This collection of four novellas, markedly different in tone and subject, includes three that have become well-received movies. The first (filmed as The Shawshank Redemption) is a rich, satisfying tale about an innocent man who nurtures hope and devises a scheme to escape from prison. In "Apt Pupil", a boy discards his innocence by enticing an old man to travel with him into a reawakening of long-buried evil. In "The Body" (filmed as Stand By Me), a writer looks back on the trek he took with three friends on the brink of adolescence. The final novella, "The Breathing Method", is a horror yarn about a woman whose indomitable spirit keeps her baby alive under extraordinary circumstances.