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From international bestseller Stephen King, a high-concept, ingenious and terrifying story about the mayhem unleashed when a pulse from a mysterious source transforms all cell phone users into homicidal maniacs.

There’s a reason cell rhymes with hell.

On October 1, God is in His heaven, the stock market stands at 10,140, most of the planes are on time, and Clayton Riddell, an artist from Maine, is almost bouncing up Boylston Street in Boston. He’s just landed a comic book deal that might finally enable him to support his family by making art instead of teaching it. He’s already picked up a small (but expensive!) gift for his long-suffering wife, and he knows just what he’ll get for his boy Johnny. Why not a little treat for himself? Clay’s feeling good about the future.

That changes in a hurry. The cause of the devastation is a phenomenon that will come to be known as The Pulse, and the delivery method is a cell phone. Everyone’s cell phone. Clay and the few desperate survivors who join him suddenly find themselves in the pitch-black night of civilization’s darkest age, surrounded by chaos, carnage, and a human horde that has been reduced to its basest nature...and then begins to evolve.

There’s really no escaping this nightmare. But for Clay, an arrow points home to Maine, and as he and his fellow refugees make their harrowing journey north they begin to see crude signs confirming their direction. A promise, perhaps. Or a threat...

There are 193 million cell phones in the United States alone. Who doesn’t have one? Stephen King’s utterly gripping, gory, and fascinating novel doesn’t just ask the question “Can you hear me now?” It answers it with a vengeance.

Topics: United States of America, Maine, Boston, New England, Suspenseful, Adventurous, Psychological, Angsty, Violent, Zombies, Apocalypse, Text and Instant Messages, Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopia, Survival, Murder, Family, Death, Crime, Road Trip, and American Author

Published: Scribner on
ISBN: 9780743296724
List price: $9.99
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Cell is a little like The Stand. There's the same big apocalyptic event wiping out parts of humanity, and the us against them mentality, similar problems of survival. However, there are quite a few differences, too.

For starters, the first thing I noticed was the much quicker beginning to the action. By page eight, in my copy, things were going to hell. No big build-up introducing us to a ton of characters. I actually quite liked it. It sucked me in pretty fast, and it didn't cost much in terms of characterisation -- I still got to know and love the characters.

It's also not as... explained as The Stand. In that, we knew what was happening. With Cell, we're in the dark and we have no idea what is really going on, or why. We have the same journey of discovery as the characters. The pseudo-science is also on much shakier grounds. I was able to suspend my disbelief enough to read it, but your mileage may well vary. Particularly as, be warned, this book does not come with explanations as to why, which definitely did irritate me.

This reminds me of From A Buick 8, which is the same deal, but even that has more closure than Cell. I quite liked the uncertainty, and the last line, but I wasn't ready to leave the story, really.

Not my favourite King novel, but definitely okay for a quick, immersive read, I think.more
While perhaps not one of King's most noteworthy, this was a fun & fast read. I'd highly recommend it to Stephen King fans or anyone that likes apocalyptic horror novels.more
My original rating was three stars, but overnight it dropped to a mere two stars. Why? Well, I figure that during the last 50 pages of a Stephen King book I should be turning pages like a crazy man, but I was bored! Plus, I didn't feel emotionally invested in these characters, even the father/son relationship that is a theme throughout, and ends on the strength of this relationship. If you cannot get me emotionally involved with the characters after 450 pages, then that is a fault in the writing. Oh well...at least it was quick, and fairly painless.more
Relentless, but familiar tale of the undead acopalypse. Benefits from a genesis vastly different from other similar tales. The ending is the best part of the novel, though fans seem to be split.more
My very initial reaction to when I first heard about this book (waaaay back in 2006): “Oh, new Stephen Ki—HE’S DOING CELL PHONE ZOMBIES omgthisisgoingtobeawesome.” And then I read the book. To be fair, I do prefer the typical zombie—shambling, festering dead who want nothing more than braiiiiins—but over the years, I’ve come to accept other takes on the living dead. Yes, I still have issues with King’s zombies but I don’t hold those issues entirely against this book.

I like the overall apocalypse aspect here. The first three chapters of Clay and Tom trying to make it out of Boston are fantastic. There’s so much massive confusion about how things happened, why they’re happening, and how does it affect the survivors. I loved the early details of how the initial Pulse works, even the note that just overhearing it makes someone go insane. While I don’t like all of Stephen King’s works, I do have to give him credit—aside from two nonfiction books, there’s at least one part in each of his books that terrifies me. There’s also the fact that we don’t really know what caused the Pulse in the first place; it’s speculated that it’s another terrorist attack, but we never really get a definitive answer. (Also, reading the book now makes the premise a lot scarier, IMO—I know only one person who doesn’t have a cell phone. Add in the fact that I use my iPhone a lot….brr.) I also liked that we saw the aftermath of the Pulse, how information is passed from group to group. I really liked that there’s no mass exodus to the ‘safe zone’ and that our main characters are in the minority of survivors, before they get the bright idea to “Hey, let’s torch the zombies.”

