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Different Seasons

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4.35  ·  Rating details ·  168,263 ratings  ·  4,333 reviews
From the Magical Pen of Stephen King, Four Mesmerizing Novellas…

“Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption”

An unjustly imprisoned convict seeks a strange and startling revenge…the basis for the Best Picture Academy Award nominee The Shawshank Redemption.

“Apt Pupil”

Todd Bowden is one of the top students in his high school class and a typical American sixteen-year-old—until
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Paperback, First Signet Printing, 508 pages
Published January 31st 1983 by Signet (first published August 27th 1982)
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Freyja Vanadis When I was in junior high and high school, I would have read this book but it would have had to be without my parents' knowledge. It's not appropriate…moreWhen I was in junior high and high school, I would have read this book but it would have had to be without my parents' knowledge. It's not appropriate for junior high kids, and just barely for high school kids. King writes for adults, not kids.(less)
Lauren No, you’re not the only one. I did read all of it but Apt Pupil was my least favorite of the 4. Reading about people wanting to hurt other people for …moreNo, you’re not the only one. I did read all of it but Apt Pupil was my least favorite of the 4. Reading about people wanting to hurt other people for whatever reason was not for me.(less)

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Matthew
January 2020 Re-Read update - original review still below

I have finished the next book in my chronological re-read of King's novels. I knew I was in for a treat because I have always fondly remembered this book as one of his best. It did not fail to disappoint the second time around.

In the afterward, King makes the point that this book was his first release to try and show that he was more than just a horror writer. I will say that this is true, but it does still have some horrific elements. So,
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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
I'm going to try and do this book justice..but I know it's not going to happen so do me a favor, if you have never picked this book up just stop what you are doing and run get it.

Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption:
This is perfection. At 101 pages Stephen King packed a story that stays with me forever. I've been a fan of the movie version since the first time I viewed it. I was so pissed when Forrest Gump beat it out as the Oscar winner for best picture that year. I raged..I've since cal
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Johann (jobis89)
May 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
"Fear can hold you prisoner. Hope can set you free."

Considered by many to be King's best collection of stories/novellas, Different Seasons contains two stories that were ultimately developed into two of the greatest movies of all-time: The Body, which became Stand by Me, of course, and Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption - the movie is obvious, no?

Sometimes I really hate reading an awesome Stephen King book... no, I'm not crazy. I just get stressed about where I'm going to rank it in my top b
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Carol
Well......WOW! These four LONG-short stories are ALL fabulous!

RITA HAYWORTH AND SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION - 5 Stars

"Get busy living or get busy dying."

Everyone has probably seen the movie adaptation or read the book by now and knows the story about the wrongful imprisonment of banker Andy Dufresne, the horror of "the sisters" and his best friend at Shawshank Red, but if you haven't, you are so fortunate to have this amazing read ahead of you.

The novel provides a bit more detail here and there

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Fabian
Sep 16, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one is closer to the MOST EXCELLENT side of the King spectrum (THE GREEN MILE, CARRIE and THE STAND come to mind) than the MEDIOCRE side (INSOMNIA, BAG OF BONES). Yeah, these tales are familiar: three of the four seasons have become immortalized on celluloid.

Not until the last Author's Note do his intentions and his themes finally converge. He wrote "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption", "Apt Pupil", "The Body" & "The Breathing Method" as unpublishable novellas right after the completio
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Ahmad Sharabiani
‎Different seasons, Stephen King

Different Seasons (1982) is a collection of four Stephen King novellas with a more serious dramatic bent than the horror fiction for which King is famous.

The four novellas are tied together via subtitles that relate to each of the four seasons.

The collection is notable for having had three of its four novellas turned into Hollywood films, one of which, The Shawshank Redemption, was nominated for the 1994 Academy Award for Best Picture.

Novellas: "Rita Hayworth an
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Andrew Smith
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
It's definitive, Stephen King is not just a writer of horror and fantasy. In truth, up to a few years ago I was convinced he was a horrormeister pure and simple. At this point a friend suggested I try out his time travel epic 11/22/63. I was cured. I loved it and subsequent forays into King’s extensive catalogue have shown me the range of the man’s work.

I’ll comment individually on the tales but the common element, the outstanding take-away for me is simply the realisation that here’s the evide
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Ginger
Oct 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
What a great compilation of short stories by Stephen King! FANTASTIC!!

I knew going into this book that I’ve seen movies for two of the stories. I thought, “Since I’ve seen the movies, do I need to read the actually book?”

