Stephen King’s books are known for being wide-ranging in genre, excellently written, and a lot of the time, eerie. The best Stephen King audiobooks reflect this, covering many different genres and themes such as supernaturalism, horror, crime, suspense, fantasy, and science-fiction.
If you’re not opposed to eerie settings, creepy characters, and twisted concepts, you’ll love King’s work. His writing is direct, vivid, and accessible, making his complex and psychologically driven plot lines understandable for any reader.
Listening to an audiobook is one of the best ways to enjoy King’s work. Through audio, King’s immersive descriptions bring his worlds to life and the personality of his characters become more animated.
Many have claimed that King’s books are addictive and some fans claimed his stories were so engrossing and compelling that they read the entire book in just one sitting!
If gripping, psychological, creepy books are what you’re in the market for, you’ve come to the right place. So, without further ado, here are the 20 best Stephen King audiobooks for you to sink your teeth into.
The Best Stephen King Audiobooks
The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger
This is the first book in one of King’s most-read series. The Dark Tower introduces Roland of Gilead, the Last Gunslinger, one of King’s most intriguing protagonists.
He is a bit of a loner, roaming the streets that eerily mirror our reality. He embarks on a dangerous journey, tasked with tracking and catching The Man in Black, but along the way, he encounters many different strange and endearing characters.
An 11-year-old boy is found dead and DNA findings point to only one person – Terry Maitland. But Terry is one of the pillars of the community, he’s a loving husband and father, a teacher, and a coach, he’d never commit such an atrocious crime.
After being arrested, the case opens up and the investigation takes another turn. Is Maitland who he says he is? Or has he fooled the whole town? The Outsider presents one of King’s most interesting and captivating protagonists. With frequent plot twists, you’ll never know what’s around the corner.
This is one of the giants in King’s repertoire. Since its release in 1977, The Shining has horrified its readers and rightfully earned its place in the horror wall of fame as one of the scariest classics ever written.
The Shining follows Jack Torrance, as he manages to get a new job working in a hotel, hoping to get some free time during the off-season period to focus on his writing. But cold weather strikes, making the hotel feel even more isolated and a little eerier too. Jack’s wife, Wendy, and 5-year-old son, Danny, become key components in the plot line and the revelation of Danny’s psychic ‘gifts’ marks a sinister turning point in the story’s development.
If you don’t like clowns, please skip this one out. This book centers around an evil clown who lives within Derry’s sewers and hunts the city’s children.
28 years ago, a group of 7 teenagers saw Pennywise for the first time and vowed never to speak of him again. But now, this monster is striking again and the lives of innocent children are at risk. It follows as these 7 (now) adults reunite in Derry to face the memories they’ve tried so hard to repress. But will they get there in time?
Under the Dome
With no warning, a dome falls over the town of Chester’s Mill in Maine. It is cut off from the rest of the world and causes havoc for wildlife and planes navigating the skies.
Under the Dome concentrates on the inhabitants of Chester’s Mill and their desperate attempt to get rid of the dome. Graphic depictions of injuries, emotional pleas of separated families, and heartbreak as residents are separated from their homes are all included in this dystopian novel of desperation.
This eerily realistic post-apocalyptic novel follows the events after a computer error led to the deaths of 99% of the world’s population. Grappling with the concepts of good and evil, the leftover survivors must choose sides.
The Stand has possibly one of the creepiest protagonists in King’s repertoire. Randall Flagg’s creepy smile has stayed with many readers long after they stopped reading. His smile, extraordinary powers, and evil priorities make him a memorable villain and his characterization is reason enough to listen to this novel.
Ben Mears now lives in the eerie mansion that has provoked such awful rumors in Jerusalem’s Lot. He hopes that centering himself in the legend will help to rid himself of his evils.
But when one boy goes missing in the woods, Mears realizes that something bigger lurks in the shadows. The setting is what drives a huge amount of the suspense in Salem’s Lot, so listening to the audio can really help you immerse yourself in the creepiness.
This book won the 2009 Audie Award for fiction, so you know it’s a good one to listen to. Duma Key follows Edgar Freemantle after he endures an awful accident that leaves him with little memory and no right arm. His marriage falls apart soon after and in an attempt to seek a fresh start, he moves to Duma Key, a small part of Florida’s underdeveloped coastline.
This story merges ghostly memories, psychological strain, and the power of art. It follows themes of love, creativity, and trauma and it’s a must-read for those entering the realm of King’s literature.
Misery concentrates on Paul Sheldon, a famous author who experiences a deadly car accident that leaves him helpless on the side of a road in Colorado.
Annie is Paul’s number 1 fan and also his savior. She nurses him back to health, or so Paul thinks. Annie’s true intentions begin to shine and soon, he must endure torture, trapped in the house of an infatuated fan with no limits.
Doctor Sleep is another Audie Award winner and acts as a sequel to his famous novel The Shining.
