OK, I know that the release date for this product has nothing to do with anything whatsoever. It's a total coincidence that this audio book happened to be released on June 17, 1999, and two days later, on June 19, 1999, a car ran into Stephen King and he suffered very serious injuries. It's just that this date is so significant for Stephen King fans, especially for those of us who have read "The Dark Tower"...
So, how about the audio book itself? What can be said about it?
The version that is sold on cassette consists of two tapes. The first cassette contains Stephen King reading his short story "LT's Theory of Pets", while the second one is a recording of a question-and-answer session with Muriel Gray as the questioner. Both were recorded before a live audience at London's Royal Festival Hall in August 1998.
"LT's Theory of Pets" is also available as a separate audio book (CD, cassette and audio download), and is included in the print version (but not the audio version) of the short story collection "Everything's Eventual". I've reviewed this story on it's own. My conclusion was, "Nice little story with a disappointing ending", and I gave it only three stars.
The question-and-answer session is much better, even though it only lasts 39 minutes. Stephen King fans will really enjoy hearing Mr. King fielding the various questions, and he seems to be in high spirits and makes many amusing remarks. But he also answers the more serious questions, and you feel that you've gotten to know the person whose books you love a bit better.
The questions covered many subjects. Here's an almost-complete list: Discussion of "Bag of Bones", quitting while you're still on top, future projects, "The Dark Tower" series (last three volumes remaining), writer's block, does he get scared by his own writing, favorite film adaptations, "The Shining" movie, cricket (the game), has he finally discovered sex, being honest as a writer, eye problems, and is there an afterlife?
Because the interview took place in August 1998 it is a bit dated, but this can also be interesting in retrospect. I was especially glad to hear Mr. King tell how important it was for him to complete "The Dark Tower" series.
Even though I really enjoyed listening to the question-and-answer session I'm only awarding four stars to the whole product. This is mostly due to the short length of the second tape. You're paying a lot of money for a short story that isn't all that great and only 39 minutes of "the good stuff".
Incidentally, one slightly irritating thing about the question-and-answer session is that the interviewer, Ms. Gray, has a very high-pitched laugh, and she was really enjoying herself and laughing a lot and laughing very loudly that evening. Quite a contrast to Stephen King's low-pitched New England accent.
If you would prefer to read the interview in print then instead of getting this audio book you should get "Secret Windows", a collection of many articles and short stories by Stephen King. That book includes a transcript of this interview, even though it doesn't mention it on the listing here at Amazon. ("LT's Theory of Pets" is not included in that collection, but it's in "Everything's Eventual".)
My recommendation? If you're a Stephen King fan then try to buy a used copy of this audio book at a reasonable price. You'll enjoy hearing Mr. King talk about, well everything.