Sunday, April 21, 2013

Stephen King


My wife and I just came in from an evening at the movies. I talked her into seeing OBLIVIAN with Tom Cruise. I don’t want to go into a lot of detail here, but if you like SCI-FI, or seeing Mr. Cruise shirtless—a lot—spend the money and see it at the theatre.

What I really want to do is give a big shout-out to my favorite author; Mr. King. Saturday my sister and her husband were in town for a family event, so we spent our morning at a flea market. The ladies wanted to go see arts and crafts, but the brother-in-law and I wanted to go hunt bargains, in other words, sift through junk looking for a misplaced jewel.

While looking through a shelf lined with misc. books, I came across a copy of The Stand. I’ve read most of Stephen King’s books but wasn’t sure if I had read this one. Besides, I collect his hardbacks. I’ve got quite a collection going, including a first-edition of The Shining. So I spent three dollars and bought the book. I’m glad I did.

There is an interesting introduction in the front of the book from the author. He states that the original book published in 1978 had to be cut by some 500 pages to keep the price of the book down. In the copy I purchased—labeled “For the first time complete and uncut”—the last page carries the hefty number 1153.

I know what you’re thinking. That’s a lot of reading for one story. And here lies one of the reasons some say they don’t read Stephen King: His books are too long.

Here’s my take on the matter. Take it or leave it. I have yet to read one word written by Mr. King that came across as fluff, or filler. What I see is depth of color, setting, and character. I’ve read many of his stories and have been left wondering what happens next for the hero (if he lived). It’s like a trance. He pulls you in so quickly, you don’t know what hit you. Can his stories be told with fewer pages? Absolutely. But that’s not to say they should be. I love the winding road he takes me on. I can’t get enough of a writer who puts me smack dab in the middle of a different world every time I read one of his books, and has me believing every word of it. I am immersed in the workings of a master story teller. Besides, what’s the hurry? You can get back to the other garbage on your Kindle soon enough.

Any King diehards out there?

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