Honestly, I just bought this audio because I needed something long for a trip. I don't like horror, and haven't liked anything I've read of King since "The Shining."
But this was excellent. King takes his time developing characters that you actually care about, rather than just setting up mannequins for some baddie to slash. At times I forgot it was supposed to be genre fiction, and got so caught up in the human portrayals and situations that when something brutal or shocking did happen, I was even more horrified. The reason I dislike horror novels is because most are empty slasher tales, with only the method of the demise of the monster being at issue, along with which stock character would get it next. I enjoy horror stories that transcend the stereotype, and this one did.
King shows he has grown with this novel. His characters are real, and their lives are intriguing even without some supernatural beastie coming after them. His insights are refreshing. Almost makes me wish King would venture out of his horror/fantasy genres more.
But this is still a horror book, and it works as one, with a creepy beastie and some originality--although many of King's stock techniques are still apparent.
And the narrator is very good. His style is relaxed but engaged, and he doesn't rush through scenes. Well done. He's now on a short list of narrators who will coax me into buying audios I otherwise wouldn't have. Overall, I really enjoyed this book, and have listened to it twice.
I found Lisey's Story mostly weird, but Duma Key was King back in form. The characters are believable and multi-dimensional; the suspense is well-crafted to build as the story proceeds. It's tricky for a writer to deliver the payoff of a supernatural thriller without descending into the ridiculous, more so as readers become more and more sophisticated and inured to elaborate special effects horrors. How do you describe the baddie without creating the literary equivalent of a foam rubber monster? (We're talking zombies, and scary china dolls and yard jockeys come to life in this book.) Nevertheless, for the most part, Duma Key delivers the goods with only a few moments that had me more amused that savoring the thrill of apprehension. There's a heavy use of foreshadowing, that I liked at first, but ultimately found annoying because it detracted from the suspense. All in all, a fun listen that I had trouble turning off.
I have yet to be disappointed by any of this master of terror's books and this is no exception.
Only, you don't even know you are about to get the wits scared out of you when it happens! He's done that to me before and he can still fool me everytime!!! Love ya Mr. King!!!
I read, I write; I listen
"Duma Key" is a great book. Its the kind of book that makes the next book you read,(listen to), hard to live up to. The narrator, John Slattery, does an excellent job seemlessly slipping into each character without forcing it to the point of absurdity the way some narrators can. Stephen King writes the story in first person which gives the listener a more intimate insight into the main character, Edgar Freemantle. The other people in Edgar's life and especially the ones he encounters on Duma Key are all interesting and fit well into the story,And then there's the "Stephen King" touch. 5 stars
I am a huge Stephen King fan and this book is no exception. Living on the West coast of Florida myself and being married to someone from Minnesota, This book was a lot of fun because it talked about a lot of stuff I knew. The production of the audio was great and the storey was perfect Stephen King.
I loved this book. After reading Under the Dome which was a noisy, fairly grim story...it was nice to follow it up with a quieter tale that is much more human. In fact, Duma Key is very literary in the way it is written.
What I loved is that there is no bad guy in this book. Edgar Freemantle actually is blessed with loving friends and family. These relationships are developed throughout the story. I cared about them so much, I wasn't looking forward to the part of the book where you know the inevitable shoe is going to drop.
The ending is perfect and restrained. I was actually sad when it ended. There are clues sprinkled throughout the book that click together at the end and everything pretty much makes sense, with enough left open to keep you thinking days later. Its very haunting...
John Slattery (Mad Men) does an awesome job. This story is told in first person, and he really did become Edgar Freemantle.
If you're looking for a King book that doesn't have buckets of gore or violence, yet has enough chills to make you want to sleep with the lights on. If you're looking for a book with characters you will care about. I recommend this book.
I want to whole heartedly thank Stephen King for writing Duma Key and Audible.com for picking, as they so well do with SK books, a great narrator for it. Having listened to SK books like The Cell and now Duma Key I'm becoming an even greater fan of SK than I was before (and that's saying a lot since I've read so many of his books over the decades). Duma Key is quite simply a wonderful tale.
The story is a balanced blend of loss and appreciation, brokeness and fresh starts, of life and memories, sadness and success, suspense and character development, horror and beauty.
I love to read but don't have much time so, listening to books has become a necessary passion. If I can't read, I'll listen and it makes mundane things like driving long distances and cleaning house bearable.
This quickly became one of my favorite Stephen King novels. the characters are real, relatable and the narrator does a fantastic job of expressing each one's personality.
I'm back now as a fan of Stephen King after listening to Duma Key.
I really liked the reading of this book. This is typical Stephen King at his best. I have always liked his story telling ability and how descriptive he is in his character development and the location descriptions.