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The Langoliers

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King, der Virtuose des Schreckens, entführt den Leser auf zwei Reisen in einen Kosmos rätselhafter Alpträume:

Seltsame Dinge ereignen sich an Bord eines Flugzeugs, das durch einen Riß in der Zeit im Irrealen verschwindet. Ein ganz normaler Linienflug gerät zu einer Odyssee auswegloser Schrecken. Und ein Schriftsteller bekommt Besuch von einem Mann, der behauptet, dieser habe ihm eine Geschichte gestohlen – Beginn eines Horrortrips in die mörderischen Abgründe einer schizophrenen Psyche...

510 pages, Paperback

First published September 24, 1990

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About the author

Stephen King

2,527 books827k followers
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, Maine, for good. Her parents, Guy and Nellie Pillsbury, had become incapacitated with old age, and Ruth King was persuaded by her sisters to take over the physical care of them. Other family members provided a small house in Durham and financial support. After Stephen's grandparents passed away, Mrs. King found work in the kitchens of Pineland, a nearby residential facility for the mentally challenged.

Stephen attended the grammar school in Durham and Lisbon Falls High School, graduating in 1966. From his sophomore year at the University of Maine at Orono, he wrote a weekly column for the school newspaper, THE MAINE CAMPUS. He was also active in student politics, serving as a member of the Student Senate. He came to support the anti-war movement on the Orono campus, arriving at his stance from a conservative view that the war in Vietnam was unconstitutional. He graduated in 1970, with a B.A. in English and qualified to teach on the high school level. A draft board examination immediately post-graduation found him 4-F on grounds of high blood pressure, limited vision, flat feet, and punctured eardrums.

He met Tabitha Spruce in the stacks of the Fogler Library at the University, where they both worked as students; they married in January of 1971. As Stephen was unable to find placement as a teacher immediately, the Kings lived on his earnings as a laborer at an industrial laundry, and her student loan and savings, with an occasional boost from a short story sale to men's magazines.

Stephen made his first professional short story sale ("The Glass Floor") to Startling Mystery Stories in 1967. Throughout the early years of his marriage, he continued to sell stories to men's magazines. Many were gathered into the Night Shift collection or appeared in other anthologies.

In the fall of 1971, Stephen began teaching English at Hampden Academy, the public high school in Hampden, Maine. Writing in the evenings and on the weekends, he continued to produce short stories and to work on novels.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 777 reviews
Profile Image for Peter.
2,776 reviews496 followers
May 18, 2020
Shooting stars only! This is one of the most terrifying mixtures of sci-fi meets horror I ever read. Brian is flying to Boston since he got notice that his ex-wife has died. It's Flight 29. In the early morning only a handful of passengers is left in the 767. Where is the rest? Why can fillings, clamps and purses be found on the seats? At first Brian, an aircraft captain, thinks there must have been an accident. But something worse is waiting for them. One of the passengers, Craig Toomy calls them "Langoliers". What are those things and is there a possibility to fly out of this nightmare come true? This page turning novella is completely off the wall: Gaps in time, Mary Celeste mentioned, terrible monsters. When you enter this flight you're into a roller coaster trip of horror. Definitely no cure against fear of flying. You will also find this story in the anthology Four Past Midnight. Absolutely recommended. A modern classic!
Profile Image for Dennis.
658 reviews276 followers
August 23, 2021
2021 re-read:

Heh, I'm an idiot. You see, I read this book back in 2016 when I was young (*cough*) and stupid. Not only did I not enjoy it, I have even gone so far as to mention it frequently as an example of SK books that are crap. Well, it is not. Oops?

We are reading King's collection Four Past Midnight in one of my groups right now. And I've been in the mood for something that takes place on an airplane or at an airport for quite some time now, so I thought, let's give it another try. Thank God my idiocy is not permanent. Apparently. Because this was fun.

A couple of people wake up during a commercial flight from LA to Boston and realize that while they were sleeping the crew and the other passengers have disappeared. What has happened? Well, that's the question, and as long as the answer isn't clear this story is super intriguing. To speculate about this was a lot of fun. Because I'm not only an idiot, I have also the ability to completely wipe any story from my memory.

It's true that when we are getting the answers, leave the land of sanity behind for a while and the whole thing is less and less grounded in reality the book isn't great. Or maybe it is just less enjoyable to me because of personal preferences. But when the characters are trying to find a way out of their situation and the story is nearing its conclusion I was again enjoying myself quite a bit. And the ending is actually rather cool.

So, yeah, I've changed my mind about this one.

3.5 stars. And I'm even rounding it up.

Now I'm curious to see what I'll be thinking about the other story that I've already read/rated/reviewed and if that will end up being less embarrassing.

Old idiotic review:

I once owned the paperback edition of this one but gave it away.

What the blurb doesn’t mention is that this is a collection of two stories. In addition to Langoliers it also contains Secret Window, Secret Garden (King’s collection Four Past Midnight, in which both stories are included along with The Sun Dog and The Library Police wasn’t available in German until 2016 – a mere 26 years after its original publication).

My rating is only for Langoliers (322 pages), which has been a huge letdown for me at the time. Back in 2016 this was only the second Stephen King novel I had ever read - the first one being Needful Things. Well, I love Needful Things and thought that Langoliers was crap. A sign of things to come for my relationship with this author.

Of course I very much enjoyed Secret Window, Secret Garden then and couldn’t make up my mind how to rate the book as a whole. So, I didn’t. Like I said, the blurb doesn’t even mention the second story and I guess it isn’t included in the original language edition either.

