Tuesday, August 13, 2013

#31: Joyland by Stephen King

In the 1970s, a young man spends his summer working at a southern amusement park at the end of its era; today, he contemplates that memorable summer of longing and death in Stephen King's Joyland.

Joyland is an unusual novel for Stephen King in a lot of ways. First, it was written for the Hard Case Crime line, a paperback series of lost noirs and original titles in the same vein; and second, despite having a ghost story at the center, and several characters who seem to display psychic powers (including a carnival fortune teller and a sick child), King firmly roots Joyland in the crime novel tradition.

Despite its unusual pedigree it is a solid thriller, infused with melancholy.  King writes in a sure-handed way and offers up a large-scale, cinematic conclusion.

I bought this for myself with an Amazon gift card and read it quickly.  Recommended for King fans and general readers.

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