Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Quick Review of Duma Key by Stephen King

 I just finished reading one of Stephen King's latest novel, Duma Key.  Ever since Bag of Bones, I have been less enthusiastic about King's new novels, and often wait several years to read them.  Don't get me wrong, I go out and buy them as soon as they are released, but I let them fester on my bookshelf while I attend to shorter paperbacks.  I did the same thing with Cell and with From a Buick  8.

The funny thing is, once I start reading one, I am instantly engrossed and quickly reminded that, however dull the book appears from the description, it is better than 95% of the books out there.   And once I started, I flew through the 600 pages in two weeks (if I had extended periods of time in which to curl up and do nothing but read, i would have finished it much more quickly).
It's not great story-wise, but it doesn't have to be because King's prose and characters are strong enough to engage you.  It's no Shining or the The Stand or It, those that we now consider classics, or even Desperation or Needful Things, which are newer classic in my mind, but it isn't as slow and ponderous as Insomnia or 
Gerald's Game. 
I'm not going to go into plot details because the plot itself is irrelevant when it comes to a King review, especially a quick mini-review.  A great author like King can make even the most inane plot enjoyable (for example, The Regulators, a Bachman Book, released along side Desperation.  Stupid story, but still readable.)  What makes or breaks King are the characters and the pacing, and both are executed well in Duma Key.
It's a good read, a quick read despite it's girth, and worth the time.

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