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Extended Audio Sample Sometimes a Great Notion Audiobook, by Ken Kesey Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (9,013 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ken Kesey Narrator: Tom Stechschulte Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2012 ISBN: 9781449814540
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The magnificent second novel from the legendary author of One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest and Sailor Song is a wild-spirited and hugely powerful tale of an Oregon logging clan. A bitter strike is raging in a small lumber town along the Oregon coast. Bucking that strike out of sheer cussedness are the Stampers: Henry, the fiercely vital and overpowering patriarch; Hank, the son who has spent his life trying to live up to his father; and Viv, who fell in love with Hank’s exuberant machismo but now finds it wearing thin. And then there is Leland, Henry’s bookish younger son, who returns to his family on a mission of vengeance—and finds himself fulfilling it in ways he never imagined. Out of the Stamper family’s rivalries and betrayals Ken Kesey has crafted a novel with the mythic impact of Greek tragedy.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tina | 2/7/2014

    " Some say that Cuckoo's nest is his best work, but for me, Sometimes a Great Notion is Kesey's best. It is my favorite. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Pamela | 1/20/2014

    " Absolutely incredible book...in my top ten. Don't bother seeing the movie. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Molly Eberhardt | 1/19/2014

    " Hard to get into but once you're past the first hundred pages the characters win you over completely. Wonderful descriptions of the Pacific Northwest, so my rating may be a bit skewed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 John Campbell | 1/15/2014

    " Easily one of the best five books I've ever read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Robert Mooney | 1/15/2014

    " When I first read this book I was captivated by the saga of the Stamper clan. I wanted to run away to the Great North Woods and become a lumberjack. I've reread this book twice. It's one of the best American novels of the 20th century. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Frank Abrams | 1/14/2014

    " Long, winded, wet. Fantastic ending! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Don Gubler | 1/12/2014

    " One for the ages. Independent spirits against nature and entrenched institutions and people. Will the Waconda Agua claim the Stamper house or anything of yours? Never give an inch. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Andrew Koepke | 1/9/2014

    " A riveting account of a rural logging town in the Pacific northwest. Tells the tales of cyclic Oregon weather and one family's struggle to make ends meet even at the expense of neighbors and acquaintances. Also contains subtler themes of adultery, revenge, determination and self-realization. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Paula | 1/6/2014

    " A must read for those who grew up in the Pacific Northwest. It embodies the feel of an Oregon winter. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeff | 12/26/2013

    " The rhythm of this book takes a while to get used to, but once you do it makes perfect sense. An incredible story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kurt Rowland | 12/4/2013

    " Easily one of my top three favorite books! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Caleb | 12/3/2013

    " One of the best books I've ever read. Beautiful prose which captures the essence of Oregon fantastically. Wonderful story line with complex characters you will fall in love with. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sara Hansen | 11/26/2013

    " This sounds really good, but it was hard to get through "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 David Collins | 11/5/2013

    " one of the best books ever "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jason | 9/13/2013

    " This book is a goddamn masterpiece. That is all. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Les Robinson | 12/6/2012

    " This one Tom DID recommend to me. Very good. Great story and wonderful experimenting with form. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Zach | 11/15/2012

    " My Kesey phase ended here. A good book, sometimes a great book, but it's his double in the gap to Cuckoo's game-winning walk-off grand slam. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Drexell | 10/13/2012

    " Required reading for any Oregonian "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mike Maher | 9/18/2012

    " To me this was a better book than Cuckoos Nest and I thought here was a novelist that I could follow for many years. But I found all his subsequent books to be disappointing. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mary | 9/13/2012

    " This book contains one of the most powerful scenes I have ever read. While "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" is the most commonly cited work by Kesey (and, it is deservedly so), this novel is well worth the time as well. Don't want to say anything more - discover it! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brent | 5/5/2012

    " My all-time favorite book. It's been several years since I read it, and I can't wait for the day I read it again. It's not for everyone, but it seems like those able to get past the first 5 pages can't help but adore it! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Wendy | 12/7/2011

    " Among my Top Ten all time favorites. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bmactrot | 12/4/2011

    " My absolute favorite book. The first 100 pages are hard but it is worthit! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alice Delaney | 11/7/2011

    " This book is a large part of my decision to move to Oregon "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kara | 7/17/2011

    " It drove me crazy and I can't stop thinking about it. I think that means that Ken Kesey did something right! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Billymojo | 4/9/2011

    " kesey could have used an editor, but this book remains the quintessential reader for an understanding of the recent past of the Pacific Northwest. I grew up with these people. And his descriptions of the physical environment are lovely, loving and deeply touching. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 April | 3/28/2011

    " Sad fun fact: I read this because James Mercer was. Kesey's good shit. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ed | 3/21/2011

    " My fave of all Kesey's novels. Language as free as the Oregon wilderness. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 M | 2/19/2011

    " I REALLY tried to like this book, the author being one of the most loved locals. But I just didn't. Sorry. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Paul | 2/7/2011

    " The great American novel. Simple as that, really. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bmactrot | 1/31/2011

    " My absolute favorite book. The first 100 pages are hard but it is worthit! "

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About the Author
Author Ken Kesey

Ken Kesey (1935–2002) was born in Colorado and grew up in Oregon. As a young man he exhibited the charisma and imagination that would later make him an icon and one of the founders of the American counterculture. He received a scholarship to attend Stanford University, where he enrolled in the creative writing program. His first book, One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest, was followed by Sometimes a Great Notion. His bus trip from California to New York City with his friends, who called themselves the Merry Pranksters, became the subject of Tom Wolfe’s book The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.

About the Narrator

Tom Stechschulte has narrated well over a hundred audiobooks and has won fifteen AudioFile Earphones Awards. He won the prestigious Audie Award in 2009 and has been a finalist for the Audie in 2005 and 2011. As an actor, he has been seen in eleven Broadway shows as well as numerous television and film shows, including the remake of The Manchurian Candidate.