I don’t know how I feel about these characters. I don’t hate them, but I didn’t feel like I had connected with them well enough throughout the events. The only character that I really liked throughout the whole book was Tom—he realizes how messed-up the situation is and that the group of survivors needs to take action, but he’s still the voice of reason and tries to see all sides. (Also, I liked the fact that he’s gay and survives, even if it feels like it’s randomly dropped information.) I also did like Alice, mainly for the number of survivor action girl moments she got. However—and this is something I’ve been noticing in my reread of The Stand—she doesn’t feel like a genuine teen girl. I think Stephen King can’t get into the mindset of young women, and while Alice does have one or two great scenes, she reads as too old or too innocent. And the fact that she’s the only one of the survivors to go into hysterics. Jordan was okay—again, he felt too young at times for being twelve and then had moments of being overly mature.

Our hero Clay Riddell is the atypical Stephen King main character—creative person from Maine (he’s a comic book artist writing a series called Dark Wanderer Or “I see what you did there”). I was with Clay’s mission of finding his son and his estranged wife for most of the book—I really liked that Clay was worried about his wife for the first half of the book. I felt like that they actually had a good relationship, if strained at the moment, and even though Clay was more worried about his son, he was still grieving that his wife got hit with the Pulse. What made me lose most of my sympathy is when the survivors finally reach the conversion centers, and Clay sees his zombified wife for the first time…and he justifies shoving her away and blowing her up because “Well, it’s not really her in there anymore, she’s too far gone so she’s technically dead.” Mind you, the end of the book is Clay trying to save his zombified son, really? Really. I know that the later converted zombies aren’t as far gone as the initial wave, but that is just callous thinking. I was kind of hoping for Clay to fail after that.

There are two other issues I have with the book overall. The first being that Stephen King has the politically subtleness of a boulder, and there’s a good three pages of Massachusetts politics and gun laws. I’m not criticizing him for his views, but I don’t need three pages of explaining gun laws and poking at right-wing extremists just to set up the group finding guns. It only really comes up in the first half of the book, so it’s not a huge issue, but still a little irritating.

The second is the problem I had initially with the book. Cell phone rage zombies? Awesome. Hive mind cell phone rage zombies? GAAAAH still awesome but GAAAAAAH. The zombies have telekinesis and can levitate…what? The idea of the hive mind is terrifying and I can buy the telepathy, but once you get into flying zombies, it’s honestly a little silly when you think about it. Sounds terrifying in practice, but really—flying zombies. (And the speaking Latin is a “wut” moment too.)

