Quitters Stephen King's latest, Blood and Smoke, three longish short stories, are not only read by their esteemed author, they're available only as an audiobook production. All three star men who have given up the weed, yet cigarettes play a crucial part in each beguilingly inventive tale. King, that consummate conjurer of terror-crazed fear, has put most of the maniacal tricks aside here. The evil faced and fought in the first and last stories is wholly human, out-of-control in one, and all-too controlled in the other. The man in the middle faces a more familiar King-creation, a truly menacing presence that haunts a New York hotel room and threatens to undo and do in a cynical perpetrator of true ghost stories. King is in super-fine form and audio-only suits him to a terrifying T. Sukey Howard reports on spoken word audio each month.

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