'd recommend it.
This must rank as one of Stephen King's most inept novels. Any credit he might have got for dealing frankly with the social cancer of domestic abuse is forfeited by the gratuitously lurid and voyeuristic way in which he handles it.
The composition of the novel is lazy, self-conscious and full of loose ends.
By putting constant racist, sexist and homophobic abuse in the mouth of the dysfunctional husband, King does not help tackle prejudice - he simply offers bigoted people a crash-course in expanding their vocabulary of hate.
The novel itself must be a dire read, but the audiobook makes it worse. The female reader is skilled and resourceful, but she has been wrongly partnered with this book. Her style would be better suited to sappy romances, and since part of this story is written as a sappy romance she was probably cast for precisely that reason, but the average horror reader may find the effect (as I did) cloying to say the least. But she is unquestionably an excellent narrator, unlike Stephen King himself who expressionlessly drones through and crushes the life out of several lengthy sections where the action is seen through the eyes of the pursuing male character.
The final straw is the mixture of tinkly or discordant sounds - which reminded me of a 7 year old let loose on a cheap synth - that swells up over the narrator's voice from time to time, and which the producer evidently thought added atmosphere.
There are some good turns of phrase and some chilling moments, but I am used to better novels from King, and (with all respect for the reader on this recording) better matching of voice to subject matter.
I liked the fact that Stephen King read the part of Norman Daniels
Most of the book is memorable as it's a step away from King's usual works
I liked the first dream scene, the first time into the painting, up until that point the book feels like a regular thriller
The opening to the book was very moving, and sad.
Although I enjoyed this audiobook, I do wish they hadn't put music in it. The music is dull and often so loud that you can barely hear the narrator
Rose Madder is a great story, well written and very interesting. Having Stephen King read the part of Norman made it even more interesting. I really enjoyed this recording
I absolutely loved the way Blair Brown read this. I will be looking for more audio books that she has done. She brings Rosie (both of them) to life and you can really hear the other characters in the book. This has been the best reading of a book I've experienced so far.
I only listen to audiobooks when I'm commuting and as I spend a lot of time in the car, I try not to do too much driving when I'm off work. I found myself going for unnecessary drives on days off so I could hear a little more of the story. Loved it.
At the end of each chapter, there is a blast of music (mercifully short but quite discordant). It plays over the last few lines of text. Occasionally, I found that they drowned out the reading - this was my only issue with this audiobook. I thoroughly recommend it.
I have never read a Stephen King book before this was an amazing start for me to discover such a good author .I will read more from him in future .this is a great book xxxread it if you can xxx
I have loved this book for years and the audio version is excellent. The only criticism I would make is the incidental music, added no doubt to prolong the suspense but I found it intrusive.
It's only my second, but by far the best one, i judge a book by how sad i am when it ends and at the moment i am feeling sad.
If i had the time i would.
I have read this book a few times as i love it , but this is the first time i have listened to it.
It has made my walk home from work a pleasure, i have gotten completely lost in the tale and Blair Brown and Stephen King have brought the book to life in a way i never knew was possible. I want to listen to it again already as i feel i will be "lost" not listening to it. I hope this review helps, i'm not very good at writing them but i'm just expressing how it makes me feel.
I loved the story and recommend it to all fans of King and stories that have a female lead. My only (very small) criticism is the music that played through the end of chapters. This is the first audio book I've had that does this.
"Loved the audio version"
Yes - it was great. It is one of my favourite Stephen King novels
The only let down is the random music, which, like I said, was random, and it was at times louder than the narrators.... could definitely have done without.
"A Non-Stop Listen"
This is one of the most exciting books by Stephen King I've listened to. The funny thing is that I've never read it or seen it anywhere until I discovered it here on Audible. It's very fast paced and kept me listening far longer than intended with each sitting. The fast pace didn't keep me from feeling invested in the lives of his characters, either. Stephen King is a character writer as much as he is a storyteller, and this was one heck of a story.
The basic storyline, woman fleeing from abusive cop husband, has been done before by others, but never quite in this way. I have no idea how to categorize this book - it's not so much horror, aside from the horrific elements stemming from madness. Paranormal thriller, psychological drama, and even romance, all blend effortlessly into this modern day tale.
I really enjoyed the back and forth of Stephen King and Blair Brown in the narration. (don't worry, it's back and forth in chapters, not dialogue) King does an excellent job for his part - so much so that I wish he would consider narrating more of his works.I loved his voices, especially that of "Ze Bull". ;) Blair is the perfect counterpoint for the female lead's point of view, and the switching back and forth between them comes naturally without any hesitation in the flow of the story.
I would recomment this to any Stephen King fan or any fan of thrillers of all kinds. Not for the squeamish.
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