Monthly ArchiveDecember 2006
Fiction 31 Dec 2006 10:16
I’ve read several reviews of this book saying that it is significantly different from other of Stephen King’s stories, but I don’t agree: I think his style is very clearly still there, and there are more similarities than differences to his other books.
The main plot, in short, is: Lisey, the widow of a famous writer who died two years ago, finally starts cleaning up his old office and deciding what to do with his papers. This brings a flood of memories of their time together, including memories of events of their past that she’d rather not remember. It turns out that the writer, Scott, had a very, well, interesting childhood (for lack of a better word), and his adulthood was not exactly normal either — nor was his death.
Everything that you’d expect from a Stephen King novel is there: supernatural, terror, graphic violence, long descriptions of settings, lots and lots of made-up words, phonetic spellings of regional accents… Some themes seem to come right out of other novels: the Territories (from The Talisman and Black House) are back, in a way, and the whole “deceased partner reaching out from beyond” seems eerily reminiscent of Bag of Bones (which is one my favourite SK books, by the way).
One can’t help but think about how much of this novel is sort of autobiographical, especially considering the close brush with death King had a few years ago. He claims that not much is, though.
I’ll agree that it’s not exactly a typical SK novel, but it’s not that much of a departure from his regular style. The way Scott’s story unfolds will break your heart, but it’s not a sad story; it’s even kind of uplifting, if you look at it the right way.