So, all this to say that I think that Langoliers sucked. And that my rating for the other story is to be found somewhere else.

Profile Image for Carol.
1,370 reviews2,155 followers
November 10, 2020
"The Strange Plight of Flight 29."

THE LANGOLIERS....the bad something....had come. Too bad for exhausted 43 year old Captain Brian Engle who just flew flagship service from Tokyo to LAX amidst strong headwinds and a dangerous pressurization problem that developed during the latter part of the flight. Ready to hit the sack with his pounding headache, the Captain is shocked by tragic news that requires he immediately fly from LAX to Boston. As a deadheading passenger....luckily he can sleep.

Now at 36 thousand feet going 500 miles per hour over mid-America, Flight 29 experiences a strange otherworldly phenomenon and another shock for Captain Engle and a few passengers as they awaken.

THE LANGOLIERS are deadly creepy-crawling munchkins that you need to avoid....if you want to live.

From 1989, an entertaining Stephen King ride into the unknown......

Profile Image for Chris Lee.
114 reviews37 followers
January 21, 2023
As I waded my way through this compact and thrilling novella, I couldn’t help but feel absorbed by the terror and helplessness of the diverse personalities onboard the cross-country flight. Even though I thoroughly enjoy every Stephen King book I get my hands on, this one hit a bit different for me. It has all of the spine-tingling bits, stab-stab situations, and humor that you have come to expect, but the overall premise is where it shines.

// A group of people board a red-eye flight are traveling from Cali to Boston. Some of them fall asleep, and when they wake up, the world is not as they left it when they drifted off. //

When I think of horror onboard a plane (or just about every time I look out onto the wing of a plane when I fly), my mind instantly drifts to Richard Matheson’s short story, "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet." It’s a classic story that plays with your emotions (and sanity) in a claustrophobic setting. Now, in the Langoliers, instead of crazed clowns or residents becoming vampires, these passengers are being stalked by something much more sinister. They are being ***** by a ***** in a ***** and ultimately end up *****. Wait, you didn’t think I would spoil the plot, right? Well, in all seriousness, there is not much to spoil, and if I told you what happens, I think you might just shrug and say "I’ll pass," but you would be missing out on a fun little story.

// “Brian realized that they were unzipping more than the world - they were opening all the depths of forever.” //

I do not want to talk about the story too much because I believe it is so much more fun to try and decipher what is happening as you go, but it basically follows a rag-tag group of passengers as they try and find out what is happening to them as something goes awry during their flight. We have an author, a pilot, a visually impaired girl, and a few other colorful characters who make their way through some bewilderment, shocking situations, and life-altering choices. One by one, each passenger gets a moment to air their theory on what is going on and ultimately decide if they are going to help or harm the situation. At this point, you might be thinking (and I did the same) that the passengers are just going to be attacked by some overtly strange creature and the plane will be brought down. It was a fleeting thought for me because this is King we are talking about here; it’s going to have that extra bit of symbolism and uncanny creative flair tacked on.

──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗── Mile high club ──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗──

**This next bit does not spoil much, but I thought I would just throw that warning out there just in case.** Not all of the tension happens at 30,000 feet. The passengers eventually land in an airport that is deserted and have to try and figure out why nobody is around. Now, I have to think that at the time, this was pretty ground-breaking stuff. We have had an incredible amount of single-location, escape-style stories in the past few years, but this one is just so much fun, and original to boot!

──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗── Beach balls? ──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗──

The Langoliers. What are they? Well, that would be a spoiler, but I love the fact that they are just an entity, nothing flashy; they just get down to business. Not unlike Michael Myers.

// “All the outside world beyond” //

All in all, I really had a fun time with this book. I mean, some of the characters are downright despicable and take advantage of others, but there is quite a bit of heartwarming material that elevates the doom and gloom. The time in the air and on the ground was refreshingly simple and not bogged down with clever explanations and exposition. It could easily be a Twilight Zone episode. You know what? It is all coming full circle. Nightmare at 20,000 Feet was a Twilight Zone episode that featured (pause) a (pause) decent (pause) performance (pause) by the one and only William Shatner.

****Hopefully, ya got the joke. The pauses were an ode to his incredible acting style. 😁 ****

──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗── Extra 📝’s ──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗──

●○ Andromeda Strain (one of my faves), Sherlock, and Poirot references. - GOLD
●○ Favorite character, and it’s not even a contest, is Dinah.
●○ What the Langoliers represent – Clever.
●○ The ending was surprisingly exactly what I expected.
●○ First half - 😲
●○ Middle - 🧐
●○ End - 🤯

──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗── 🎵🎵 Music queues 🎵🎵 ──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗──

●○ AC/DC - Highway to Hell
●○ Spiritbox – Eternal Blue
●○ Copeland – I Think I’m Safer on An Airplane
●○ Vola – These Black Claws
●○ Caskets – Falling Apart
●○ Deftones - Passenger

