This may come as a shock to you, but I read in genres other than m/m romance. And Stephen King is an old favorite of mine. Back when I was an impoverished student, his were pretty much the only books I’d buy as soon as they were released, and I’d stay up late to gobble them down. I’ve read him less diligently in recent years–my fault, not his. But when I was looking for an audiobook to spice up my walks, how could I resist a sequel to The Shining?
I did listen to his book rather than reading it, which presents a somewhat different experience. The narrator was terrific, dealing adeptly with the many character voices. I especially liked how he managed female characters–including a main character who’s a child–without using falsetto or other annoying tricks.
And I enjoyed the book as a whole. I don’t think it’s his best; it wasn’t as scary as I’d hoped. The suspense wasn’t quite as tight. I got the feeling King couldn’t bring himself to put a girl in too much danger. And the plot, as usual with King, was okay but nothing spectacular. Where he really shines (Hah! Pun!) is how he writes his characters. They feel real, even if they play only a minor part. And Mr. King can just plain write–he can tell any tale well.
Because I’m so often engrossed in writing and the editing process myself, I don’t read the same way I used to. I pay more attention to the mechanics. And I noticed a few minor slips that I know my editors would have caught. Nothing wrong, per se. Just some passages that needed a bit of tightening up. But then, I’m not Stephen King.
The book gave a satisfying conclusion to the story begun in The Shining, and it was a fine companion for many miles of walking.