Tag Archives: Horror

Review: The Outsider

The Outsider

The Outsider
By Stephen King
Scribner Book Company, 9781501180989, May 2018, 576pp.

The Short of It:

Probably King’s best writing in a long, long time.

The Rest of It:

I am a die-hard King fan but even I’ll admit that some books hit it out of the park while others amuse me. The Outsider hit it out of the park and then some.

A young boy is violated and murdered in the worst possible way. Evidence at the scene and statements from eye witnesses lead investigators to a very unlikely suspect, Terry Maitland. Terry is a stand-up guy. He coaches the town’s little league team and teaches English at the high school. No one, including his wife and two children can believe what is happening when he is hauled in for the murder of that young boy.

What makes the case more complicated, is the DNA and fingerprints recovered at the scene point to Terry but Terry was out-of-town with his colleagues when this all went down. How could he be in two places at the same time?

As the story moves along, you quickly realize that something else is at play here, but what? My mind was going all over the place. Was Terry guilty? Did the investigators really have the right guy?  That’s when the lead investigator enlists the help of others and I gotta tell you, that is when the story gets really interesting and King fans will cheer when they get to one particular part in the story.

As you can see, I am not saying much about the plot because it’s too easy to give something away but all I can say is that The Outsider was everything I was hoping it would be. It’s almost 600 pages long but I had to pace myself or blow through it in one sitting. It’s the type of book you want to take your time reading only because it’s so good and you don’t want it to end.

I’ve had friends who listened to the audio say it was fabulous as well. I don’t think you can go wrong with this book. It’s really good, really entertaining and will keep you on the edge of your seat as you try to figure it all out. I love it when Uncle Stevie hits a home run.

Source: Purchased
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

Review: Sleeping Beauties

Sleeping Beauties

Sleeping Beauties
By Stephen and Owen King
Print: Scribner Book Company, 9781501163401, September 2017, 720pp.
AudioMarin Ireland (Narrator), Simon & Schuster Audio (Publisher)

(Note: Review of both audio and print copies)

The Short of It:

After falling asleep, women around the world find themselves wrapped in a cocoon-like substance.  Alive, but for how long?

The Rest of It:

I read Sleeping Beauties as part of a read along (@sleepingbeautiesRAL).  Truth be told, I always look forward to King’s fall releases but this one was a little different. Mainly, because he wrote it with his son, Owen. However, the tone of the book was very different from what he’s written before.

Much of the story details how one particular town is overtaken by this “webbing” and how the male inhabitants, although baffled by it, are also terrified that their significant others, their daughters, mothers and sisters may never come out of this dream state. This is a real concern for them but for some, it begs the question, why? Why are they so concerned? Because their loved ones will never be the same? Or because they will now be forced to live without women taking care of the house? The kids?

Sleeping Beauties is a horror novel but not in the traditional King sense. It’s King’s way of burning a bra without owning one. It’s a poster-waving tribute to women’s rights but the agenda was too obvious and much of it felt scripted. There are no surprises here and truthfully, I felt a little depressed when I turned the last page.

Because some of you have asked, I could tell which sections King wrote and which sections his son wrote. All of the weird, quirky mannerisms and the setting of the stage, felt like Uncle Stevie to me. The progression of the story felt like Owen may have handled that part. Of course, I can’t know for sure but that is my guess.  It would be interesting to know their writing process for this one.

Audio & Print

I read this in print and listened to it on audio. I tried both formats because in print, the visuals were pretty stunning. King is so good at setting the stage. The audio copy was pretty respectable though. Read by Marin Ireland, I felt she did an admirable job of giving each of the many characters a true, authentic voice.  As you may know, King loves to includes lots of characters and this book was no exception.

In the end, the story left me wanting . I feel dissatisfied and a little angry. Perhaps, this is the point.

Nevertheless, she persisted.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.