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  • Later

  • Written by: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Seth Numrich
  • Length: 6 hrs and 32 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (581 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

2022 MYSTERY AUDIE AWARD WINNER!

A BRAND-NEW NOVEL FROM LEGENDARY STORYTELLER STEPHEN KING!

SOMETIMES GROWING UP MEANS FACING YOUR DEMONS.

The son of a struggling single mother, Jamie Conklin just wants an ordinary childhood. But Jamie is no ordinary child. Born with an unnatural ability his mom urges him to keep secret, Jamie can see what no one else can see and learn what no one else can learn. But the cost of using this ability is higher than Jamie can imagine—as he discovers when an NYPD detective draws him into the pursuit of a killer who has threatened to strike from beyond the grave.

Later is Stephen King at his finest, a terrifying and touching story of innocence lost and the trials that test our sense of right and wrong. With echoes of King’s classic novel, It, Later is a powerful, haunting, unforgettable exploration of what it takes to stand up to evil in all the faces it wears.

©2021 Stephen King (P)2021 Simon & Schuster Audio

What the critics say

"Seth Numrich portrays Jamie Conklin, a young man who sees dead people and can compel them to answer questions truthfully. As a child, Jamie is able to help his mother, Tia, avoid financial ruin. But then Tia's girlfriend, an NYPD detective, asks him to force a dead man to reveal the location of a hidden bomb. This unleashes sinister forces that stalk Jamie for years. As the 20-something Jamie remembers these traumatic supernatural events, Numrich sounds appropriately melancholic and haunted. But he also illuminates moments of levity and warmth, mostly in Jamie's musings about growing up and in his relationship with his mother. King's words and Numrich's performance reinforce the idea that kindness can still shine in a world full of horrors." (AudioFile Magazine)

"Voicing Jamie is Seth Numrich, who brings all his classical theater training to what could have been the throwaway role of a kid who mostly tries to ignore an ability he didn’t ask for. Numrich, who played Benjamin Tallmadge in four seasons of AMC’s 'Turn: Washington’s Spies,' embodies Jamie from ebullient first-grader to terrified but determined teen, nailing the evolution of a boy trying to solve his own mystery. The story can be whimsical and funny, thoughtful and alarming, and Numrich is perfectly in step." (St. Louis Post-Dispatch

What listeners say about Later

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  • Overall
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    4 out of 5 stars

Entertaining listen.

'Later' is an entertaining listen although it is by no means a horror novel. Yes it includes a supernatural element but certainly not one that brings the spine-tingling shivers reflected in Stephen King's earlier works. It is more of a suspense novel with an interesting storyline, strong characters and a sprinkling of humour... and the narration is excellent. I suspect that 'Later' is the first book in a series (unless Stephen King as stuck us with another of his unsatisfactory endings) written with a big or small screeen movie in mind. Anyway, it is worth a credit.

7 people found this helpful

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Lighter Fare

I have read most of what SK has written that has been published for the masses. now I'm listening instead of reading! I like this, but it was a light read. Like a light lunch in the afternoon instead of a heavy rich dinner in the evening- comparably, IT and The Stand. was a good break waiting for my credits to top up!

4 people found this helpful

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Kind of Pointless

The characterization was ok, but there was no plot. There didn't really seem to be any point for this story to exist. The "scary" parts weren't scary, the challenges faced by the narrator were pretty limp, and the "twist" at the end was just pointless and out of place. This basically has enough material for a filler short story in a long book of short stories, but for some reason it's been stretched out to over 6 hours to turn it into a short novel, and it just doesn't work. I don't necessarily need an action-packed plot if there are enough interesting things going on in the narrator's head, but in this case there's really just nothing. At least the voice of the novel seemed authentic, which I can't say for the last few SK novels, which were not only forgettable but just "off" in style and voice from his earlier books.

4 people found this helpful

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pretty good

Not quite the story I was expecting, but it was alright. It's a bit of a weird length for a King novel, too long to be a novella, too short to be his standard doorstop, but it worked out... ok? It's weird, it felt like it could have been either and it still would have worked. It could have been fleshed out (and maybe should have been?) but the concept could have worked as a short story, even. So I don't know. The more I think about it, the less satisfying I think it was?
When you pick up a Stephen King, you pretty much know what you're going to get. Specific pop culture references as well as reference to writing, some intertextuality, a few gross bits, some awkward sexual content, a certain amount if bildungsroman, and, of course, vague extradimensional beings. And usually an ending that doesn't quite satisfy. Consider all boxes ticked, here.
It was fine. The protagonist was a relatable everyman (every kid?) character. The story was interesting enough. But in the end, it felt insubstantial and like it was missing something.

2 people found this helpful

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Great book.

Almost like a short story. Not as deep as his other novels. But Good overall

2 people found this helpful

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another great king book

loved it! I have been reading King since I was a teenager and have only been disappointed once by his writing. This was NOT that time..great story.