And that’s a resounding YES. A big HELL YES!

1st story: Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption

I’m sure most of us have seen this movie at least once or 50 times in your life. The book is so well done. There were subtle differences in the book vs the movie but it wasn’t enough
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megs_bookrack
Jul 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was so happy to revisit this collection last year with a group of my friends from Bookstagram.



This is such a well-rounded collection, in my opinion, although The Body will always be my fave!

A chunky book but so worth the time.

In fact, this was my favorite collection for many years, only recently surpassed by Full Dark, No Stars!

I'm not sure why I didn't add it on here last year when we read it. I guess the underlying take away would be that I am a dumpster fire with arms most of the time.

Tak
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Glenn Sumi
Jun 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
I like waiting a few days before reviewing a book, just to see how it’s taken up residence in my mind and imagination. Some books stay with me clearly even months later; others start to fade as soon as I turn the final page (if not before).

Stephen King’s Different Seasons is a fascinating case, because I got to see how one story haunted me while I went on to the next.

Published in 1982, it was King's first book of non-genre fiction. He made his name writing horror (Carrie, ‘Salem’s Lot, The Shini
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Raeleen Lemay
Finished Sept 2017
I FINALLY FINISHED! I definitely think the last two novellas were easier to fly through than the first two (particularly Apt Pupil), but overall they were all just good. I enjoyed them, but I can't really rave about any of them. I also read the afterword that King wrote, and it was such a fun little tidbit that I think I want to read On Writing now because his insights about writing were so interesting!


original review from Aug 2016
I've only actually read the first two stories i
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Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Jun 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014

I’m not exactly a fan of Stephen King. I could say he is a victim of his own popularity: I’ve seen so many of the movie adaptations from his novels, I don’t feel the need to check out the book versions. And the first book of his that I’ve read almost 30 years ago is The Stand , which started with great storytelling and compelling characters and devolved later into self-indulgent filler and confusion. So, it’s been too long since I put him on the backburner, mislabelling him as a commercial hack
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Joe Valdez
Best book by Stephen King? That's a question I might answer differently from month to month, but for today, I've got Different Seasons. Published in 1982, the book consists of four novellas (each in the 25,000-35,000 word range), any of which might be considered one of King's better novels if expanded and published separately. You might have heard of a couple of these:

Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption (Hope Springs Eternal) chronicles the internment of Andy Dufrense, a banker sentenced
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Dannii Elle
Apr 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Actual rating 4.5/5 stars.

This is a collection of four novellas, centring around disparate topics but all interlinked by the slow, creeping dread that emanated from each. None were wet-your-pants type horrifying, but focused instead on the everyday emotions of living.

Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption - 4.5/5 stars
King's ability to create character is just astounding, as proven in this short piece of perfection. I was immediately transported to the characters' location, incarcerated in
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Julie
I have an omnivore's appetite when it comes to books. I'll consume any genre, as long as the writing knocks me out. But, if you ask me what I avoid, I will tell you: horror.

I'm a Jane Austen devotee, not a lover of Carrie, Cujo or Christine. I find the gray hair creeping into my bangs horrific enough; I never want to be more scared.

So, now you know you can trust me when I tell you how fabulous and fantastic this book is.

First off, if you're not familiar with this work, it is a collection of fo
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Fabian {Councillor}
Who said Stephen King only wrote horror? "Different Seasons" is a mix of all the genres - Young Adult, Mystery, coming-of-age ... but no horror. If you want to read King at his finest, then read this.

"Different Seasons" is a collection of four novellas, each of which he has written after the conclusion of his four earliest novels. While initially not intending to publish any of them, King finally decided to release those novellas in an anthology, and many of his readers couldn't be more thankful
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Maciek
Nov 22, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
This collection is one of King's finest efforts. While the author has his ups and downs, and the reception of his novels and short stories varies, the readers have suprisingly little criticism for his collection of novellas. It seems to be the field where he is at his best; it's the cozy inbetween the novel and the short story, a place where a tale can be developed without faltering into overbloated, verbose work, maintain a mood and keep the theme that would be otherwise impossible in short fic ...more
*TANYA*
Nov 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book many, many moons ago and it's still as good as I remembered it to be. This time around I listened to the audiobook. Frank Muller's voice is sublime, his narration is always on point.
Matt Tandy
Apr 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
By 1982, Stephen King had been established as a brand. He hadn't been "outed" as Richard Bachman yet, very few people had encountered Roland Deschain and his quest for the Dark Tower and nobody had any reason to think of him as anything but a talented writer of horror. The movies based on his books led credence to this assessment, and King himself never disputed the tag. Yet, anyone who had seriously read his novels and short story collection knew there was a lot more behind Stephen King than ju ...more
Gabrielle
Spooktober read #1!

