Saturday, November 18, 2006

Lisey's Story

Reading this latest novel by Stephen King reminded me both why I used to love Stephen King novels, and why I haven't read one in a long time.

Lisey's Story opens with Lisey (pronounced Leesey) cleaning out her famous horror novelist's study after he has been dead for two years. The book takes her on a trip down memory lane--her memories, his memories, and their memories.

I had given up Stephen King novels, even after enjoying several of his tomes, especially It and The Stand. I had became increasingly disturbed by the images and the profanity and general coarseness of the voice, in spite of excellent storytelling and suspense.

Lisey's Story is billed as a love story. Stephen King, master of horror and suspense, writing a love story! I had recently been thinking about picking up The Stand again, when I heard the press about this newest release, and thought that I should check this one out. Yes, it's a love story. The heart is there. The suspense is also there. Unfortunately, so was the coarse voice and profanity and not a little blood. The story is mostly Lisey's and her husband's Scott's. Lisey has to explore the past so that she can move forward into her future. I was drawn into this story by the second page, and read all 528 pages fairly quickly.

If you have enjoyed Stephen King's other works, especially his epic stories such as It and The Stand, then this one is definitely on par with those. However, if you have avoided the Master of Horror for the reasons that I was recently, this one isn't really that different.

This book review is linked up to Semicolon's Saturday Review of Books.


Susanne said...

I have never been a horror story fan, Jennifer, so I think I'll pass this one up. Something about not sleeping at night while reading them. 8v0

I took your suggestion and linked my review to semicolon. Thanks.

Carrie said...

I appreciated this review very much! I've never read Stephen King (avoiding horror stories which would keep me up at nights as well!) but it was great to hear your thoughts on King.

Thanks for sharing!

Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

I have never read a Stephen King novel. Not a fan of horror nor all the other neg stuff you mentioned. But it is so interesting to hear about it. I love your reviews! :)

Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

PS - thanks for your input on my blog about the video games.

Gina said...

I have The Stand in my TBR pile. I've never read a Stephen King novel but heard that was a good place to start.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this review. I used to read a ton of Stephen King books back in high school, but haven't read any of his novels for a long, long time. He is a real master story-teller and I do wish he'd tone down the "other stuff," but I don't see that happening anytime soon! Like you, I've enjoyed some of his more non-horror-type stories.

I do have to say that his writing book, On Writing has some good stuff in it. Some language, yes, but mostly just insight into his writing process. A good book for aspiring fiction-writers to read.

Jen Robinson said...

Thanks for the review. I appreciate your taking the time to review a book that didn't necessarily appeal for you because of certain aspects. I don't mind the profanity so much, personally, but I, too, had pretty much stopped reading his newer stuff because of the violence. Rose Madder and Needful Things were both horrible that way, though like you I enjoyed The Stand, and re-read it on occasion. I think that I will look this on up. Thanks!