1 person found this helpful

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Great narration, pacing a little off

Another good story from King. The narrator is perfect for this story and does a great job. Although I can understand if people wouldn't like it, but I felt it really added to the story. The very end is a little too weird and felt like an unnecessary "reveal". There are some pacing issues and I think it would have served beret to be a bit shorter and in a novella collection like "Different Seasons" or "If it Bleeds"

1 person found this helpful

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Excellent Story

This Audio Book is equally as well read as it is written. The storyline is entertaining, with believable and likeable qualities. King has mastered the art of story telling from his character's point of view.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

wnding?

what the hell Stephen King? The ending? what does it add to the story? Seems like a desperate grasp for a gotcha.

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Quite ridiculous and boring.

King has really gone downhill. I stewed over this book for better than a year. I kept it in the wish list and then decided to use a credit on it a week or so ago. I fully regret the decision.

it is predictable and lame like most of his recent novels. Plus, he showcases his political bias yet again. We get it King, you are a DEMOCRAT but to all but give high praise to a deranged Nancy Pelosi is absurd.

Your stuff is as I said and it is my opinion, Predictable and Lame.

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  • Victor @ theAudiobookBlog dot com
  • 2021-03-02

Another amazing story

Stephen King is one of the best authors in the world. He has written more than 100 books, short stories, and novellas in almost all genres out there. I experienced many of them as audiobooks and his latest novel, Later, was released yesterday, for the excitement of millions of his fans around the world.

The king of horror, thrillers and suspense, the best-selling and award winning author Stephen King, delivers another amazing story featuring a young boy who can see communicate with people just after they die, and his life gets stranger with every year as he grows older. Combining in his unique, flowing and mesmerizing writing style mystery with thriller and adding a touch of horror, this celebrated author continues to shock and delight his fans.

Renowned actor Seth Numrich does a fantastic job with the narration for Later. He perfectly captures the emotions and drama that our young hero is living. Switching seamlessly between characters, assigning each of them different voices, accents and personalities, he grabs the listener by the throat from the first disjointed phrase and doesn't let go until the very end.

This was the first time for me listening to him, and his first time performing a Stephen King book, but in my humble opinion, he acquitted himself exemplary.

Later is pure Stephen King, original, gripping, entertaining, scary and so captivating!

142 people found this helpful

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  • TuxedoedCorgi95
  • 2021-03-02

Narrator makes it!

Of course Stephen King's newest book is wonderful! But the narrator really sells it. He's phenomenal!

95 people found this helpful

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  • A.C.
  • 2021-03-03

excellent until the end.

I really enjoyed this book. In fact I listened to it straight through. But the little detail (no spoilers) that is literally thrown in at the very end, after all the story lines have come to their conclusion, is totally unnecessary. It adds nothing to the story. It's mentioned (and it's a pretty big deal) and then the book ends. It was so out of place I'm really left wondering WHY. Maybe King felt the book wasn't taboo enough and he needed to throw in a shocker at the end. It had the opposite effect for me.

72 people found this helpful

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  • lonesomdov99
  • 2021-03-03

All excellent writing w/o politics forced on us.

Best Stephen King he's written in a while. Kept me interested so I finished in one night. Love the references to "IT" which is my favorite King novel. Rather short so perhaps a sequel?

62 people found this helpful

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  • Jimbo Slice
  • 2021-03-02

Not a typical King Novel

What happened to those novels that started as repetitive dreams? That turned from years of torment in night terrors into a 1000 page behemoth decades later? The Stand, It, Carry, Under the Dome. I bought it and Im giving it a listen, but I want those stories that take me deep into a different reality, not a 6.5 hour flash.

55 people found this helpful

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  • Katarzyna Zuza Zasada
  • 2021-03-07

Bad. Really, bad.

With all the loose strings, I can't help but think this is a "set up" for a series of books. Which, if you like the story, is not necessarily a bad thing. I, however, did not like the story and found it weak and predictable. I keep buying King's books hoping that he will eventually write another that was worth reading. That hasn't happened. So, I think I will give up the hope that it will and save my money.

51 people found this helpful

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  • Carol Calvert
  • 2021-03-03

Couldn’t Put It Down!

“Later” is a page turner with King’s usual ability to make you suspend disbelief. Of course Jamie can see dead people! Fast moving plot, great character development, and terrific narration by Seth Numrich!

42 people found this helpful

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  • Justin Sloan
  • 2021-03-04

Not scary in the least

Narrator kept saying this was a horror story but there was nothing scary or suspenseful at all. Mediocre.

35 people found this helpful

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  • Collin Daniels
  • 2021-03-03

Plain good

A bright and brilliant story, full of Mr. King's trademarks. His clever, suspenseful storytelling style and signature wit drip from every word, while Seth Numrich nails the performance. I had forgotten that I'd pre-ordered this and listened in one afternoon. I'm reminded once again why this man has been my favorite author since I was a kid sneaking scary stories home from the library.

30 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-03-03

Great Book!

It was a Great Book! Just sad it's over. Narrator was also perfect for the story. Def worth the credit, but Stephen King always is.

22 people found this helpful

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  • Riky
  • 2021-12-17

Great novel

I like SK very much. Another great book. The narration is also fine. Recommended much.