I still consider this on the lower end of my Stephen King rankings, but I don’t have the knee-jerk reaction of “omg it sucks” as much anymore. There are some good parts—I still love that first half to death—but ultimately, my lack of connection to the characters is what kills it for me.
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I don't know what to think about this book. Part of me loved it. The premise that something so integral to the world today could effectively bring about the end of that world is beyond chilling. It's positively brilliant. The interaction and chemistry between the characters who found each other and banded together after the phone apocalypse was well done. Some moments were searingly touching. The leader of the phone crazies was straight from Hell. But part of me went "Huh?" Telepathy? Telekinesis? Levitation? Seriously? The mental image of the levitating conveyance of phone crazies was a cross between hilarious and ridiculous. But I have to admit that Stephen King got me at the end. Heartwrenching anguish is what I felt... until the last sentence. I really love endings like that. I can play with them in my head forever. So while some aspects of the book made me wonder what happened to Stephen King's imagination, others were breathtaking in their ability to evoke such strong emotions and reminded me why I have remained a Constant Reader of King's for all these years. While overall not my favorite from the Master of Horror, Cell was enjoyable and is recommended.I do NOT recommend, however, the Recorded Books audiobook, narrated by Campbell Scott. The editing on this book was horrible. Scott's voice changes pitch dramatically during sentences that were obviously spliced in as corrections. It was annoying and distracting.more
A post-apocalyptic novel where the apocalypse is delivered via cell phone. Those who answer the call have their minds altered, and become zombie-like. A few of the cell-phone-less bind together to fight the zombies.This was a pretty good horror novel, though not one of my favorite Stephen Kings. I didn't feel quite as "in the mind" of the main character as I usually feel with his books.more
This book was a new spin on the tired zombie theme, couple that with Stephen King's bizarre mind and I thoroughly enjoyed this book.more
Stephen King's novel: Cell, adds a new layer of technology beneath us. It's plot, characters, and general main idea are all amazing. When you pick up this book, reading becomes your passion, and then your dreary eyes glance at the cell phone next to you on the couch. A young man named Clay is a regular man. But then, strange occurrences happen to people all around him. As he is struck by terror, he notices that the problem is the cell phones. He then sets off to find his son and wife, while encountering some pretty helpful people. I recommend this book to anyone out there. It's humor (?), love, and action of a father trying to save his son is an amazing book before you even pick it up.more
Sometime around the present, mayhem breaks loose. People start viciously attacking each other, and all but a few seem to have gone utterly insane. Soon, Boston burns.What happened was known as "the pulse" and it affected everyone in possession of a cell phone at the time. Presumably created with malevolent intent, survivors come to the conclusion that some sort of tone was passed that "reboot" the brains of cell phone users, leaving them in a primal, ultra-violent state. Shortly, however, these "phoners" start gathering en mass; seemingly pacified with music of the likes of Lawrence Welk, Bette Midler, and Johann Pachelbel. In reality, they are being telepathically controlled, to what end, we don't know.And that is ultimately the problem with this novel. We never really know. Clay, a graphic novelist, is in search for his soon, an impossible quest given he actually owned a cell phone. The novel follows Clay, and allies he meets along the way. It is somewhat reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy's The Road in that the greater picture of what is happening is all but ignored for the sake of local survival. Conditions such as in that bleak book could easily have occurred about a month after this book ends. The characters were good as you'd expect from Stephen King, and the pace is quite nice compared with some of his more massive, bloated stories. The end doesn't really tell you how it ends, and is too abrupt and inconclusive by any measure. It's a fun ride while it lasts however.more
For some reason, I had seen quite a few bad reviews on Cell before I read it. Not one to usually dislike a King novel, I did go into this one without the highest of expectations and ended up being very pleasantly surprised.The story centers around a mass event that turns anyone who happens to be on their cell phone at the time into a zombie. Mass chaos ensues and a small group of survivors bands together and tries to figure out what is going on and how to stop it. Some of the plot-line does have some similarity to The Stand, but the characters are fairly unique, the dialog is good, and the action keeps rolling along at a fairly brisk pace. I really liked this novel. I knew that I probably would, but it was a nice surprise that it was as good as it was. I am of the opinion that not everything that Stephen King writes is destined to be a classic, but the majority of his work is well above average and I feel that one day he will be given his long overdue kudos and be placed in the literary canon with the other greats of modern literature.more
I thought this book was action packed and full of suspense. But I stopped reading it because I felt that at most points it had a lack of action, suspense, and had way too much back story. But I still reccommend it to people who enjoy Stephen King thrillers.more
Started off brilliantly, got a bit odd in the middle, and finished off moderate. Won't be reading it again or recommending it any time soon.more
Although this is the first book by Steven King that I’ve read, I already know he’s a fantastic writer. However, his novel Cell was a little blah for my taste. Although it had flesh-eating zombies (which is almost always a good thing) it only covered one character’s point of view, which got very boring.The novel Cell by Steven King follows one specific character, Clay, throughout the entire book. It follows his journey from Boston Massachusetts up to Maine so he could get back to his family. But along the way, he finds out that his son is hiding in a small hut up in Maine, and that his wife had become one of the zombies.Stephen King did not fail to entertain in this book because every second was filled with excitement. But sadly, it wasn’t the excitement that kept me on my seat like most other books. King decided to go on more of a science fiction side to the book then the horror side, which disappointed me. Kings book may have attracted more readers if he had focused less on sci-fi and a little more on those brain-munching zombies.The zombies in Cell became zombies through cell phones (hence the name “Cell”) when a pulse played through their phone, taking control of their mind and turning them into flesh-eating zombies- a.k.a. “phone crazies” to the survivors. The remaining people who didn’t answer the call or simply didn’t have cell phones were the survivors, and had to evade from any zombies and the pulse in order to stay alive and human.Zombies are supposed to feel scary, but in Cell, King lacked the classical zombie feel that everybody is looking for. He lacked the human- hunting, brain-slurping, evil, demented creatures that zombies are. And since the zombies play a major role in this book, it took a huge chunk out of the excitement level of the book. And, because of that, I was a little disappointed in King with this one. But, overall, it was a pretty decent read.more