──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗── 4 ★'s ──∗ ⋅◈⋅ ∗──
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,564 reviews41 followers
August 13, 2019
The Langoliers, Stephen King
The Langoliers is a horror miniseries consisting of two episodes of 1½ hours each. It was directed and written by Tom Holland and based on the novella by Stephen King from the four part anthology book Four past Midnight. The series was produced by Mitchell Galin and David R. Kappes. The miniseries originally aired May 14–15, 1995 on the ABC network. During a red eye flight of a Lockheed L-1011 from Los Angeles International Airport to Boston Logan International Airport, the plane flies through a strange light, and most of the passengers and flight crew disappear, leaving behind only personal artifacts. Only those passengers who were asleep remain, and discover the predicament when they wake. Pilot Brian Engle, deadheading on the flight, takes the controls; unable to contact any other airport, he decides to land the plane at Bangor International Airport because of its long runway.
تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز یازدهم ماه آگوست سال 2010 میلادی
عنوان: راز؛ نویسنده: استیون (استیفن) کینگ؛ مترجم: محمد قصاع ؛ تهران : افق‏‫ ، 1388؛ در 329 ص؛ شابک: 9789643695583؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان امریکایی - سده 20 م‬‬
مردی به دلیل خیانت همسرش و به رغم عشقش به او به ویلایش در کنار دریاچه ای دور افتاده پناه میبرد تا رمانی بنویسد. اما مردی غریبه از راه میرسد و او را متهم به سرقت ادبی میکند. سپس چند قتل و آتش سوزی رخ میدهد اما هنوز رازی ناگشوده در میان است. نقل از متن مقدمه نویسنده: «مقدمه ی نویسنده: من جزو آن گروه از انسانهایی هستم که معتقدند زندگی مجموعه زنجیری از دورها و دایره هاست؛ دایره هایی درون دایره های دیگر، که بعضی متقاطع هستند، و ترکیب میشوند و بعضی تنها و مستقل به گردش خود ادامه میدهند، اما تمام آنها وظیفه ی متناهی و تکرار شونده ی خود را انجام میدهند. من این تصور انتزاعی که زندگی را ماشینی مولد و کارآمد میداند، دوست دارم، شاید به این دلیل که زندگی واقعی از فاصله ی نزدیک و شخصی بسیار عجیب و آشفته به نظر میرسد. خیلی خوب است که انسان بتواند گه گاه کمی از همه چیز فاصله بگیرد و بگوید: «شکلی کلی به طور واقعی در زندگی وجود دارد! من گر چه معنی آن را نمیفهمم، اما خدا میداند که آن را میبینم!»؛ به نظر میرسد تمام این دورانها و دایره ها، تقریبا به طور همزمان دور خود را کامل میکنند و زمانی که کامل میشوند ـ گمان میکنم حدود هر بیست سال یکبار، ما وارد زمانی میشویم که چیزها را پایان میدهیم. روان شناسان برای بیان این پدیده کلمه ای نیز انتخاب کرده اند، آنها این پدیده را «کلوزر» یا «بستن» نامیده اند. اکنون چهل و دو سال دارم، و به چهار سال گذشته زندگیم که مینگرم، میتوانم همه گونه «بستنی» را ببینم. این امر به اندازه بقیه ی زندگیم، در کارم نیز آشکار است. در کتاب «شی ء» بخش عمده ای از کتاب را به تمام کردن حرفهایم دربار�� بچه ها، و وسعت دیدی که بر زندگی درونیشان پرتو میافکند، اختصاص دادم. قصد دارم سال آینده آخرین رمان مجموعه قلعه سنگی، را منتشر کنم، رمانی به نام «چیزهای مفید». گمان میکنم داستانی که د�� دست دارید آخرین داستانی است که درباره نویسندگان و نویسندگی و دنیای عجیب ناکجا آبادی مینویسم، که بین واقعیت و آنچه باورانده میشود، قرار دارد. گمان میکنم تعداد زیادی از خوانشگران همیشگی کتابهایم که با صبر و حوصله علاقه مرا به این موضوع تحمل کرده اند، از شنیدن این مطلب خوشحال خواهند شد. چند سال پیش رمانی به نام «رنج»، منتشر کردم و در آن تلاش کردم ـ دستکم به طور نسبی نفوذ و تسلطی را نشان دهم که داستانهای تخیلی میتوانند بر خوانشگران داشته باشند. سال گذشته (1990 میلادی) کتاب «نیمه تاریک: را منتشر کردم، تا معکوس آنرا بررسی کنم؛ یعنی تاثیر قدرتمندی که داستان میتواند بر نویسنده اش داشته باشد. زمانی که داستان را مینوشتم کم کم به این فکر افتادم که شاید با نگریستن به عناصر داستانی طرح «نیمه تاریک» از زاویه ای متفاوت، بتوان هر دو گونه داستان را به طور هم زمان در قالب یک