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The Green Mile Paperback – Feb 9 1999

518 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Orion (An Imprint of the Orion (Feb. 9 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752826751
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752826752
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 3.1 x 17.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 259 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (518 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #320,051 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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This happened in 1932, when the state penitentiary was still at Cold Mountain. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Kelly Brianna on March 19 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm sure lot's of other people have written vast amounts on the plot of this book, so I'll try and keep it brief. For people who loved The Shawshank Redemption, King returns to writing a story about prison in the 30's. Only this time it's the death row prison, where inmates have short stays. A truly compelling story from page to page. Originally it was a serial novel, split into 6 parts. The parts are in the complete novel and while sometimes there is backtracking and reiterating it does not lessen the book's qualitites. What you have here is King writing as only he does. His ability to take the odd/supernatural and mix it with rich characters and interesting plots, is why he is such an acclaimed and loved author. I'm sure many people have seen the film version of this book and while it is one of the most faithful to his work, I still think that reading the book would be better. I read many books a year and it's rare that one can actually make me tear up, but The Green Mile made me do just that. You will not be disapointed if you read this!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John M. Ford TOP 100 REVIEWER on Feb. 20 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Paul Edgecombe is the "bull-goose screw" in charge of the Green Mile, Cold Mountain Penitentiary's death row. He and his fellow guards have learned to keep things calm on their cell block. They make it clear that misbehavior will not be tolerated, but within reason they grant the condemned prisoners' requests. Things run smoothly.

In the fall of 1932 some new personalities join the mix and things change. Percy Wetmore is a new guard who doesn't want things to run smoothly--he wants to bully and humiliate the prisoners. Eduard Delacroix is a newly condemned prisoner who just wants to teach tricks to Mr. Jingles, a mouse who has found its way into the cell block. "Wild Bill" Wharton is dangerous to anyone who comes near his cell because "he just doesn't care about anything." And John Coffey is a gentle giant, convicted of the brutal rape-murder of two young girls but as quiet and well-behaved a prisoner as the guards have ever seen. As events unfold, it becomes clear that John Coffey has some unusual abilities.

I was a fan of The Green Mile movie, but for some reason put off reading the book. Reading it was a pleasant experience, indeed. First, the movie seems to follow the book closely--most of what I liked about it was in the book to begin with. The book also offered some additional enjoyment. It is structured as two parallel stories, one in 1932 in Cold Mountain Penitentiary and the other in a 1990's retirement home where Paul Edgecombe shares his story with a fellow resident. The interweaving of these two stories and the disclosure of information as they both proceed is skillfully done.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Brian M. Donohue on June 17 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've never been a fan of horror--not, anyway, since childhood when I had my fling with Poe. Otherwise, the interest just hasn't been there. Consequently, I've read very little of King--a couple of short stories from some twenty years ago. But after I saw the outstanding film adaptation of this story, I knew I'd have to read King's original. It has been an experience I won't soon forget, and so I recommend this compelling and beautiful story to all lovers of great literature--horror fans or not.
Having worked with empaths in my counseling practice, I can vouch for the book's accuracy as well as its breathtaking level of artistic achievement. The healer/empath of this story, John Coffey, experiences the same dread, pain, and ambivalence toward his gift of inner sight and feeling that many emapths must endure; this experience is movingly captured in a single paragraph of King's, in which Coffey explains why he is ready to die in the electric chair: "I'm rightly tired of the pain I hear and feel, boss." (p. 424). It's one of those moments in literature that can turn a book into a classic.
The blurbs on the back cover describe this novel as a "tantalizing page-turner". Try to ignore this nonsense: this book is indeed absorbing, but not in a superficial or sensationalistic way. Instead, it draws the reader into an experience of his own inner life, into a meditation on killing as "correction", into reflections about death and aging that have all the weight and depth of anything from our religious or poetic traditions.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michael Beverly on June 2 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I never got into Stephen King when I was younger, I didn't like the genre he wrote in. But I think, over time, he has written stories that fall far from my first impression which happened long ago when I picked up a copy of Cujo and randomly turned to a page that had enough graphic violence to convince me I wasn't interested. In any case, this is the second fictional work by King I've read (the nonfictional book 'On Writing' is also one I enjoyed greatly). I was very impressed and quickly caught up in the story that takes place in 1932 at a prison, specifically the death row there called "The Green Mile".
This review is really for those non Stephen King fans that haven't yet taken the plunge with one of Americas favorite writers. This is a good place to start if you like a good compelling story. King is a master story teller, and if you've avoided him in the past, like I did, because the blood and gore stuff wasn't your style, I think this book might be a good place to find out what a great story teller King is. The other work I've read, "Deloris Clairborne" is also a great story (and great movie too) that really doesn't have that much in the way of "blood and guts gore." In any case, this story is moving.
I had seen the movie twice before reading this book and I found that it didn't inflict any injury on the story, and in fact, I was impressed by how well the movie was done after reading the book. I kept picturing Tom Hanks as I read the story, like he was really the guy I was reading about. If you like the movie, by all means, jump into the book, it's really very good. If you're unsure, watch the movie first, if you enjoy it, you'll like reading the book and I don't think seeing the movie first ruins it at all.
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