Stephen King |OT| - Era Ka-Tet

PurpleRainz

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,655
It’s good but Revival is better. It’s modern Stephen writing a early (Dead Zone, Salem’s Lot)Stephen style book. It’s as tight and as mean as those two, but with 30+more years of experience/craft. May even be my favorite.
I was gonna say it's tied with Revival for his recent stuff but he's done a lot of really great short story collections the past ten years as well. I didn't like The Outsider though and skipped Mr Mercedes because I'm not interested in that style of book right now.
 

Slim Action

Member
Jul 4, 2018
781
Enjoyed 11.22.63 a lot but it really slumps in the last 50-100 pages. (Though the very last page or two is quite good)
 

Matthew77

Avenger
Oct 29, 2017
2,372
Massachusetts
I was gonna say it's tied with Revival for his recent stuff but he's done a lot of really great short story collections the past ten years as well. I didn't like The Outsider though and skipped Mr Mercedes because I'm not interested in that style of book right now.
I liked outsider and the Mr. Mercedes trilogy but I can get why it may not interest some, definitely more detective thriller vs. horror/fantasy.
 
Oct 26, 2017
1,269
Awesome seeing all this activity in the thread.

I’ll second the recommendation for Revival. Incredible book.

The Institute is right around the corner, and then he has a new Holly Gibney novel, If It Bleeds, due out in 2020.
 

RepairmanJack

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,842
It’s good but Revival is better. It’s modern Stephen writing a early (Dead Zone, Salem’s Lot)Stephen style book. It’s as tight and as mean as those two, but with 30+more years of experience/craft. May even be my favorite.
I have a hard time siding in this argument because they're both easily my favorite King in years. Revival has stuck with me more, but 11.22.63 just read so fast and so impossible to put down that it just makes it so good.
 

99humanity

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,010
I love Stephen King!

Finished The Stand on audiobook semi recently, maybe my 4th or 5th time reading that

Massive rambling thoughts on the whole book Spoilers for The Stand + Dark Tower. I probably went overboard on spoiler tags but I didn't want to put this whole mess behind a spoiler tag.

I always want more of the backstory on project blue and the government coverup. I get why he doesn't focus on this as much, but the scenes like the raid on the TV station are great. The chapters with Starkey are over too soon. I'd love to see the first book expanded upon if this mini series happens. The "No Great loss" chapter really displays SK's ability to make these incredible vignettes/short stories. I really want to see the concept of this chapter adapted into a bottle episode or something. He's so good at painting a new character and then quickly killing them, or building up to a fate that you already know will happen. I also love how he writes gunfights in this and Dark Tower. So much buildup, and the fight itself is over quickly but described in blunt detail. I'm not describing this well, but there's always a sense of horror not because of the violence, but because someone was alive one second and gone the next. He may get shit for his endings but he's undoubtedly great at building scenes like this.

Speaking of the ending, I actually like it for the most part

I don't like that the fireball literally turns into a hand, but other than that it's pretty fitting. Flagg brings out everyone in Vegas to watch the execution of the free zone members. He realizes he has his power back, uses it to shut Whitney's mouth and then his power is immediately turned against him. He's basically foiled by his own arrogance straight out of some trope. It works well with his character not knowing his own origins, or even really understanding the properties / rules of his own magic. He doesn't understand why he has foresight for certain aspects of his plan and not others, or why his spying abilities don't work on Tom Cullen. I think that paid off nicely. I love the mental image of Trashcan speeding toward Vegas with a warhead while rotting away from radiation poisoning. It wouldn't be The Stand without that! I also have a great mental image of Stu climbing back up the highway and seeing the mushroom cloud in the distance. For the rest of the book, Stu serves the plot as the messenger to the free zone, and the purpose of Tom & Nick's fate come to light as they help Stu recover (Nick via dream communication with Tom). It wraps up in a satisfying way.

I'd love a revised epilogue where Flagg is more closely connected to his character in DT. He could be transported to the level of the tower from Wizard and Glass; he's still in the post-superflu world in Topeka Kansas, but now he's resuming his quest against Roland. The entirety of The Stand could be a long-winded sidequest for him just so he could show up there in the end, not even knowing the true purpose along the way

Sometimes Nick is insanely verbose considering he has to write everything down. It's a very SK thing to have a main character who is disabled in some way and I wonder if he does this as a challenge to write around it. Like putting Tom and Nick together, or
Roland in Dark Tower losing his fingers early on that's constantly brought up later, and Susannah
Sometimes, it can feel like a gimmick to make a character stand out initially, but his characters are well defined beyond their tropes I think. But I love seeing parallels between his characters. In Dark Tower terms, to me Larry Underwood and Eddie Dean from DT are twinners and
Tom and Trashcan man are similar in how each side uses them for their cause. But since Boulder is supposed to be the good guys, you get a paragraph or two about Larry & crew feeling bad they're sending Tom over. They still do it though.
I like how the book clearly separates "good" and "bad" people and then the characters on both sides prove that humans aren't so clear cut like that. There's a lot of internal justification going on...eg "we can't stoop to their level...but we need to protect ourselves!" It's kinda cheesy cause it feels like you're meant to think that the Boulder crew is always in the right, but I still like it. The characters hypothesize what MIGHT happen in the future so often in this book, and that's where a lot of the excitement happens. Glen Batemen is often used as a vehicle for this.

I feel like Frannie could have been a better character
She's used to develop Harold's character (her rejection of him basically transforms him into incel psychopath mode) and Stu a lot. She's also used as a vehicle to relay the transcripts from the free zone meetings (which was such a slog my first read, but I appreciate them now). There's a few instances of scenes where Stu and Frannie talk about something, usually summarizing their day as a way to tell the story, and it ends in sex. Pretty sure there's a part where she's excited that Stu says he will find her a washboard ...and then they have sex. I guess SK is just really trying to sell Stu and Frannie as main characters in love but that relationship isn't one of the reasons I love the book. Wouldn't have minded if there were Lucy / Larry chapters in place of a couple of those, but Stu actually comes back so I guess they help strengthen their reunion scene.

It's been said before but SK's descriptions of people here are pretty damn dated. There's no way he would write a book in 2019 and describe a black character with "coal black" skin. Or jazz music that "only black ears could hear". And for a book with so many characters from all around the country, everyone sure is white! If this mini series happens, there's tons of creative wiggle room to have a more diverse cast without affecting the story whatsoever, and it would honestly look straight up weird/unrealistic if they were depicted as homogeneous as the book. Mother Abigail being a cliche magical black woman could be changed without breaking the plot, but if she were just surrounded by a more diverse cast maybe she wouldn't stand out as such. I do love her character as is.
 

Donald Draper

Banned
Feb 2, 2019
934
Is there any good physical Stephen king book collections that can be bought? I wanted rebuild my collection as I lost so many over the years. Doesnt have to be hard cover but i just wanted something faster than buying them 1 by 1.

I'm in Canada.
 

99humanity

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,010
Is there any good physical Stephen king book collections that can be bought? I wanted rebuild my collection as I lost so many over the years. Doesnt have to be hard cover but i just wanted something faster than buying them 1 by 1.

I'm in Canada.
I just bought this recent re-release of Three Novels collection (Carrie, 'Salems Lot, and The Shining in one giant hardcover), gonna pick it up in the store tomorrow
 

GRW810

Member
Oct 27, 2017
877
Still waiting for some more info on the Dark Tower TV series. There has been a trickle of casting news and a few on-set photos but little else. No one involved seems to be hyping it up and I'm not seeing much media clamour for coverage.

Really hope the series gets picked up. Wizard and Glass is a fantastic starting point for a DT show and it had so much potential.