داستان بیان کرد. به گمان من نویسندگی و نگارش، عملی سرّی و پنهان است ـ درست به اندازه خواب دیدن ـ و این جنبه ای از این حرفه ی عجیب و خطرناک است؛ جنبه ای که هرگز به آن فکر نکرده بودم. میدانستم که نویسندگان گهگاه، در کارهای قدیمی خود تجدید نظر میکنند ـ جان فاولس این کار را با کتاب «د مجوس» کرد و من هم با کتاب «د استند» خود کرده ام ـ اما من قصد تجدید نظر و بازنویسی نداشتم. آن چه میخواستم انجام دهم، گرفتن عناصر داستانی آشنا و قرار دادن آنها در کنار یکدیگر به گونه ای کاملاً تازه بود. در گذشته یکبار تلاش کرده بودم این کار را انجام دهم: بازسازی ساختار و امروزین کردن عناصر داستانی دراکولای برام استوکر برای پدید آوردن رمان «سیلمز لات»؛ و من آن زمان با این فکر بسیار راحت بودم. روزی در پاییز سال 1987 میلادی، زمانیکه این افکار ذهنم را پر کرده بود، به اتاق رختشویی خانه رفتم تا پیراهنی چرک را به داخل ماشین لباس شوی�� بیندازم. اتاق رختشویی ما، انباری باریک و کوچک در طبقه دوم است. پیراهن را آنجا گذاشتم و به کنار یکی از دو پنجره ی اتاق رفتم. این فقط کنجکاوی عادی بود، نه بیشتر. یازده یا دوازده سال بود که در آن خانه زندگی میکردیم، اما من هرگز با جدیت و دقت از این پنجره به بیرون نگاه نکرده بودم. علت این امر بسیار ساده است؛ پنجره که از کف اتاق شروع میشد تقریبا در پشت دستگاه خشک کن و سبدهای بزرگ لباس پنهان بود و از آن به بیرون نگاه کردن کمی مشکل بود. با وجود این به میان آنها رفتم و به بیرون نگاه کردم. پنجره مشرف بود بر پیاده رویی آجرپوش که بین خانه و ایوانی آفتابگیر قرار داشت. من تقریبا هر روز آن قسمت از خانه را میدیدم، اما زاویه دیدم جدید شده بود. همسرم نیم دوجین گلدان آنجا گذاشته بود تا گیاهان از نور خورشید پاییزی ماه نوامبر استفاده کنند؛ و نتیجه باغچه ی کوچک زیبایی بود که فقط من میتوانستم ببینم. جمله ای که در آن لحظه به ذهنم رسید، نام داستانی است که اکنون در دست دارید. گمان میکنم این استعاره و مفهوم مجازی خوبی است برای نشان دادن کاری که نویسندگان در روزها و شبهاشان انجام میدهند؛ به ویژه نویسندگان داستانهای تخیلی. نشستن پشت دستگاه تحریر یا برداشتن مواد، عملی فیزیکی و جسمانی است؛ تمثیل قیاسی و روحی این امر نگریستن به بیرون از پنجره و منظری فراموش شده است؛ پنجره ای که دیدی جدید از زاویه ای متفاوت به انسان میبخشد؛ زاویه ای که دیدی خارق العاده و غیرعادی ایجاد میکند. وظیفه نویسنده این است که از آن پنجره به بیرون بنگرد و آنچه را میبیند، گزارش کند. اما گاهی پنجره ها میشکنند. گمان میکنم بیش از هر چیز، همین مسئله موضوع این رمان است: زمانیکه پنجره ی بین واقعیت و غیرواقعیت میشکند و شیشه به همه سو پرتاب میشود، آنگاه برای مشاهده گر کنجکاو که با چشمان گشاد همه چیز را تماشا میکند، چه اتفاقی میافتد؟»؛ پایان نقل. ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Kostas Papadatos.
51 reviews21 followers
November 20, 2016
Μισώ τα αεροπλάνα, αλήθεια τα μισώ πολύ. Προτιμώ να κλειστώ σε έναν υπόνομο και να τρώω κλαδιά και μούρα μέχρι τα βαθιά γεράματα παρά να επιβιβαστώ σε κάποιο από αυτά τα ιπτάμενα διαβολοαντικείμενα. Αδέλφια Ράιτ…σας ψάχνω. Αν ήταν στο χέρι μου, οι μετακινήσεις θα πραγματοποιούνταν ακόμα με γαϊδουράκια και θα έκανα τα πάντα να σαμποτάρω την εφεύρεση του τροχού.
Το βιβλίο λοιπόν ξύπνησε τους χειρότερους εφιάλτες μου, δεν φτάνει που εξαφανίστηκαν ως δια μαγείας οι περισσότεροι επιβάτες της πτήσης, δεν φτάνει που εξαφανίστηκε και ο πιλότος ανάμεσα σε αυτούς (νταξ), αλλά δημιουργήθηκε και μια ρωγμή στο χρόνο που έχει φέρει τα πάνω κάτω στον κόσμο όπως τον γνωρίζουμε γενικότερα. Ρε King? To τερμάτισες, γιατί δεν έβαζες και έναν καμικάζι αυτοκτονίας μέσα? Πως σου ξέφυγε? Το θέμα του βιβλίου? Πρωτότυπο, δεδομένου βέβαια και της εποχής που εκδόθηκε, όπου ο κόσμος διψούσε για sci-fi θεάματα.
Οι ήρωες μας? Όλων των ειδών, ο νταής, ο κρυψίνους, ο από μηχανής θεός, ο αδιάφορος , η << i see dead people>>, ο ουδεμία σχέση έχω με την υπόθεση και φυσικά ο μαλάκας της παρέας. Η πλοκή? Απρόβλεπτη, από την πρώτη μέχρι την τελευταία σελίδα δεν γνωρίζεις τι και πως. Κλασικός King. Ότι πρέπει για τις γιορτές.