It’s hard to have a little Spooktober marathon without including a Stephen King book in the pile, isn’t it? Though some might argue that “Different Seasons” is not really a collection of horror novellas, they still each capture something horrific in their own unique way. I personally prefer King’s writing when he’s not in balls-to-the-walls horror mode. I’m not really into vampires and homicidal clowns: the horrors hidden in the folds of human nature freak me out much more eff
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Anne(marie)
Apr 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-german
Amazing, as always! rtc.
Edward Lorn
Dec 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It all starts with Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption,  wherein the Mangler is mentioned in passing. 
 
Then you move on to Apt Pupil, wherein a banker who went up the river for killing his wife is mentioned by Dussander. 
 
When you round the corner into The Body, you're gifted with four boys wondering if they're going to end up in Shawshank because they trespassed at the local junkyard.
 
Until finally coming across The Breathing Method, a story that does not mention Shawshank, but the "club
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Jason
Dec 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014, for-kindle, reviewed
For the sake of argument, let’s just say that when I was younger I used to think Stephen King was the bomb, and that now I’m 34 and have found that the last few of his books, interestingly enough, have bombed. This would naturally have the effect of forcing me—again, we’re only speaking in hypotheticals here—to reconsider my stance of thinking him a great storyteller. I have grown up, I have matured, I have now had the means to compare Stephen King to other authors that I hadn’t read when I was ...more
Ivan
Nov 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ivan by: Kristijan
My first Steven King's book and it's solid 5 stars. There are multiple reasons I didn't pick one up until now. First of all because I watched some adaptations and I wasn't impressed. Shining was decent but very overrated, I fallen asleep during Dreamcatcher and Under the dome is one of worst caps I watched. Green mile was only truly great thing I watched based on his book (until recently I didn't know Apt pupil is based on book ). So you might say me and Mr King started of on a wrong foot. Secon ...more
Paul Nelson
Nov 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-books-read
Different Seasons is what the word anthology was created for, ok slight exaggeration but you get the idea. This is four absolutely top of the literary tree, superb short stories, three of which have been made into films and I really enjoyed them all.
 
First up we have Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption, everybody’s seen the film, it’s the story of 30 year old Andy Dufresne, who gets a life sentence in Shawshank for the murder of his cheating wife and her lover. The story is told through t
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seak
This is a book of four novellas, three of which were turned into movies, and two of those three nominated for multiple Oscars. Incidentally, they're also the three novellas in this collection that aren't even King's typical fare, horror.

I haven't read a whole lot of King, but what I have I've loved. This set of books is supposed to be some of King's best writing and even with my limited experience, I can tell he's in top form.

I've been on a King kick lately and couldn't resist reading the inspi
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Miloš
Dec 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic!
Tales (not stories :-)) are quite remarkable. Every one of them on their strange way.
I watched Shawshank Redemption movie and I enjoyed, but the story bring something more to it that I like even more.
Ron
Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption - I wonder if more people seen the movie than read the book? The movie I’d guess. I’ve seen the movie too, and this would be my second time reading the novella. There are some stark differences between them, but for the most part the story is the same. Red, played by Morgan Freeman, is one of those differences, in color more than anything else. Freeman did such a good job in the role. For the life of me, while reading, I could not separate his voice from th ...more
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
This was the most disappointing Stephen King book I’ve ever read. Womp to the max.

Shawshank Redemption - 3/5 stars
Apt Pupil - DNF (tw: animal abuse)
The Body - 3/5 stars
Breathing Method - 2/5 stars
Brandon
Sep 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
By 1982, although King had become a tremendously successful horror novelist, he wanted to prove he had the ability to write something a little.. different.  Therefore, with four previously unpublished novellas just lying around, King crammed them into one singular release he dubbed Different Seasons.

Rather than review the whole book in one long blurb, I’ll just share my thoughts on each story individually:

Rita Hayworth & The Shawshank Redemption - I’m sure I’m not going to ruffle any feathers by
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Stephen Edwin King was born the second son of Donald and Nellie Ruth Pillsbury King. After his father left them when Stephen was two, he and his older brother, David, were raised by his mother. Parts of his childhood were spent in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where his father's family was at the time, and in Stratford, Connecticut. When Stephen was eleven, his mother brought her children back to Durham, M ...more

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