The human race goes crazy thanks to mobile phones. It's as disturbing as it sounds. This is more a splatter horror than a chilling mess with your mind type, but it's a very good read.more
This is a book for now! With our increasing use of mobile phones and our dependence on them, Stephen King has written a masterpiece that feeds on our paranoia and I loved it!Another classic that my pre-teen son will be getting!more
What can I say that is positive about this book? The only thing that comes to mind is, Thank goodness it was not another page longer. I was committed to finishing this book as writing a review for it would require I push onward to the end. Now here is the deal, I haven't read a King book since I was in middle school, and I can tell you also I was simultaneously reading a Robert McCammon book at the same time. This made my experience with Cell more profound. Here I am reading, The Queen of Bedlam, by McCammon an author who seems to paint his books verbally with skillful brush strokes and then I'm reading a book that seems to have been written by a child and never edited. Cell, was not polished and from the acclaim that King was given early on in his career as an author this book just piggy backed on their shoulders and King was able to reap thousands. Most likely laughing all the way to the bank!! The pages of this book are bet used as toilet paper, and the script and story line are best never to be heard by human ears again.In this book, Cell phones emit a pulse and those using them become zombies. Fair enough. But oh no, King wasn't done there! That wasn't enough. He had to make the zombies turn all X-men like. Now they don't just chomp brains, they can levitate, yes that wasn't a spelling error. These zombies can make like superman and fly. Uber gay. Then, they have telepathy! WTF! Seriously, King seemed to be grasping at straws for new ideas here! I was waiting for zombies to start shooting laser beams from their eyes and pop out with adamantium claws any second. Telepathic powers wasn't where it ended. These zombies can get into your mind and make you kill yourself. Ummmmm okay?? If there is a book out there that makes you want to kill yourself, Cell is the one! I felt like bashing my own head in at the absurdity of this novel, if novel is really even the right word to describe this book. If I could turn back time I would read, "One fish, two fish, red fish blue fish" by Dr. Seuss a thousand times before reading this crappy tome.I guess from now on I'll just stick to reading books from King's drug days, since apparently that's where all of his creative genius came from in the past.more
This thriller disappointed me at first - it did not live up to my expectations (set by other Stephen King novels). However, as the book progressed, it got more interesting, and became even heart-breaking. I nearly cried at the end. It makes my top ten in my favorite thrillers least.more
The concept of this book is brilliant, the execution not so unfortunately. However in saying that, I found it a good book to read as is most of King's works.The story surrounds the end of the world as we know it due to our obsession with the mobile phone (Who? Me?) and the carnage that takes place after "the Pulse". But amongst it all are 'survivors', those that couldn't use or didn't own a cell phone, and it plots a group who band together in the quest to avoid (and destroy) the 'phoners' as well as search for their loved ones in case they 'survived' also.The 'end of the world' occurs within the first three pages, so you're immediately into it, and in true King style, there is no holding back on graphic narrative. And for most of the book you are held in suspense as the 'survivors' make their way from place to place. And when the 'phoners' start evolving, things take an eerie turn, but then it was pushed a little too far in my mind - believing a classic muscle car can rebuild itself after crashing, or pets coming back to life after being buried in an ancient Indian burial ground just seemed more believable than what the 'phoners' could do...but don't let that influence you at all, it is a good story. PS...damned his way of ending! Left me hanging...more
A bit gorier than I like but a good readmore
This is one King book that I'll gladly put in my top ten King stories. I liked that there was some serious sci/fi mixed into the horror and that the real culprits who started the zombification (okay, so I might have made that word up) through the pulse are never discovered as this made it even more sinister. I found this book to be more believable than most King horrors because it made me think "Just maybe, this is all possible."I even liked the ending immensely though it was less of a climax than one might expect. I think it could translate very well to film. All in all, this book was an honest-to-goodness page turner.more
While not King's best, Cell is a decent read.The action starts very quickly, which was a pleasant surprise. I've come to expect more measured build-up from King, but this shockingly fast start worked in this case. It kept me up reading much longer than I'd intended that first night.I was slightly concerned that King had spoiled his own ending near the beginning of the story, but such wasn't the case.I found myself wanting more in terms of the mechanics behind the Pulse, but I suppose that would have made it a science fiction story rather than horror. So I can't really fault him for that.more
It has been a long while since I have read a King novel and enjoyed it. This may not be King's best work, but it was better than previous novels. Loved the whole hi-tech Zombies. Even though you never find out who was able to use cell phones against all of mankind and the ending left you with questions, it was a good read and the characters were likable.more
This book is almost a 'Stand' for the digital age. Someone (it is never confirmed who) has found a way to use a cell phone to wipe peoples minds. The only survivors appear to be the young, old and the technically inept.The affected people walk around like zombies and wouldn't look out of place in dawn of the dead.Cell is a typical King story, with good 'v' bad, and his usual entourage of socially inept characers trek across the landscape fighting for survival.As with most King books, I really enjoyed it and the pages seemed to fly by. Unfortunately the end was just too.... I don't know... convenient. It was almost as if King wanted it to be over, and the last 50 pages appeared rushed. I won't say too much about it as this would ruin the ending for people.All in all a good read that was enjoyable.... can't wait for the film to come out.more
This book was exciting, and kept me on the edge of my seat.more
I think Stephen King is fantastic. But this book is not his best. Do you know, I went back and re-read the first page, because that is where the big failure was for me. 'a young man of no particular importance to history came walking - almost bouncing - east along Boylston Street' This sentence refers to the hero, and for me, too lightly. I struggled from here to give the main character any real credence.Now, the main character aside, this book seemed like a revisit of my favourite King novel, The Stand. Event wipes out people / civilisation and sets two groups of people against each other. One of the weaknesses by comparison was the inability for me to care about the characters in the story. And the other key weakness was the frailty of the plot.Still - I needed an easy read after Wolf Hall - and this delivered! King delivers a really easy read - his language skills on this front are remarkable. And given the numbers of people on LibraryThing that have this novel - all power to King's success.more
A great apocalyptic adventure from the master storyteller. Well paced and readable throughout, although gory in places (well what do you expect from King). I do love a good story where misused technology causes a reset to civilisation.more
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Reviews