Υ.Γ. Η ιδέα μου ή η σειρά Lost είναι η τραβηγμένη από τα μαλλιά εκδοχή, της Νυχτερινής Πτήσης?
Profile Image for Helga.
959 reviews149 followers
August 17, 2023

It was about time to read something that wasn’t Nabokov, Beckett or Ernaux.

I had watched the miniseries The Langoliers (1995) many years ago, so I knew what the book was about, but still it managed to chill my blood, but in a good way, which is the specialty of Stephen King and no one else!

Imagine falling asleep on an airplane only to wake up and encounter an empty cabin; all the passengers except a few have vanished, leaving their belongings behind.
Imagine looking down through the airplane windows and see darkness where a city’s lights should be seen.
That is what happened to the plane and the ten passengers in the story.
Where are all the other passengers? Why did they vanish?

Special thanks to Chris for suggesting I listen to the audio book version narrated by Willem Dafoe! It was a treat!
Profile Image for Jason.
16 reviews
August 26, 2023
I read this novella not knowing anything about it before going in, and that was the way to do it. I thought it was so riveting and had so much mystery to unfurl.

All the characters were unique and despite the book being 233 pages at the end I felt like I knew them in a fully developed novel. Dinah had an interesting arc and I did predict how her and Craig's plot would play out; it was still interesting to see and very much deserved. I believe these characters will all remain very close after all the catharsis. It's like a found family story: I really love how it wound up.

At first the Langoliers seemed a little silly looking based off their descriptions but all told in this alternate reality what's the rules saying they can't look and behave like that. It grew on me.

I also found the idea of traveling back in time and watching the langoliers eat the past world and watching it crumble around them and turn to darkness to be interesting. I never thought the past could still exist just to be destroyed by an entity but in another realm its still there waiting to be deleted.

I do have 2 issues with the novella which kept me from giving it a 5/5

How did Albert know about increasing the pressure in the plane so they all passed out? He's 17 and obviously not a pilot so how did he come up with this idea but the actual pilot didn't?

Also I know using Craig Toomey as bait for The Langoliers was Dinah's plan but if I were one of those other passengers that fool would have been dead the first time. He never would have gotten another change to damage the party with how blatantly psychotic as he was.
Profile Image for Erin Clemence.
1,107 reviews323 followers
July 9, 2021
On a red eye flight from Los Angeles to Boston, ten passengers awaken mid-flight and discover that everyone else on their plane has completely disappeared, leaving only their identifications and various pieces of abandoned jewelry behind. Luckily, there is a pilot left among the leftover passengers, but he discovers something even more sinister- there appears to be nothing left on the ground either; it seems as if the entire world is being swallowed up below them. Cranky passenger Craig Toomey believes they are falling prey to the “Langoliers”, a creature that haunted his childhood that feasts on the “lazy” and “unproductive” of society. The remaining passengers all have different ideas on what has happened and what they should do next, and they all must avoid turning on each other as they face an unusual foe.

Stephen King’s “The Langoliers” was originally published as part of a collection in the 1990s, and was recently published in 2019 as its own delightful story.

There are a lot of characters in this novel, with similar names and personalities, they are initially hard to differentiate (Brian, the pilot and Bob, the author, are just two). But as the ten remaining passengers develop, they form their own personalities and, as is prevalent in King’s novels, some are extremely likable, and there are those that are very much less so.

The Langoliers are a creepy, round-shaped entity that demolish land, buildings and people alike, destroying anything in its way and turning it into a vast emptiness. What started as a creepy story told to Craig by his demanding father, comes to life in the scariest of ways, in pure King fashion. For the majority of the novel there are merely hinted at, described as crunching, static-type noises in the background, and they only make their appearance toward the very end of the novel, heightening the suspense to its very peak.

I prefer King’s original, 1990s era novels, right when he was hitting his stride, to some of his newer novels (although I am a huge King fan either way) and “The Langoliers” is exactly the kind of King novel I love. As it was initially published as part of a collection, it isn’t massively thick, making it completely readable.

Great characters, suspenseful storytelling, and eerie “things that go bump in the night” are pure King, and this novel is downright scary enjoyment from page one.
Profile Image for AziaMinor.
469 reviews58 followers
January 5, 2022
Overall Rating : A+

“He remembered a pilot telling him once, 'They pay us a hundred thousand dollars or more a year, Brian, and they really do it for just one reason. They know that in almost every pilot's career, there are thirty or forty seconds when he might actually make a difference. They pay us not to freeze when those seconds finally come.”

You know, for a time I was one of those people who heard everyone raving about Stephen King and think, "Is he really that good?", and "Surely people are exaggerating." and, "I don't think his books are for me I'll never read them.". Now here I am, loving the few books I have read and bashing myself on the head for ever doubting.

This book was so intense, so terrifying in a freezing way(if that makes sense), that I felt like I was part of the crew experiencing it with them. You relate so much to all of the characters, admire and judge and horrified by them as well, and it makes you really what exactly they are experiencing.

And that ending - "chef's kiss" - it made me experience a higher plan of living. Nothing I can think of can compare it was amazing. It really puts a lot of things in perpective and I never would've imagine a book less than 300 pages doing that.

Also, if I see anybody ripping up pieces of paper like this, I'm going in the opposite direction. XD
Profile Image for Trudi.
615 reviews1,454 followers
January 8, 2012

Over the years this has remained one of my favorite pieces of King's writing. In a phrase, IT IS AWESOME. The first time you read it there is so much mystery, tension, what the bleep mindfuck going on that it literally keeps you on the edge of your seat. As a science fiction story, I proclaim it a classic.

You really want to come to this novella completely blind, because the reveals are so rewarding you don't want to be robbed of them early. But I have discovered upon subsequent re-reads (and now my first "listen") that the story has legs no matter what you know or don't know when you begin it. As with The Long Walk, there are rewards every single time I read this story.

This isn't King at his most emotional or epic -- this is King at his most cut-throat, imaginative storytelling best. He is having delirious fun taking a group of people and putting them in an unknowable, impossible situation. He has created a locked room mystery -- a puzzle -- with a very real and logical solution, but I bet you five dollars he'll keep you guessing to the very end!!

This story is such kick-ass, high-octane energy you will fly through the pages and come out the end grinning like a monkey. I just love it.

