review: The Dead Zone

book review…

The Dead ZoneThe Dead Zone by Stephen King
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is definitely one of my favorites by King. If you are a child of the eighties (or older), gen x, you will get a real nostalgia kick what with all the references to American culture 1970’s. The characters come to life, the storylines thread well and weave into a fine fabric, and it’s not too gory or over the top with fantasy, less supernatural more psychic powered, and overall the book is pretty timeless. The movie’s not bad, either, what with Chris Walken. This ice cream cone is vintage Stephen King and stand alone sweet!

fear and the medulla

Back in the desperate place the mind likes to take me, where the thoughts are all discouraging and fear walks unaccosted across the oblongata, tamping the vessels until blood pressure rises, I see that I am troubled and finally say a prayer, as my breathing heads for the shallows where the shore has disappeared…

from King’s ‘The Dead Zone

what saved me, this time, was drawing the Dead Zone, the paperback, up to my face, my nose tucked in towards the spine, and closing my eyes and inhaling deeply the scent of the pulp, which transported me body and soul into a lovely forest, some forgotten place and time,  from which this pulp was hewn.

the ides of march upon us, here is my wish…
may we overcome all our fear, live long and prosper
– KatYa, 2017


Review: On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

On Writing: A Memoir of the CraftOn Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

King’s book on writing (written around 1999).
I thought it was helpful. I particular took a mental note on his comments about drafting. How he works it. Also the importance of having a beta readers, or someone like Tabitha King in your corner. I like how he also recognized the ‘magical’ part of the writing process. I think both beginning writers and tried and true authors could learn something from this book. And it is etched with King’s trademark sense of humor and some really cool anecdotes.

book review

Mr. Mercedes (Bill Hodges Trilogy, #1)Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This is what you get for an impulse buy in Safeway, I mean, a grocery store is a place people go to buy groceries and liquor, not paperbacks! Being accustomed the cold and hard grip of my kindle lately, I just could not turn down the irresistible feeling of all that paper in my hand. And Stephen King has and always will have captured a piece of my heart, so I consider him a trusted source of quality fiction. But his niche is horror – not whodunits!

I enjoyed the first hundred pages or more. A good setup, very interesting characters. Dialogue was sharp, and King’s wit was splashed across the pages. He’s not always convincing me he has his finger on the early twenty-first century, which is when the book takes place. I mean, sometimes, with words like ‘milquetoast’, I cannot help picturing an elderly white man penning this book. Not that there’s any problem with that, but some of the language is a bit old-fashioned is all. Another nice touch is the exchange of narration from the perspective of the criminal to the perspective of the detective from chapter to chapter. He gets well inside the head of the sick bastard, that’s for sure. One of King’s strengths, I suppose. But the writing wasn’t really special or anything, it was a bit cookie cutter. I kept on thinking, if I took the name King off this book, would I still be reading?

I think this book may have been outlined to perfection, before it was written. It just lacks that certain magic of natural discovery you find in books that are written with less of a perfect plan in place. It is very tidy. All the pieces fit snugly together all the way to the end. Like an editor took it and cut all the juice out of it, to make it more marketable, more salable. Somewhere towards the last couple hundred pages of the book, I started doing those calculations in my mind and that thing where you grab the pages between your forefinger and thumb to save your place, and check for the back matter to see really how much is left to get to the end. It just happened, I couldn’t help it.

I really wanted to feel deeply immersed and captivated, after all, King was an author I grew up on and he will always be a champion of horror! Alas, this book is not horror.

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