1992 Stephen King – Gerald’s Game Audiobook read by Lindsay Crouse
By 1992, Stephen King was getting slippery. Following his publishers spent a great deal of time and money reassuring readers that Stephen King was, indeed, “The Master of Horror” with Four Past Midnight and Needful Things, King turned the script and delivered two audio novels in 1992 that were about women. Not only women, but women who did not do anything particularly horrifying.
Gerald’s Game and Dolores Claiborne (November, 1992) were all about the development of feminist consciousness, the crimes of the patriarchy, incest, and domestic abuse. That’s a far cry from possessed cars, rabid dogs, and daddies with roque mallets chasing down their kids hotel hallways. Stephen King – Gerald’s Game Audiobook. But despite their aspirations, both audio books stand as a testament to that which might happen to be if King had only been a tiny bit more ambitious.
If he’d just reached a little farther, these two sound books might have been his masterpiece. It’s just kind of lying about. They do not have children, and while their union appears fine, there aren’t lots of fireworks. Gerald’s been attempting to spice up things in the bedroom by handcuffing Jessie into the bed and having sexual intercourse with her while she pretends to be helpless. Stephen King – Gerald’s Game Audiobook Free. She goes along with this, how she moves along with just about everything else in their marriage, with a sort of halfhearted tolerance. The audio publication opens with the two of them in their remote lake house by Lake Kashwakamak, Jessie in her panties, arms handcuffed to the headboard, deciding that she’s changed her mind and does not wish to play Gerald’s game. He decides to rape her anyways, she kicks him in the balls, he has a massive heart attack, and dies.
Having stood up for herself and gotten nothing but a lifeless husband for her attempts, Jessie’s in a tight place. The audio book unfolds over the next two times as she battle thirst, hallucinations, and worse in her attempts to escape from his handcuffs. Thrown into the mix are Prince, a stray puppy starving to death after being abandoned in the nearby woods, who comes into the house to munch on her husband’s corpse, and “The Space Cowboy”, a mysterious, malformed guy who looks in the moonlight at the corner of her room at night who may or might not be a necrophiliac, cannibal corpse mutilator. Or he may just be a hallucination. Ultimately, Jessie flows through a dreadful bit of self-mutilation that’s known in medical circles as a “de-gloving” and she makes it to security.
Gerald’s Game Stephen KingAccompanying her imprisonment are a chorus of voices inside her head: a good girl, a therapist, and the voice of a university friend, Ruth, who have become her fan when Jessie was more self-actualized. Stephen King Gerald’s Game Audiobook Download. They torment and assist Jessie in equal part, placing her on trial for being nothing more than an accessory to her husband. In the span of their inner monologue, Jessie is hauled back into the memories of a 1963 solar eclipse when her father sexually molested her. It’s simply by addressing this memory of her victimization as a ten-year-old that she finds the power to de-glove what needs to be de-gloved and escape handcuffs as a grownup.
Gerald’s Game is the logical conclusion of King’s obsession with restricted places. The Shining saw three people trapped in a resort. Cujo had two people trapped in a Pinto. Misery had two people trapped in a small property. And now Gerald’s Game features one woman trapped in a room. It spent nine weeks at #1 on the New York Times hardcover bestseller list, but only made it to #5 on the softcover bestseller list, one of King’s few audio books not to hit the top of the two graphs. King himself confessed that this was a Really diffferent audio novel for him to write in a USA Today interview, stating:
Once I compose, I want to scare people, but there is a certain comfort level for your reader since you are conscious constantly that it is make-believe. Gerald’s Game Audiobook Free. Vampires, the supernatural and But these last two audio books [Dolores Claiborne and Gerald’s Game] take people out of the security zone and that, in a way, is even scarier.
But for most people the scariest thing about this audio book was that it was written by Stephen King. The New York Times review summed up All of the critical hand-wringing best, fretting itself into a breathless swoon:
Can Stephen King take on those heavy themes to show that he is a true Writer, not just a horror author? Was he attempting to change from writing good bad books to writing good good novels, and wound up with a poor good book? The two genres cancel each other out: the horror makes us distrust the serious theme, and the serious theme stops us from suspending our disbelief to savor the horror.
Eek! There is a horror author in our Serious Themes home!
Gerald’s Game Stephen KingEntertainment Weekly was a lot more succinct, accusing King of ruining a good story with “stick-on feminism” and they have a stage as there is a certain paint-by-numbers facet to Jesssie’s psychological liberation. Stephen King – Gerald’s Game Audiobook Stephen King. At precisely the exact same time, the sound book is a fun and necessary (if somewhat primitive) answer to some kind of sex positivism that at times threatens to become a cudgel, finds its most conservative expression in Fifty Shades of Grey. In both Fifty Shades and Gerald’s Game, feminine personalities find liberation in S&M, but whereas Anastasia Steele finds liberation in rejecting her past and getting submissive to a man whom she ultimately marries, Jessie Burlingame finds liberation in rejecting her spouse’s domineering S&M pursuits, getting out of her marriage, and reclaiming her beyond. It’s a much more genuinely liberating message, although King can move a little over-the-top occasionally, as when Jessie asserts that men are “cursed” with a penis, like packs of were-penises roamed the territory under the full moon, biting men and shifting them in to were-dicks.
Some readers might be switched away by King’s on-the-nose indictment of our patriarchal society, but Gerald’s Game has other benefits, such as what might be the most sustained scenes of terror King has ever written. Gerald’s Game Audiobook Free. Beginning with a succession informed from Prince’s point-of-view (reinforcing the idea that King might be one of America’s amazing dog POV authors, see The Stand, Cujo), then moving into the hallucinatory first look by the Space Cowboy, followed by Jessie’s de-gloving and escape, King turns in 200 pages whose intensity could be hard to rival, by King or anyone else. Unfortunately, it’s a 420 page audio book.
Gerald’s Game Stephen KingUltimately, what lessens the status of this audio book to B-list King is not too much ambition, but also small. A desire to compose something bigger, something deeper, something about a personality further eliminated from himself, these are the strengths of Gerald’s Game. But it’s King’s choice, made for reasons that are uncertain, to leave his less-lucrative but more ambitious strategy to print it as just one half In the Path of the Eclipse that undermines this audio book. As a novella, ” Gerald’s Game could have been all sleek meat using less introspective padding, and connecting it to Dolores Claiborne could have served to fortify it. Gerald’s Game Audiobook Free Download. Although the two sound books are linked by two brief psychic flashes exchanged between Jessie and Dolores (once in 1963, once in 1992), placing them between the same covers could have put their own contrasting elements in starker relief.
Dolores is poor, hard, and blue collar Jessie is still rich, soft, and a kept woman. Both of them have to dig deep to find the power they need to escape their misuse (sexual and domestic). Both of them are battered by men, and judged in the court of public opinion, and the two of them earn qualified triumphs. In both sound books, King gives us an array of bad guys–the Space Cowboy, Gerald, Gerald’s law company which worries about its public image, Dolores’s abusive husband, the city fathers of Little Tall Island who estimate what Dolores does to protect her kids and standing contrary to this gallery of patriarchal thugs is a great fellowship of girls reaching from Dolores back to her older boss Vera, also forward to Jessie, and even extending into the unseen Ruth who attempted to assist her college buddy, and was rebuffed for her efforts. It’s an unofficial legion of women who look out for each other, protect each other, and discuss their strength in times of crisis. They stand together, as their only other option is to die separately. Stephen King – Gerald’s Game Audiobook. Split into two songs books, it’s a weaker story, but it’s still possible to see traces of that which might happen to be King’s great epic about the lives of women lingering on the webpage.