Cell is a little like The Stand. There's the same big apocalyptic event wiping out parts of humanity, and the us against them mentality, similar problems of survival. However, there are quite a few differences, too.

For starters, the first thing I noticed was the much quicker beginning to the action. By page eight, in my copy, things were going to hell. No big build-up introducing us to a ton of characters. I actually quite liked it. It sucked me in pretty fast, and it didn't cost much in terms of characterisation -- I still got to know and love the characters.

It's also not as... explained as The Stand. In that, we knew what was happening. With Cell, we're in the dark and we have no idea what is really going on, or why. We have the same journey of discovery as the characters. The pseudo-science is also on much shakier grounds. I was able to suspend my disbelief enough to read it, but your mileage may well vary. Particularly as, be warned, this book does not come with explanations as to why, which definitely did irritate me.

This reminds me of From A Buick 8, which is the same deal, but even that has more closure than Cell. I quite liked the uncertainty, and the last line, but I wasn't ready to leave the story, really.

Not my favourite King novel, but definitely okay for a quick, immersive read, I think.more
While perhaps not one of King's most noteworthy, this was a fun & fast read. I'd highly recommend it to Stephen King fans or anyone that likes apocalyptic horror novels.more
My original rating was three stars, but overnight it dropped to a mere two stars. Why? Well, I figure that during the last 50 pages of a Stephen King book I should be turning pages like a crazy man, but I was bored! Plus, I didn't feel emotionally invested in these characters, even the father/son relationship that is a theme throughout, and ends on the strength of this relationship. If you cannot get me emotionally involved with the characters after 450 pages, then that is a fault in the writing. Oh well...at least it was quick, and fairly painless.more
Relentless, but familiar tale of the undead acopalypse. Benefits from a genesis vastly different from other similar tales. The ending is the best part of the novel, though fans seem to be split.more
My very initial reaction to when I first heard about this book (waaaay back in 2006): “Oh, new Stephen Ki—HE’S DOING CELL PHONE ZOMBIES omgthisisgoingtobeawesome.” And then I read the book. To be fair, I do prefer the typical zombie—shambling, festering dead who want nothing more than braiiiiins—but over the years, I’ve come to accept other takes on the living dead. Yes, I still have issues with King’s zombies but I don’t hold those issues entirely against this book.

I like the overall apocalypse aspect here. The first three chapters of Clay and Tom trying to make it out of Boston are fantastic. There’s so much massive confusion about how things happened, why they’re happening, and how does it affect the survivors. I loved the early details of how the initial Pulse works, even the note that just overhearing it makes someone go insane. While I don’t like all of Stephen King’s works, I do have to give him credit—aside from two nonfiction books, there’s at least one part in each of his books that terrifies me. There’s also the fact that we don’t really know what caused the Pulse in the first place; it’s speculated that it’s another terrorist attack, but we never really get a definitive answer. (Also, reading the book now makes the premise a lot scarier, IMO—I know only one person who doesn’t have a cell phone. Add in the fact that I use my iPhone a lot….brr.) I also liked that we saw the aftermath of the Pulse, how information is passed from group to group. I really liked that there’s no mass exodus to the ‘safe zone’ and that our main characters are in the minority of survivors, before they get the bright idea to “Hey, let’s torch the zombies.”

I don’t know how I feel about these characters. I don’t hate them, but I didn’t feel like I had connected with them well enough throughout the events. The only character that I really liked throughout the whole book was Tom—he realizes how messed-up the situation is and that the group of survivors needs to take action, but he’s still the voice of reason and tries to see all sides. (Also, I liked the fact that he’s gay and survives, even if it feels like it’s randomly dropped information.) I also did like Alice, mainly for the number of survivor action girl moments she got. However—and this is something I’ve been noticing in my reread of The Stand—she doesn’t feel like a genuine teen girl. I think Stephen King can’t get into the mindset of young women, and while Alice does have one or two great scenes, she reads as too old or too innocent. And the fact that she’s the only one of the survivors to go into hysterics. Jordan was okay—again, he felt too young at times for being twelve and then had moments of being overly mature.

