The Dark Half

In Book Reviews on December 4, 2013 at 7:06 pm

Hodder & Stoughton 1989

George Stark. Not a very nice guy.

Nutshell blurb: Thad Beaumont is a writer. He’s written some books under his name and some under the pen name of George Stark. He decides to ‘kill’ George Stark and write only under his own name, but what do you do when your alter ego comes to life and starts killing people?

This book was deliciously creepy and I’m really glad that I’ve decided to renew my relationship with Stephen King. He’s such an amazing writer and has a knack not only for characterisation but also for scaring the bejeezus out of me. I never know who’s going to kick the bucket in his books. It’s usually pretty safe to assume that most of the characters will be killed off. I try to prepare myself for it so that I’m pleasantly surprised if they manage to live through the book.

I liked the premise of this book a lot. A guy’s nom de plume manifests himself as a real person and kills off the people who killed him off. Also, who knew that sparrows could be so sinister?

Mr. King’s timing is impeccable as well. He never reveals things too soon and when he does it always leaves me breathless. He certainly is the master.

I think that one of the aspects of this book that I connected with deeply was the idea of having a darker half wandering around, knowing what you know with the ability to screw your life up monumentally. It makes me wonder what my dark half would be like.

As with most Stephen King books I’ve read, this one is incredibly gory. If that’s not your thing, you might want to steer clear. Otherwise, it’s a thrilling read that kept me gripped until the very end.

  1. It’s one of my favorite King books. I think only Needful Things and Duma Key really topped it for me.

    • I love Needful Things too. It’s my favourite. I noticed that it had some of the same characters as well.

      • There’s a lot of crossover between characters and places and events in King books. I dimly recall there being a book or a website that tracks all of them, and where each of the stories stray into each other… The fact that all of his works, even the ones that seem to be on other worlds, happen in the same larger and intersecting universe always intrigued me.

      • Yes, I noticed that too. I guess it makes sense. If you’ve created a fictional world (even if it exists in the real world) and it was good, you’d want to hang onto it as well as some of the more interesting characters. I don’t like delving too deeply into author’s backgrounds, though, because if I find something objectionable it will put me off of their work. From what I’ve read about him, Stephen King seems to be pretty cool but I still don’t want to know too much. 🙂

  2. I hadn’t heard of this one but it sounds awesome! I just finished reading Lisey’s Story which left me a bit disappointed so it would be good to find a book which will renew my faith in the master that is Stephen King.

  3. Amazing and Thank you… @ ^_^
    kindness blossoms in your heart
    My love be your friend in all journey

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