Dr. Sleep

What books, zines or other pulp are you reading? What aren't you reading? What should everyone else read?
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Dr. Sleep

Postby john_titor » Mon Oct 07, 2013 10:51 pm

It dawned on me that I have read all of Stephen King's last three releases. I hadn't picked him up since Carrie and The Shining back when.

While every Stephen King book is a relative page turner, I often skip over paragraphs and pages. He's engaging, but adds a lot of fluff. I have mixed emotions on his work. It is always compelling, but I am not sure if I am always left satisfied. Like a Big Mac gut ache three hours later.

The book is a sequel to The Shining. After seeing the movie and reading the book I never really asked myself "what happened then". From the press I read Mr. King and many of his fans asked that very question. Whatever.

It picks up with Danny 30 or so years down the line. A drinker. The under-story is of AA redemption.

King handles some tension well enough with a kidnapping mid-way through and resolves it with enough meat on the bone to finish out the story. I was thankful for that.

If this book were a movie I would recommend waiting until it comes out on video. Good but not 12 bucks.

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Re: Dr. Sleep

Postby pjbogart » Tue Oct 08, 2013 6:49 pm

I just finished it and I thought it was excellent. I agree that King has a tendency to add a lot of his fluff to his work, so much so that some really great yarns seem to cross the finish line in an arthritic limp under the great weight of the finished product. I'm looking at you, "Under the Dome".

I also think that King has a tendency to wrap up his books in a rushed boredom, as though he spent the last three years writing it, really liked the story, but desperately wants to move on. I thought "Doctor Sleep" was pretty compelling from start to finish, and that was pretty satisfying.

The one critique I'd offer without spoiling anything is that one of his big twists was kind of eye-rolling. It probably would have been more effective if the reader had known all along and you just got to enjoy the characters catch up with you.

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Re: Dr. Sleep

Postby barney » Tue Oct 08, 2013 11:26 pm

I admit I thought about picking it up, until I saw a review outlining the network of organized evil chasing Danny and the heroine across the country or whatever. He uses plot device that a lot - not my favorite.

I find he is at his best when the horror and evil are 'decentralized', so to speak, and could happen to basically anyone. I do agree that he gets rushed towards the end, especially his later works - which is why his short stories are tops on my list of his works. I think I've read Night Shift almost a hundred times.

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Re: Dr. Sleep

Postby SpringJS » Sat Jul 26, 2014 8:18 am

The Shining was the most scared I have ever been reading a book. This book didn't repeat that level of terror for me. However, I was seven years old when I read the original and the magic and terror of childhood can't ever be completely recaptured. This book was as great a sequel as could ever have been expected to follow up a story that holds that important of a position in our collective pasts.

Don't read this book if all you want is to return to The Overlook Hotel and crazy JackTorrence. Neither are revived except as a reference and recap of Danny Torrence's history. The Overlook Hotel blew up and Jack Torrence died. There are echoes from that past, redrum and others, but this isn't as much of a sequel as it is a new story starring old characters.

King briefly updates us on what happened to little Danny and his mother Wendy, as well as the old cook who shared the shine with Danny. That update was pretty d--- scary in and of itself. I won't give it away, but some re-visitations were made.

In Danny's adulthood the story becomes less insanely crazy/scary than the first book. However, King's storytelling and ability to scare are still powerfully strong. This is a different tale completely than The Shining, with only a little overlap. Don't expect to experience that same level of terror and you won't be disappointed.

There was also a very human side of this story. Death and dying, the fight for sobriety, basically the life of an adult child of an abusive alcoholic -- who also happens to be able to read minds, see the future and communicate telepathically.

I listened to this book on Audible. The narrator did an excellent job although he was a tiny bit breathy. The reader, who in this case you must know for 18.5 hours, in an audio version is almost as important as the story. This narrator did a fairly good job of adding to the suspense of this book. The audio version won't disappoint.

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