Our hero Clay Riddell is the atypical Stephen King main character—creative person from Maine (he’s a comic book artist writing a series called Dark Wanderer Or “I see what you did there”). I was with Clay’s mission of finding his son and his estranged wife for most of the book—I really liked that Clay was worried about his wife for the first half of the book. I felt like that they actually had a good relationship, if strained at the moment, and even though Clay was more worried about his son, he was still grieving that his wife got hit with the Pulse. What made me lose most of my sympathy is when the survivors finally reach the conversion centers, and Clay sees his zombified wife for the first time…and he justifies shoving her away and blowing her up because “Well, it’s not really her in there anymore, she’s too far gone so she’s technically dead.” Mind you, the end of the book is Clay trying to save his zombified son, really? Really. I know that the later converted zombies aren’t as far gone as the initial wave, but that is just callous thinking. I was kind of hoping for Clay to fail after that.

There are two other issues I have with the book overall. The first being that Stephen King has the politically subtleness of a boulder, and there’s a good three pages of Massachusetts politics and gun laws. I’m not criticizing him for his views, but I don’t need three pages of explaining gun laws and poking at right-wing extremists just to set up the group finding guns. It only really comes up in the first half of the book, so it’s not a huge issue, but still a little irritating.

The second is the problem I had initially with the book. Cell phone rage zombies? Awesome. Hive mind cell phone rage zombies? GAAAAH still awesome but GAAAAAAH. The zombies have telekinesis and can levitate…what? The idea of the hive mind is terrifying and I can buy the telepathy, but once you get into flying zombies, it’s honestly a little silly when you think about it. Sounds terrifying in practice, but really—flying zombies. (And the speaking Latin is a “wut” moment too.)