It hones in on The Shining’s creepy child protagonist Danny Torrence, who, now middle-aged, attempts to save a 12-year-old girl from a cult of paranormals who thrive on torture and murder.
Winner of the 2020 Thriller Audie Award, The Institute is certainly not one to miss out! The story follows Luke Ellis, who, one night, is quietly kidnapped after his parents are murdered.
When Luke regains consciousness, he finds himself in The Institute, a building designated for kids with special abilities. Luke and many other children find themselves trapped in a hostile, brutal system with no escape.
The Wind Through the Keyhole
Related to the Dark Tower series, The Wind Through the Keyhole follows Roland Deschain, the last gunslinger as he battles grief and guilt following his mother’s death.
The story acts as an introduction to the captivating series and covers the hunt for a shape-shifter, who is a survivor of one of the beast’s most recent attacks.
Read by Michael C. Hall, Pet Sematary is one of the most frightening books ever written and follows Dr. Louis Creed as he settles into the picture-perfect town of Ludlow in Maine.
But this town isn’t the idyllic setting it seems. Dark secrets remain hidden and danger lurks nearby. There is a graveyard close to the Creeds’ house that contains the corpses of all the beloved pets children have buried over the years. And just behind lays another burial site – one a lot more sinister and considered a forbidden area.
The Green Mile
This is one of the most powerful and emotive books in King’s collection. The Green Mile is set in Cold Mountain Penitentiary, where convicted killers sit waiting for their death sentences. Prison Guard, Paul Edgecombe drives this story and retells his experiences working on death row.
Madmen, intense murderers, and corrupt guards all feature in his story, but one prisoner steals the show. John Coffey is innocent and gifted with an exceptional supernatural talent. But the evidence is stacked up against him. Will Paul let Coffey get executed?
Cujo follows the story of a huge, 200-pound Saint Bernard who gets bitten by bats. He transforms from a loveable, bumbling dog to a vicious, flesh-eating monster capable of playing mind tricks and luring his victims from afar.
This is a pulse-pounding page-turner guaranteed to keep you engaged.
This one puts an eerie King-like twist on an enchanting fantasy tale. Fairy Tale hones in on Charlie Reade, an ordinary high-schooler who has learned to be independent following a turbulent childhood and family dynamic.
But when Charlie finds a portal into another world, a world at war, everything changes.
Carrie White is bullied at school. She has no friends and her home life isn’t much better either. Her mom is devoutly religious, and her home life consists of rituals and abusive behavior.
So, when Carrie finds out she has telekinetic powers, she decides to exact revenge on everyone who has ever done her wrong, which is pretty much everyone. Carrie is an eerie, psychologically driven novel that incorporates themes of emotional strain, madness, religion, and science fiction.
11/22/63 is a fantastic alternate history novel that follows Jake and Al, two great friends who are both determined to prevent the assassination of President Kennedy.
Using themes of science fiction, King allows Jake to delve into the late 1950s, to complete some groundwork needed to prevent a future attack. But when Jake falls in love and the details of time travel become blurry, what was once history becomes Jake’s reality.
If It Bleeds
This is a great choice for those of you with short attention spans! If It Bleeds is a collection of 4 epic tales that merge reality, psychology, and fantasy with, of course, a terrifying concept at its core.
These stories are varied and gripping, often touching on the dangerous parallels between good and evil. These stories are not the ones to miss out on!
Finders Keepers is a 2016 Audie Award finalist and tells a captivating story of obsession, crime, and envy. The plot line centers around John Rothstein, a brilliant author who created the beloved character of Jimmy Gold.
But Rothstein hasn’t released a new book in years because the iconic character is now used as a marketing tool. Morris Bellamy is Rothstein’s number 1 fan and is angry with this decision. In revenge, the fan murders Rothstein and drains him of money. In doing so, he finds an unused manuscript detailing another Jimmy Gold book.
Decades later, Pete Saubers finds the notebooks and leftover money and goes on a hunt for Morris who is released from prison after a 35-year sentence. This Misery-esque tale is an excellent tale of how respect and obsession can quickly turn dangerous.
These audiobooks are some of the best King has to offer and any one of them is guaranteed to provide you with an enthralling, twisted story with a captivating plotline and interesting characters. Tread carefully with Stephen King, his books are addictive!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best Stephen King novel?
The Shining is known as the classic, scary King novel and provoked a brilliant film adaptation which was also very popular.
Is Stephen King one of the richest writers ever?
Yes – with a net worth of over $500 million, King is one of the top 10 best-paid writers of all time.
What is Stephen King’s longest book?
The Stand, with 1,152 pages in total, is King’s longest standalone work.
What is Stephen King’s shortest book?
With only 127 pages, Cycle of the Werewolf is King’s shortest book and it is technically a novella.
What is Stephen King’s scariest book?
Although this is subjective, many fans have named Pet Sematary as his scariest book to date.