[A word on the reader: Willem Defoe is pretty awesome except for the voice he uses when speaking for Bethany. Ahhhhh! Nails on a chalkboard. He makes her sound like an 80 year old Fran Drescher who's smoked and drank whiskey her whole life!]
Profile Image for Nikoleta.
693 reviews274 followers
December 17, 2015
Τα ταξίδια στον χρόνο είναι ένα θέμα το οποίο με συναρπάζει. Έχω δει αμέτρητες ταινίες και έχω διαβάσει πολλά βιβλία. Όλα πάνω κάτω έχουν την ίδια άποψη επί του θέματος. Όσον αφορά το παρελθόν το μόνο που αλλάζει είναι το αν μπορείς ή όχι να αλλάξεις την ιστορία και αν ότι κάνεις σε ένα ταξίδι σου θα έχει επίπτωση στο παρόν. Φίλε όμως όχι! Ο Stephen King σιγά μην έμενε εκεί! Πριιιιτς! Δημιουύργησε μια σχισμή στο χρόνο, πέρασε τους ήρωες του απο εκει και ιδού! Έχουν βρεθεί σε μια νεκρή παγωμένη στιγμή στο παρελθόν, που τα πάντα έχουν παλιώσει κ τίποτα δεν λειτουργεί, ούτε ο αέρας, ούτε καν ο ήχος δεν ταξιδεύει! Μια νεκρή παγωμένη στιγμή που περιμένει να γίνει απλώς το… «τίποτα». Γουαου! Τι σημασία έχει να περιγράψω το ύφος ή την αφήγηση ή τους χαρακτήρες; (Αν κ όλα ήταν μια χαρά. Δράση αγωνιά, χωρίς περιττά σχόλια και περιγραφές.) Stephen King μας άφησες *&^%$#@! Πολύ καλό!!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Richard Dominguez.
874 reviews104 followers
September 30, 2020
While not one of my favorite of King's work, The Langoliers is a well paced story. It's real gift is in the character development. They start out like a dozen or so people we all know in our lives. As the circumstances become clearer we see each transform into their better and worse selves. As for round creatures with super sharp rotating teeth, whose purpose is to eat the past. All I can say is heck why not, it's a King story after all.
Profile Image for Φίλιππος ²³.
324 reviews35 followers
August 31, 2021
Από τα καλά του Κινγκ, και όλως περιέργως χωρίς πολλή από την κλασική του φλυαρία!!! Σε κρατάει σε αγωνία μέχρι το τέλος! Απολαυστικό!
Profile Image for Jake.
326 reviews25 followers
September 19, 2013
You remember that first time as an adult when you watched an old Hanna-Barbera cartoon that you loved as a kid and you almost choked to death from hoarking up some stomach acid because you just discovered that you spent like 12 years of your life being a total dumbfuck?

That's The Langoliers.

I loved The Langoliers when I was a kid. And even today, creepy airplane stories just do it for me. So, with fall happening, this seemed like a perfect time to revisit a story I've loved for 20 years, but haven't read for a second time. If Lango still hit my shiver-button, my plan was to take a two-month journey down Joe Hill's Daddy's Memory Lane. So far, so THHHHHBBBBTTTTT.

Man, this was disappointing. The first third is still sufficiently creepy, with Stevie Boy adequately expressing the dread that comes with waking up on a plane to nowhere and finding most of your fellow passengers vaporized. As long as the characters remain confused and scared, so does the reader. The problem, and this is a factor in damn near every King story I've read over the last 15 years, is that EVENTUALLY, shit has to make some sense. WHOOPS. Explanation isn't one of Uncle Stevie's strengths.

But we kind of know that going in, right? So I was willing to accept a certain level of WHAT THE FUCK JUST HAPPENED?-ness at the end of this. Which, obviously, happened because STEPHEN KING. Whatever.

No, the big problem I had with this was that the characters are just sooooo precious. They all have their signature quirk, and they all have this uncanny ability to connect dots when there isn't even an obvious puzzle before them. It's pretty irritating. Dammit, Stevie, why you gotta break my heart so bad?

Oh well. On to Salem's Lot, I guess.

Profile Image for Μπάμπης M..
125 reviews10 followers
September 17, 2020
9/10. Από τα καλά του King. Το συστήνω σε κάθε βιβλιόφιλο που αρέσκεται στο μυστήριο,αγωνιά, επιστημονική φαντασία και τρόμο. Δεν θέλω να πω άλλα μην σποιλάρω...Διαβάστε το!
72 reviews5 followers
September 9, 2016
Δεν φοβάμαι τα αεροπλάνα, αντιθέτως μου αρέσει πολύ να ταξιδεύω με αυτά. Σε αντίθεση με τον συγγραφέα που το έχει δηλώσει ότι τα τρέμει. Και σε αυτό το βιβλίο φαίνεται μάλλον γιατί τα φοβάται.Είναι ένα βιβλίο θρίλερ επιστημονικής φαντασίας, που αυτοί που φοβούνται ήδη τα αεροπλάνα θα δικαιωθούν. Αναφέρεται σε μια συγκεκριμένη πτήση την 29 που ταξιδεύει από το Λος Άντζελες για Βοστώνη και στην πορεία του συμβαίνουν απίστευτα πράγματα. Τα πιο απίστευτα όμως συμβαίνουν αφού προσγειωθούν, οι εναπομείναντες επιβάτες, σε έναν έρημο κόσμο και έρχονται αντιμέτωποι με τους Λανγκολιέρους. Τι είναι οι Λανγκολιέροι και που θα φτάσουν κι αν φτάσουν στον προορισμό τους οι επιβάτες, θα το ανακαλύψετε αφού το διαβάσετε. Περιττό βέβαια να σας πω ότι μου άρεσε πάρα πολύ.

