Thursday, April 28, 2011

Bag of Bones

It hasn’t been too long since I read a Stephen King book (Hearts in Atlantis) but I’ve just had the pleasure of finishing yet another one; Bag of Bones (732 pages).

The narrator, Mike Noonan, is a bestselling author and Stephen King does a great job of making the character well rounded as this is an area he knows particularly well (being a best selling author and all). I can honestly say it is through Mike that the story is worth the read, without his view on the events of the novel the first half would have been very difficult to get through as the action is very minimal and slow.

The other great thing about this novel is the subtle switch from the normal action around the characters to the more supernatural occurrences. I think this adds to the ‘fear’ the novel is supposed to give the reader. The horror isn’t constant but creeps up slowly as your make your way through the chapters. Even King himself states, in his ending comments regarding his hope that the novel provokes sleepless nights, “It gave me one or two, and ever since writing it I’m nervous about going down cellar” (King 733). I can’t say I was scared reading this book but if anything I’ve ever read, or watched, gave me a little shiver it was Bag of Bones.

Although I mentioned that Mike Noonan made this book for me it is the 3-year-old girl who the novel centers around, Kyra Devore, that made me feel more attached to the action and feel for the problems of the characters. She is honestly the cutest character I have ever read about. For example, when Mike jokes with her, after she tries to jump on him, “Don’t tackle your own quarterback!” I couldn’t help but hold a small place in my heart (the bit saved for fictional characters, apparently) for Kyra as she runs around screaming “Don’t taggle yer own quartermack!” (King 461).

On a final note, I have to express my love and hate relationship with epilogues. Sometimes I hate them because they can ruin that perfect ending the novel had with a pointless chapter that only puts a sour taste in the mouth (or mind, if you will). The epilogue in Bag of Bones however is exactly what the novel needed, although it didn’t wrap everything up (because if it wrapped up some things it would have gone a little too far and moved into the area saved for fairy tales and stories of rainbows and unicorns) but provide answer with those ‘what happened?’ questions I was left with.

All in all a long but most worthwhile read.

The edition I read was ISBN: 0-671-02423-X

King, Stephen. Bag of Bones. New York: Pocket Books, 1999. Print.

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