Elevation by Stephen King (3 out of 5)

I am a huge Stephen King fan. It’s nice to see an author still writing original novels, doing it frequently, and not putting his name on books that other people write (like you-know-who). He is still capable of scaring the crap out of me, profoundly disturbing me while reading, and getting into my head so bad that I cannot sleep. Not the case with you-know-who. You-know-who just makes me chortle with disbelief at the author photos, at the publication of a new novel every month (it seems), and with the same tired and retread plots in every book. You never get the same thing twice with Stephen King.

How damn refreshing.

This is another departure. It’s a novella, although I’m not sure they are terming it as thus. It felt like a novella to me more than a short story, likely because I am used to his short stories being published in a book with more than one. This is a single, small volume that is easily read in a hour or two.

In small town Castle Rock, Scott Carey is having a problem most of us would love to have- he’s steadily losing weight. He goes to Dr Bob, the only doctor he trusts, and the good doc is also alarmed as he witnesses the progressive weight loss. Scott’s clothes are falling off of him, but that damn scale still weighs the same with and without clothes. He eats a ton, gets on the scale, and still loses weight. Neither he nor the doc know what to think. In the meantime, Scott is engaged in what could only be termed a neighborly dispute with the local lesbian couple. Their dog keeps dropping his poo bombs on Scott’s lawn, and after awhile, he confronts the women. One is friendly and attempts to broker peace; the other is as easy as a nuclear war. Scott finally videotapes the dog and shows it to the ladies. Instead of smoothing things over, it seems worse. Scott just can’t win. He begins to dine at the couple’s restaurant, trying both to make amends and support a local business. He quickly realizes the residents of Castle Rock are against the gay couple and their venture, and he decides to get involved and try to change things. As it is in the real world, it’s not often possible. And Scott is still dealing with this mysterious ailment. What’s going on with him?

King manages to write a book that isn’t all horror. In fact, none of it can be classified as horror. More like a transitive thought process poured into a novella. It’s also missing the bite of the usual Stephen King production. I liked the attempt at humanity and injustice of bias against gay couples. You know it exists in this world we populate daily. I like Scott as a character, and I like the idea of his ailment as plot device. The execution just seemed scattered to the wind. Kind of like Scott in the last part of the novel. As a feel-good book, it succeeds. As a standout? Not quite.

The book is brought yo your bookstores by Simon and Schuster and is out in hardcover.

~ by generationgbooks on December 28, 2018.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: