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Ring [Hardcover]

Koji Suzuki , Robert B. Rohmer , Glynne Walley
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)

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Book Description

7 Jun 2004

Stunning, cutting-edge thriller with a chilling supernatural twist from Japan’s stylish new literary star.

Asakawa is a hardworking journalist who has climbed his way up from local-news beat reporter to writer for his newspaper’s weekly magazine. A chronic workaholic, he doesn’t take much notice when his seventeen-year-old niece dies suddenly – until a chance conversation reveals that another healthy teenager died at exactly the same time, in chillingly similar circumstances.

Sensing a story, Asakawa begins to investigate, and soon discovers that this strange simultaneous sudden-death syndrome also affected another two teenagers. Exactly one week before their mysterious deaths the four teenagers all spent the night at a leisure resort in the same log cabin.

When Asakawa visits the resort, the mystery only deepens. A comment made in the guest book by one of the teenagers leads him to a particular videotape. When he watches it, instead of a movie he finds an odd collection of disparate images with a portentous message at the end: Those who have viewed these images are fated to die at this exact hour one week from now.

Asakawa finds himself in a race against time – he has only seven days to find the cause of the teenagers’ deaths before it finds him. The hunt puts him on the trail of an apocalyptic power that will force Asakawa to choose between saving his family and saving civilization.


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1st Edition edition (7 Jun 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007178840
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007178841
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 552,655 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

‘The pace doesn't slacken for a moment … a guaranteed page-turner’ Observer

‘Suzuki builds tension brilliantly’ Guardian

‘Bristles with menace and fear’ Uncut

‘The translation is wonderful, the spare and sleek prose making for an easy read, while the dark currents of the story build up to a mind-boggling climax’ Outland

Book Description

Doomed to die. One way out. One week to find it.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
This is a translation of the book which led to two sequel books, short stories, more than four films in Japan, several films through asia and recently a US remake. The original tale has been altered and mutated with each new version creating several different stories. the one thing that every version has in common is this book.
'Ring' is the story of Asakawa, a journalist, who investigates the sudden, inexplicable death of his niece after discovering that three other teenagers died just as mysteriously at precisely the same time. The only link between them is the video they all watched one week earlier.
I enjoyed the book very much and, as a fan of the story as told in film, found it very interesting. However anyone buying the book because they enjoyed the films should know that the book has a very different feel than the films and some of the best moments in the films are nowhere to be found in the book. This said the book gives you a much fuller view of the story and gives real depth to the characters. The translation is very good and captures some of the atmosphere of the tale but, in my opinion, like many translated books, lacks flair.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Riveting stuff... 2 Jan 2007
Format:Paperback
Whilst investigating the sudden and suspicious death of his niece and her three teenage friends, a newspaper reporter invokes a curse that will kill him in seven days. There is a way to disarm the curse, but he does not know what it is. Doh! Enlisting the aid of an old school friend with an interest in the supernatural, they frantically travel around Japan attempting to find the solution. The clock is ticking...

The suspense levels in this book grew nicely for me, as each day passed and the lead characters seemed to be no nearer solving the riddle. Certainly an original idea, I do not think you will guess the outcome of this one (unless you have been told beforehand, or seen the film). I am now hooked onto the trilogy, and looking forwarding to re-engaging with the curse in 'Spiral'.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy this! 27 May 2004
Format:Hardcover
I've waited months to find a copy of this book, after becoming a huge fan of the original Japanese films. When my copy finally arrived, it was even better than I'd expected.
To anyone who's a fan of the original Japanese films, I'd recommend the book. The films are very true to the book, but there is also a lot in the book that isn't included in the film series (e.g. the fact that in the book, Asakawa is male...). It's an excellent read, and a must-have for any Ring fan especially, but I'd recommend it to anyone.
Don't go straight for the book if you've only seen the American film. The book is not at all similar, so it could be a bit hard to understand. I recommend watching atleast the original "Ringu" first. I myself watched all of the films before reading the book, and it made it much easier to read, and more enjoyable. What can I say... I'm just a huge Ring fan!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than the films 14 Feb 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
I purchased this ebook expecting a good but scare free story. Was I wrong.
Ring is the story of a cursed video tape that after watching gives you one week before death. Asakawa watches this tape shortly after discovering the deaths of four teenagers who had watched the video. What follows is a week of investigation and discovery.
The story is much the same as the films with several major differences and includes a lot more explanation than the movies. The largest difference is the main protagonist who is now a man instead of the woman in both American and Japanese films, I can't say whether this is better or worse but it is definitely a different take.
Was it scary? In places there is a terrible feeling of dread that only your imagination can create, unlike the movie where you are open to someone elses interpretation. I would say the best way to read this is in the dark with only a reading light for maximum effect.
This book also incorporates (although in a slightly different way) the story that is told in 'Ring 0' of Sadako's origins.
I would definitely recommend this to anyone who enjoyed the 'Ring' and 'The Ring' films and anyone who is a fan of horror in general.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
Having seen all the film versions of this story, I must agree that the source material is most definately the best place to hear it.

It is harrowing, chilling, thrilling, perplexing and thought provoking. So much about this book stirs you inside, churns you round and spits you out again.

If you have not seen the films, get this book. If you have seen the films, get this book. If you don't care about the films, STILL get this book. You will not be dissapointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A different style of thriller 30 Mar 2006
Format:Paperback
This book has lots of positive things going for it. The story seems to have a Japanese legend background. The actual story is a lot better than the traditional 'poltergeist' type rubbish. Suzuki has a real gift for creating suspense.
However, the book does lose something in it's translation and is littered with Americanisms but dont let that put you off.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars First you see the Ring 13 Mar 2006
By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Koji Suzuki could easily be considered the Stephen King of Japanese horror, with several movies (and remakes) of his bestseller novels -- particularly "Ring." Yes, that one. The one where you die in a week after seeing the cursed tape. While not quite the same as either film, Suzuki's original novel is a quiet, understated horror classic.
Four teenagers watch a seemingly cursed videotape, which will kill them in one week's time. Seven days later, all four die of heart attacks, including one young man simply keeling off his motorcycle. The uncle of one girl, Kazuyuki Asakawa, also finds the videotape and watches it. Now he has seven days to figure out the mysterious instructions, which happen to be missing. If he doesn't, he's dead.
Accompanied by a less-than-pristine professor, Ryuji Takayama, Asakawa goes in search of what is going on -- he suspects a virus that causes a heart attack. As he goes hunting through the woods for the secret to the videotape, he discovers a legacy of death and terror, left behind by the malevolent Sadako Yamamura. Asakawa's time is running out -- how can he unravel the mystery of the Ring?
Don't expect a carbon copy of the "Ring" movies: No TV apparitions, the lead is a man, and despite her beautiful female appearance, Sadako is a hermaphrodite. However, the "Ring" book is far more horrifying, solidifying Suzuki's position as a classic horror writer. It's impossible not to shiver when you look at the TV, after seeing this.
Suzuki's skill is in calmly, coolly describing horrific events in simple words. It packs a more visceral punch than if he just had floods of blood and gore in detail. The scene where Takayama sees the curse working on his own body is enough to make your skin crawl.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Old favourite
I've already read it long ago. but it's something atmospheric I'd like to read again.
Forget the American film, too much has been chopped, added and changed. Read more
Published 20 days ago by PT
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
If you've seen the movie you'll enjoy the book. Not really scary, more like a detective novel. I've the other two books from the series waiting to be read so I'm hoping they'll... Read more
Published 1 month ago by frostface
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing!
I really didnt like this book, I wanted to but I just couldnt get into it and found it pretty boring.
Published 2 months ago by Miss Emma
4.0 out of 5 stars A welcome introduction to the Japanese supernatural genre
I gather that `Ring' by Koji Suzuki, here translated by Robert B. Rohmer and Glynne Walley, has a cult following and has spawned Japanese and American films. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Dr R
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as frightening as the film
Good read but the whole premise at the end is a bit too weird and it wasn't as frightening as the film but I think this is because the imagery in the films is so iconic that it was... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Reanie
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
Personally I thought this book was brilliant. The translation is near perfect and doesn't hinder the read. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Elly
5.0 out of 5 stars Good to read source.
Have seen the movies many times and love them. A lot of modern horror can disappoint & image of Sadako crawling from the is iconic. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Shinigami Sam
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
I not much of a horror fan myself so I was reluctant to read this book. As it happens I found it to be a better read than I expected, and definitely a lot better than what I had... Read more
Published 13 months ago by New Horizons
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a bad read
After watching the film that is based on this book I wanted to see if the book was any good.it wasn't bad at all!
Published 15 months ago by Mrs Z M Haines
2.0 out of 5 stars A Pale View of Hills
This is the original book story of the famous Japanese and later American remake films 'The Ring'. It was written in 1991 and reflects the times specifically video taping (VHS), no... Read more
Published on 20 April 2012 by H. Tee
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