Regular price: £24.99

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – choose any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • Free, unlimited access to Audio Shows
  • After your trial, Audible is just £7.99/month
  • Get access to the Member Daily Deal
OR
In Basket

Summary

You'll lose a lot of sleep.... Ralph does. At first he starts waking up earlier. And earlier. Then the hallucinations start - the colours, shapes and strange auras. Not to mention the bald doctors who always turn up at the scene of a death.

That's when Ralph begins to lose a lot more than sleep. When he begins to understand why his hitherto mild-mannered friend, Ed, is getting out of control - dangerously so. And why his hometown is about to become the new Armageddon....

©1994 Stephen King (P)1994 Penguin Highbridge

What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    170
  • 4 Stars
    95
  • 3 Stars
    71
  • 2 Stars
    21
  • 1 Stars
    11

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    194
  • 4 Stars
    80
  • 3 Stars
    35
  • 2 Stars
    15
  • 1 Stars
    14

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    209
  • 4 Stars
    81
  • 3 Stars
    37
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    6
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Annoying music!

Thoroughly enjoyed the story, but the music at start and end of each chapter was jarring and too loud; it drowned out the reader!

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Good but be warned...

The story is great and Eli Wallach performance is good, but Audible seem to have managed to re-create everything that is bad about cheesy Stephen King film adaptions.

I never usually write reviews but I was so annoyed by the music that was added to this book. It seems like they have managed to find a deaf - mute chimp and asked him to write the music.

On reflection, I think that is being too kind.

The music is terrible and whoever decided to add it to the narration should be wiped off the face of the earth.

Apart from that minor problem the book is great.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A great story, ruined by discordant instrumentals.

Would you try another book written by Stephen King or narrated by Eli Wallach?

Definitely written by Stephen King, I have almost all his books in hard copy as well as audible and e books.

How could the performance have been better?

I think Will Patton or Kate Mulgrew would have been a better choice as narrator, they adapt their voices well for the characters.

Do you think Insomnia needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

Follow up books can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on how they are written, just as with films.

Any additional comments?

The awful instrumentals laced throughout this book ruined it for me. I have read it in hard copy and was really looking forward to listening while driving or doing housework. I can't express how disappointed I was that a good story was ruined so badly by that strident "music"

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A great story

A good story read brilliantly by Eli Wallach who was unfortunately drowned out occasionally by completely unnecessary, ghastly, discordant music. Please, please don't put that horrible row into any more books.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Would have given 5 ⭐️ but....

Loved this story and the performance was amazing BUT at times I had to turn it up so loud because the narrators voice seems to meld into the same sound and words were quite indistinguishable.. don't get me wrong.. a great narrative but just trying to hear individual words if you had any kind of noise in the background was difficult.. loved it but could do with a different narrator..

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Music Spoils the Book

What did you like best about Insomnia? What did you like least?

Music during the chapters drowned the narration and was pointless. A shame.

If you’ve listened to books by Stephen King before, how does this one compare?

Had to give up because of the music intervention.

What didn’t you like about Eli Wallach’s performance?

Eli was fab, music drowned him out.

Did Insomnia inspire you to do anything?

Write a petition not to use music on audiobooks.

Any additional comments?

I hope this is not a new trend, as i will not be buying. Returned.

13 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great story, great reading - dreadful music

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

It's a lengthy and enjoyable reading which in my opinion makes this purchase money well spent

What was one of the most memorable moments of Insomnia?

Sadly the memorable moments are the most frustrating (see comments below).

Which scene did you most enjoy?

When a certain character got his comeuppance.

Could you see Insomnia being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

Definitely, as with a gazillion other Stephen King books. All the actors that spring to mind for Ralph are too old (or dead) - Jimmy Stewart would have been super.

Any additional comments?

Insomnia is a favourite of mine and I've read it a couple of times. Finding it here and read by Eli Wallach - a 'proper' Hollywood actor of a classic era - made its purchase a no brainer. And it's just as enjoyable to listen to as to read ... except for the incredibly intrusive incidental music that cruelly punctuates the reading at far too frequent and inopportune moments. It's discordant and unnecessarily loud and it's driving me up the wall. And yes, I realise that's the point - the lead character is functioning on increasingly fewer and fewer hours' sleep, the music is no doubt meant to mirror his frazzled nerves - but whoever thought this ear drum-jangling cacophony was a good idea and would compliment the actor's reading - it damn well doesn't!

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

king

good book well read let down only by the music. so annoying when your trying to listen to the story to have that irritating little off tune fading in over the narration at the end of each chapter

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • E
  • 25-09-16

insomnia

A good story performed brilliantly but spoiled by horrendous loud 'music' so poorly mixed that it drowned out the narration. volume had to be continually turned up and down.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Stephen King Insomnia

Read wonderfully by Eli Wallach, for me he gives the character of Ralph Roberts his heart and soul. I was keen to check in each day to find out the mysteries that Ralph discovers regrading the little bald doctors and there midnight forays around the comunity. Also what is Ed Depneau's obsession with the eponimous Crimson King and his total rage over Susan Day's visit regarding pro choice for women.
At the heart of the story is Ralph friendships and his coming to terms with his insomnia and new abilities which lead him ever closer each night to the envitable confrontation with the scissor wielding creatures and there true intentions.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Linda Thackeray
  • 26-06-17

Great story and narration. God awful music.

Great story, rivetting. Eli Wallach's voice is a joy to listen to. The only thing was the music, it was terrible and inappropriate. Marred an otherwise excellent read of a great book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Richard
  • 08-08-16

Too much music

What three words best describe Eli Wallach’s voice?

Talented voice artist and very easy to listen to.

Any additional comments?

There is terrible music all through the performance. I assume it is between chapters. It is distracting, detracts from the performance and ruins it. It is also far too loud for the voice of Eli Wallach to be heard clearly. There should be a warning that there is music introduced to the book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Alex
  • 01-09-18

music is a bit overpowering

Good story, a bit slow but with a good ending, classic Stephen King type of novel. Eli Wallach's narration is very good too but the underlying music can be really disruptive and overpowers the narration at times.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • RieksB
  • 21-07-18

Joyful

This is one of my favorite Stephen King books. The only thing that annoyed the crap out of me was the awful, screeching music

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • reg mountford
  • 10-03-17

brilliant

really gripoing all the way through the kind of book i could listen to again