Profile Image for Gorgona Grim.
98 reviews93 followers
June 20, 2017
Kada razmišljam o tome da li se plagijatori susreću sa osećajem krivice i moralnim sukobom unutar sebe, nadam se da to izgleda upravo ovako kako to doživljava Mort. Možda zlonamerno sa moje strane, ali karma je kučka. Sviđa mi se kako je priča napisana i što za promenu imamo dostojan kraj priče, potpuno atipično za Kinga, poznatog po nedorečenim krajevima čija je pretenzija da čitalac sam izvodi zaključke i priču zvršava prema ličnim idejama i afinitetima.

Pratimo Morta i njegov život koji se menja u svega nedelju dana. Promena je započeta znatno ranije, onda kada ga je žena prevarila sa drugim čovekom, a on ih je zatekao u postelji. Morta zatičemo u kući, osamljenog, a na vrata mu zvoni nepoznati čovek, tvrdeći da je Mort ukrao njegovu priču. Mort momentalno odbacuje takav scenario, ali neznanac je uporan, dok Morta kopkaju nedoumice - ko je taj čovek koji mu je doneo identičnu priču kao njegovu i kako dokazati da priču nije plagirao? Vrlo brzo shvata da neznanac, John Shooter, zapravo zna mnogo više o njemu nego što je Mort mogao da pretpostavi.

Obrti su zapravo odlični iako se rasplet mogao nazreti negde od sredine. Međutim, događaji se brzo nižu i radnja je celovita. Psihološki sklop likova je dočaran prilično autentično. Svakako preporuka za čitanje.
Profile Image for Maria Cecília.
Author 7 books33 followers
May 30, 2021
Stephen King consegue prender-nos até ao fim. Sempre surpreendente!
Profile Image for Dave DelFavero.
77 reviews36 followers
August 10, 2021
What can I say other than I’ve been a huge fan of the Langoliers since it first premiered on television screens in homes back in 1995. I was already a fan of David Morse, of course, and loved that he was chosen to play the pilot for this Stephen King adaptation.The role fit him perfectly!
I never actually read the novella before, though but I’m so glad I did. Although the film adaptation stays pretty consistent with the novella I still appreciated reading it this time around. Of course, I envisioned the actors in my head as I read it. I thought they were perfectly casted. The special effects, however, could do with some repolishing but it’s still fine.

I’ve always been pulled into good mysteries such as “Twilight Zone”. Time warps, time rips, going back in the past or into the future. Are they alive or are they dead… things like that. That’s why The Langoliers has always been a favorite of mine. I couldn’t recommend this one enough if you also are into time and space conundrums.

5/5 ⭐️
Profile Image for Marts  (Thinker).
2,668 reviews
December 8, 2008
Hey, this is one of those Stephen King books that I could just read over and over, and hey, I haven't said anything about the movie as yet, I've actually seen it about 5 times.
Imagine that a guy who's entire life is built on a fear of an imaginary thing!!
Profile Image for Paul.
177 reviews59 followers
February 3, 2018
Very well written. Has mystery wrapped up in elements of Horror and Even a little romance.
Profile Image for Getalocalife.
56 reviews18 followers
April 29, 2021
Δεύτερο βιβλίο του King για φέτος και γενικότερα καθώς δεν είχα ποτέ πριν καταπιαστεί με το συγγραφικό του έργο.
Η Νυχτερινή πτήση διαβάζεται απνευστί και για μένα αυτό ήταν ένα παράδοξο καθώς δεν είναι fan των βιβλίων φαντασίας και δη των sci-fi.
Βρήκα πολύ έξυπνη την ιστορία και οι χαρακτήρες μου άρεσαν πολύ ιδιαίτερα ο Νικ.
Η ατμόσφαιρα από ένα σημείο και μετά ναι γίνεται πιο σκοτεινή και αρχικά δε υπάρχει κάτι πραγματικά τρομαχτικό.Παρ'ολα αυτά ο King χτίζει σταδιακά μια σκοτεινή ατμόσφαιρα με τη μικρή, τυφλή Νταϊάνα και τα μεταφυσικά της ένστικτα,τις λωρίδες που σκίζει ασταμάτητα ο Τούμι και τον ήχο των πλασμάτων των Λαγκολάριων που τους κυνηγούν.
Το βιβλίο δεν είναι πολύ μεγάλο, γύρω στις 300 σελίδες οπότε το συστήνω για κάποιον που θέλει να κάνει ένα ξεκίνημα στο κόσμο του συγγραφέα.
Profile Image for Dreamer  .
144 reviews1 follower
December 18, 2022
Still not sure for this book.. It's like.. It was not good. Not bad. Something in between. Just okay, I guess. Since I have already read Two Past Midnight: Secret Window, Secret Garden, and loved it, I expected something much more by Stephen King. But no, it didn't work.

To begin with, I want to make clear from now, that I actually liked the story, the main idea, and some of the characters, but it just seemed to me that there were wayyy to many plot holes, or - to be more acurate - unexplained facts. While I was reading the book, I thought that everything would be clear till the ending, but here I am, having finished the book, and still can't make sense. I don't know if I'm just stupid and don't undertsand, or if there are ,indeed, plot holes, but for some reason something didn't feel very right.

Here are my unanswered questions, after having finished the book:

So, these were the technical questions.. But also I want to point out some things that annoyed me a little.

So, yeah, that's my review I guess. Hope you liked it. If you have read the book, you can write your opinion (or your theories) in the comments :)
Profile Image for Ron Sami.
Author 3 books82 followers
September 14, 2021
A very interesting book with unpredictable events. But its annotation needs to be removed.

