2/5 – DNF at 58%
CW: death, cancer, abortion, domestic violence, and animal abuse
I hate DNFing Stephen King, but this one had to be done. Could I have finished it? Totally. I could have made myself get through it and have the whole story at my fingertips to reference. But did I want to? No way.
This story follows two men who are on opposite sides of Derry. Ed Deepneau, the dark and conservative side, and Ralph Roberts, the light and liberal side. Because, at times, this book felt like our political scene, with the conservatives against the liberals using a lot of the same rhetoric.
It also spends a lot of time on abortion, which is one of Ed’s obsessions for some reason. I didn’t quite get why, but whatever. He was a pretty lackluster villain, as were the “bald doctors” that King introduced.
But, I’m rambling. Probably because I can’t nail down the exact plot of this story and how to explain it.
King even calls it a “stiff, try-hard novel”. And I agree with him. It was far too stiff, trying to make some point about the world that we live in while also tying in his Dark Tower series (which I’m not into one bit) and keeping with his interest in psychokinesis and things along that topic.
It just didn’t work for me. I loved Ralph and I love it when people examine the realities of a small town, but this didn’t work for me. I was bored and confused. With how long it is (nearly 800 pages!) there was next to no plot and I found it tedious to get to the point. I nearly got 500 pages in before calling quits.
So, sorry, King. This isn’t my favorite of yours.
Can you think of a book that you’d label as stiff or try-hard?