I still consider this on the lower end of my Stephen King rankings, but I don’t have the knee-jerk reaction of “omg it sucks” as much anymore. There are some good parts—I still love that first half to death—but ultimately, my lack of connection to the characters is what kills it for me.
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I don't know what to think about this book. Part of me loved it. The premise that something so integral to the world today could effectively bring about the end of that world is beyond chilling. It's positively brilliant. The interaction and chemistry between the characters who found each other and banded together after the phone apocalypse was well done. Some moments were searingly touching. The leader of the phone crazies was straight from Hell. But part of me went "Huh?" Telepathy? Telekinesis? Levitation? Seriously? The mental image of the levitating conveyance of phone crazies was a cross between hilarious and ridiculous. But I have to admit that Stephen King got me at the end. Heartwrenching anguish is what I felt... until the last sentence. I really love endings like that. I can play with them in my head forever. So while some aspects of the book made me wonder what happened to Stephen King's imagination, others were breathtaking in their ability to evoke such strong emotions and reminded me why I have remained a Constant Reader of King's for all these years. While overall not my favorite from the Master of Horror, Cell was enjoyable and is recommended.I do NOT recommend, however, the Recorded Books audiobook, narrated by Campbell Scott. The editing on this book was horrible. Scott's voice changes pitch dramatically during sentences that were obviously spliced in as corrections. It was annoying and distracting.more
A post-apocalyptic novel where the apocalypse is delivered via cell phone. Those who answer the call have their minds altered, and become zombie-like. A few of the cell-phone-less bind together to fight the zombies.This was a pretty good horror novel, though not one of my favorite Stephen Kings. I didn't feel quite as "in the mind" of the main character as I usually feel with his books.more
This book was a new spin on the tired zombie theme, couple that with Stephen King's bizarre mind and I thoroughly enjoyed this book.more
Stephen King's novel: Cell, adds a new layer of technology beneath us. It's plot, characters, and general main idea are all amazing. When you pick up this book, reading becomes your passion, and then your dreary eyes glance at the cell phone next to you on the couch. A young man named Clay is a regular man. But then, strange occurrences happen to people all around him. As he is struck by terror, he notices that the problem is the cell phones. He then sets off to find his son and wife, while encountering some pretty helpful people. I recommend this book to anyone out there. It's humor (?), love, and action of a father trying to save his son is an amazing book before you even pick it up.more
Sometime around the present, mayhem breaks loose. People start viciously attacking each other, and all but a few seem to have gone utterly insane. Soon, Boston burns.What happened was known as "the pulse" and it affected everyone in possession of a cell phone at the time. Presumably created with malevolent intent, survivors come to the conclusion that some sort of tone was passed that "reboot" the brains of cell phone users, leaving them in a primal, ultra-violent state. Shortly, however, these "phoners" start gathering en mass; seemingly pacified with music of the likes of Lawrence Welk, Bette Midler, and Johann Pachelbel. In reality, they are being telepathically controlled, to what end, we don't know.And that is ultimately the problem with this novel. We never really know. Clay, a graphic novelist, is in search for his soon, an impossible quest given he actually owned a cell phone. The novel follows Clay, and allies he meets along the way. It is somewhat reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy's The Road in that the greater picture of what is happening is all but ignored for the sake of local survival. Conditions such as in that bleak book could easily have occurred about a month after this book ends. The characters were good as you'd expect from Stephen King, and the pace is quite nice compared with some of his more massive, bloated stories. The end doesn't really tell you how it ends, and is too abrupt and inconclusive by any measure. It's a fun ride while it lasts however.more
For some reason, I had seen quite a few bad reviews on Cell before I read it. Not one to usually dislike a King novel, I did go into this one without the highest of expectations and ended up being very pleasantly surprised.The story centers around a mass event that turns anyone who happens to be on their cell phone at the time into a zombie. Mass chaos ensues and a small group of survivors bands together and tries to figure out what is going on and how to stop it. Some of the plot-line does have some similarity to The Stand, but the characters are fairly unique, the dialog is good, and the action keeps rolling along at a fairly brisk pace. I really liked this novel. I knew that I probably would, but it was a nice surprise that it was as good as it was. I am of the opinion that not everything that Stephen King writes is destined to be a classic, but the majority of his work is well above average and I feel that one day he will be given his long overdue kudos and be placed in the literary canon with the other greats of modern literature.more
I thought this book was action packed and full of suspense. But I stopped reading it because I felt that at most points it had a lack of action, suspense, and had way too much back story. But I still reccommend it to people who enjoy Stephen King thrillers.more
Started off brilliantly, got a bit odd in the middle, and finished off moderate. Won't be reading it again or recommending it any time soon.more
Although this is the first book by Steven King that I’ve read, I already know he’s a fantastic writer. However, his novel Cell was a little blah for my taste. Although it had flesh-eating zombies (which is almost always a good thing) it only covered one character’s point of view, which got very boring.The novel Cell by Steven King follows one specific character, Clay, throughout the entire book. It follows his journey from Boston Massachusetts up to Maine so he could get back to his family. But along the way, he finds out that his son is hiding in a small hut up in Maine, and that his wife had become one of the zombies.Stephen King did not fail to entertain in this book because every second was filled with excitement. But sadly, it wasn’t the excitement that kept me on my seat like most other books. King decided to go on more of a science fiction side to the book then the horror side, which disappointed me. Kings book may have attracted more readers if he had focused less on sci-fi and a little more on those brain-munching zombies.The zombies in Cell became zombies through cell phones (hence the name “Cell”) when a pulse played through their phone, taking control of their mind and turning them into flesh-eating zombies- a.k.a. “phone crazies” to the survivors. The remaining people who didn’t answer the call or simply didn’t have cell phones were the survivors, and had to evade from any zombies and the pulse in order to stay alive and human.Zombies are supposed to feel scary, but in Cell, King lacked the classical zombie feel that everybody is looking for. He lacked the human- hunting, brain-slurping, evil, demented creatures that zombies are. And since the zombies play a major role in this book, it took a huge chunk out of the excitement level of the book. And, because of that, I was a little disappointed in King with this one. But, overall, it was a pretty decent read.more