Plot. Rating 5
Although events from the past of the characters are sometimes wedged into the plot, they did not bother me, since the plot developed dynamically. It has difficult puzzles that twist the plot. The feeling of the growing threat is perfectly conveyed. The behavior of the characters also brings a surprise to the plot. At first, one plot twist is shocking because of this, then another. The book is full of drama in the second part among other things. The plot of the book keeps you in suspense until the very end - the characters overcome many obstacles.
However, I think the love line was unnecessary in this book or needed to be spelled out in more detail. In general, I believe that the volume of the book is too small to cover such a large topic and the many events that take place.

Characters. Rating 5
There are eleven characters in the book, not counting episodic characters that do not affect the plot. These eleven people are shown excellently. They differ in appearance, features, goals that keep them in the book, as well as their behavior in an extreme situation. The bearded passenger with a hangover seems to me to have taken the most advantageous position in the book. His thoughtful strategy, as well as steely endurance in the short break between his correct actions, were very impressive.

Dialogues. Rating 4
In the dialogues, the plot develops, as the characters actively discuss the oddities happening to them and their quest for a way out of their terrible situation. The dialogues are good enough; they convey a variety of riddles and conflicts. Although, I would not say that I liked them extremely.

Writing style. Rating 4
The writing style gives a clear idea of everything while avoiding lengthy descriptions.

Worldbuilding. Rating 5
Amazing worldbuilding, arguably one of Stephen King's best.

Conclusion. Overall rating 5
An extremely eventful book with an original fantastic idea. Science fiction, drama, horror, humor, and a love affair are all present.
Profile Image for Yvonne (go.for.a.walk.chuma).
320 reviews5 followers
June 23, 2021
Zweimal spannende, düstere Unterhaltung

»Langoliers« ist eine von 4 Novellen, die in »Vier nach Mitternacht« veröffentlicht wurden. Zuvor war es auch der Titel des ersten Teils der deutschen Übersetzung und enthielt neben »Langoliers« noch »Das heimliche Fenster, der heimliche Garten«. Der zweite Band der Veröffentlichung hieß »Nachts«.

Eine Passagiermaschine gerät auf dem Flug von LA nach Boston in einen Zeitriss und alle Menschen an Bord, die währenddessen nicht tief geschlafen haben, verschwinden spurlos. Für die kleine Gruppe »Überlebender« beginnt nach dem Erwachen der wahre Albtraum. »Langoliers« ist also eine etwas andere Zeitreisegeschichte, wenn man so will, denn King legt hier seine ganz eigene Theorie der linearen Zeit dar. Das liest sich spannend und ist zudem extrem unterhaltsam. Abgesehen davon glänzt King einmal mehr mit einem Händchen für starke Charaktere, die trotz der Kürze der Geschichte wunderbar ausgearbeitet wurden.

Fazit »Langoliers«
Spannende Unterhaltung mit tollen Figuren und einer sehr interessanten und ungewöhnlichen Theorie von Zeit und Raum. ⭐︎⭐︎⭐︎⭐︎⭐︎

»Das heimliche Fenster, der heimliche Garten« ist die zweite Kurzgeschichte in diesem Band und ist nicht weniger spannend. Im Ton ist sie düsterer, gleicht ein wenig einem Kammerspiel und erinnerte mich an »Stark – The Dark Half«, was King selbst im Vorwort auch zur Sprache bringt. Einmal mehr greift der Meister das Thema Schriftsteller in Lebenskrise mit Schreibblockade auf. Doch die Richtung, in die er hier steuert, ist dann doch ein wenig anders als erwartet.

Der Schriftsteller Mort Rainey hat schon bessere Tage erlebt. Er lebt in Scheidung und bringt kein vernünftiges Wort mehr zu Papier. Und ausgerechnet jetzt erscheint ein Fremder vor seiner Tür und beschuldigt ihn, seine Geschichte gestohlen und veröffentlicht zu haben. Mort ist sich keiner Schuld bewusst und ignoriert das Ganze zunächst, doch der mysteriöse Fremde, den niemand sonst gesehen haben will, bedroht ihn immer massiver und geht dabei buchstäblich über Leichen. Es ist also an der Zeit, sich den Vorwürfen zu stellen und die Sache ein für alle Mal zu begraben.

Fazit »Das heimliche Fenster, der heimliche Garten«
Einmal mehr liefert King spannende Unterhaltung auf Psychothriller-Niveau. Der Leser findet sich unverhofft in einer tödlichen Spirale des dunklen Wahnsinns wieder, aus der es kein Entkommen zu geben scheint.
Profile Image for rovic.
191 reviews63 followers
November 22, 2020
There is just something about King's writing that is haunting and gripping. He did a great job in building the whole story: the atmosphere, the characters (as always, he knows how to write good main and background characters), the mystery; it's amazing.

It's the first novella off his horror story collection: Four Past Midnight, and I just can't recommend this enough. It is a great mix of horror, mystery, and science-fiction.

Now, I really think the story is great; I mean, it's amazingly-written. But, there is just one important thing/scene that made me scream: "Y'ALL ARE SO DUMB!!" (if you read this, you know what I mean). Thankfully, it ended well and I love how it speaks the metaphor of being reborn; of getting a new start.
Profile Image for Anna.
270 reviews91 followers
October 27, 2018
Loved this -- very much in line with King's stuff from the '80s. Not everything was explained with the "time rip" and other fantasy time travelling elements of the narrative, but the story had a nice satisfying ending because the characters are so well written and the action is well paced. Eager to see what comes next in "Four Past Midnight."
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