Wednesday, May 7, 2014

JUST AFTER SUNSET: Stories by Stephen King


I've heard so many people critique Stephen King by saying that his books are always long and he needs editing. That boggles my brain, because to me he seems to be one of the only mainstream authors that consistently releases great short stories, short novels, and novellas. And this book once again proves that he's one of the top dogs of the short fiction format.

This might actually be one of my favorite Stephen King short story collections (and yes I've pretty much read all of them)! This is his collection with the strongest, most cohesive themes connecting each story. Many of the stories have to do with accepting and overcoming death and loss. There's also a definite influence by 9/11 events in many of the stories. There's a lot less pure horror in here than many expect from King.

But that's not to say that King has lost his touch for the macabre. "The Cat from Hell" reads like something that would have been right at home in his first collection, Night Shift, and the most popular work from the collection: the fabulous novella "N.", is a creepy tale of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder told in the intriguing epistolary format that ultimately takes a Lovecraftian turn. But there are also some very quiet, tender, and beautifully written pieces here, like the first story "Willa".

I liked almost all the stories in this collection. The only one that I was not all that keen on is another popular one from the set, "Stationary Bike". It just didn't grab me. 

My favorites here include: the beautiful "The New York Times at Special Bargain Rates", the brilliantly suspenseful "A Very Tight Place", "Willa", "N.", "Harvey's Dream", and "The Things They Left Behind".

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please be respectful