The human race goes crazy thanks to mobile phones. It's as disturbing as it sounds. This is more a splatter horror than a chilling mess with your mind type, but it's a very good read.more
This is a book for now! With our increasing use of mobile phones and our dependence on them, Stephen King has written a masterpiece that feeds on our paranoia and I loved it!Another classic that my pre-teen son will be getting!more
What can I say that is positive about this book? The only thing that comes to mind is, Thank goodness it was not another page longer. I was committed to finishing this book as writing a review for it would require I push onward to the end. Now here is the deal, I haven't read a King book since I was in middle school, and I can tell you also I was simultaneously reading a Robert McCammon book at the same time. This made my experience with Cell more profound. Here I am reading, The Queen of Bedlam, by McCammon an author who seems to paint his books verbally with skillful brush strokes and then I'm reading a book that seems to have been written by a child and never edited. Cell, was not polished and from the acclaim that King was given early on in his career as an author this book just piggy backed on their shoulders and King was able to reap thousands. Most likely laughing all the way to the bank!! The pages of this book are bet used as toilet paper, and the script and story line are best never to be heard by human ears again.In this book, Cell phones emit a pulse and those using them become zombies. Fair enough. But oh no, King wasn't done there! That wasn't enough. He had to make the zombies turn all X-men like. Now they don't just chomp brains, they can levitate, yes that wasn't a spelling error. These zombies can make like superman and fly. Uber gay. Then, they have telepathy! WTF! Seriously, King seemed to be grasping at straws for new ideas here! I was waiting for zombies to start shooting laser beams from their eyes and pop out with adamantium claws any second. Telepathic powers wasn't where it ended. These zombies can get into your mind and make you kill yourself. Ummmmm okay?? If there is a book out there that makes you want to kill yourself, Cell is the one! I felt like bashing my own head in at the absurdity of this novel, if novel is really even the right word to describe this book. If I could turn back time I would read, "One fish, two fish, red fish blue fish" by Dr. Seuss a thousand times before reading this crappy tome.I guess from now on I'll just stick to reading books from King's drug days, since apparently that's where all of his creative genius came from in the past.more
This thriller disappointed me at first - it did not live up to my expectations (set by other Stephen King novels). However, as the book progressed, it got more interesting, and became even heart-breaking. I nearly cried at the end. It makes my top ten in my favorite thrillers least.more
The concept of this book is brilliant, the execution not so unfortunately. However in saying that, I found it a good book to read as is most of King's works.The story surrounds the end of the world as we know it due to our obsession with the mobile phone (Who? Me?) and the carnage that takes place after "the Pulse". But amongst it all are 'survivors', those that couldn't use or didn't own a cell phone, and it plots a group who band together in the quest to avoid (and destroy) the 'phoners' as well as search for their loved ones in case they 'survived' also.The 'end of the world' occurs within the first three pages, so you're immediately into it, and in true King style, there is no holding back on graphic narrative. And for most of the book you are held in suspense as the 'survivors' make their way from place to place. And when the 'phoners' start evolving, things take an eerie turn, but then it was pushed a little too far in my mind - believing a classic muscle car can rebuild itself after crashing, or pets coming back to life after being buried in an ancient Indian burial ground just seemed more believable than what the 'phoners' could do...but don't let that influence you at all, it is a good story. PS...damned his way of ending! Left me hanging...more
A bit gorier than I like but a good readmore
This is one King book that I'll gladly put in my top ten King stories. I liked that there was some serious sci/fi mixed into the horror and that the real culprits who started the zombification (okay, so I might have made that word up) through the pulse are never discovered as this made it even more sinister. I found this book to be more believable than most King horrors because it made me think "Just maybe, this is all possible."I even liked the ending immensely though it was less of a climax than one might expect. I think it could translate very well to film. All in all, this book was an honest-to-goodness page turner.more
While not King's best, Cell is a decent read.The action starts very quickly, which was a pleasant surprise. I've come to expect more measured build-up from King, but this shockingly fast start worked in this case. It kept me up reading much longer than I'd intended that first night.I was slightly concerned that King had spoiled his own ending near the beginning of the story, but such wasn't the case.I found myself wanting more in terms of the mechanics behind the Pulse, but I suppose that would have made it a science fiction story rather than horror. So I can't really fault him for that.more
It has been a long while since I have read a King novel and enjoyed it. This may not be King's best work, but it was better than previous novels. Loved the whole hi-tech Zombies. Even though you never find out who was able to use cell phones against all of mankind and the ending left you with questions, it was a good read and the characters were likable.more
This book is almost a 'Stand' for the digital age. Someone (it is never confirmed who) has found a way to use a cell phone to wipe peoples minds. The only survivors appear to be the young, old and the technically inept.The affected people walk around like zombies and wouldn't look out of place in dawn of the dead.Cell is a typical King story, with good 'v' bad, and his usual entourage of socially inept characers trek across the landscape fighting for survival.As with most King books, I really enjoyed it and the pages seemed to fly by. Unfortunately the end was just too.... I don't know... convenient. It was almost as if King wanted it to be over, and the last 50 pages appeared rushed. I won't say too much about it as this would ruin the ending for people.All in all a good read that was enjoyable.... can't wait for the film to come out.more
This book was exciting, and kept me on the edge of my seat.more
I think Stephen King is fantastic. But this book is not his best. Do you know, I went back and re-read the first page, because that is where the big failure was for me. 'a young man of no particular importance to history came walking - almost bouncing - east along Boylston Street' This sentence refers to the hero, and for me, too lightly. I struggled from here to give the main character any real credence.Now, the main character aside, this book seemed like a revisit of my favourite King novel, The Stand. Event wipes out people / civilisation and sets two groups of people against each other. One of the weaknesses by comparison was the inability for me to care about the characters in the story. And the other key weakness was the frailty of the plot.Still - I needed an easy read after Wolf Hall - and this delivered! King delivers a really easy read - his language skills on this front are remarkable. And given the numbers of people on LibraryThing that have this novel - all power to King's success.more
A great apocalyptic adventure from the master storyteller. Well paced and readable throughout, although gory in places (well what do you expect from King). I do love a good story where misused technology causes a reset to civilisation.more
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