Audie Award Winner, Fiction, 2014
Audie Award Nominee, Solo Narration - Male, 2014
Stephen King returns to the characters and territory of one of his most popular novels ever, The Shining, in this instantly riveting novel about the now middle-aged Dan Torrance (the boy protagonist of The Shining) and the very special 12-year-old girl he must save from a tribe of murderous paranormals.
On highways across America, a tribe of people called The True Knot travel in search of sustenance. They look harmless - mostly old, lots of polyester, and married to their RVs. But as Dan Torrance knows, and spunky 12-year-old Abra Stone learns, The True Knot are quasi-immortal, living off the "steam" that children with the "shining" produce when they are slowly tortured to death.
Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel where he spent one horrific childhood year, Dan has been drifting for decades, desperate to shed his father's legacy of despair, alcoholism, and violence. Finally, he settles in a New Hampshire town, an AA community that sustains him, and a job at a nursing home where his remnant "shining" power provides the crucial final comfort to the dying. Aided by a prescient cat, he becomes "Doctor Sleep."
Then Dan meets the evanescent Abra Stone, and it is her spectacular gift, the brightest shining ever seen, that reignites Dan's own demons and summons him to a battle for Abra's soul and survival. This is an epic war between good and evil, a gory, glorious story that will thrill the millions of hyper-devoted fans of The Shining and wildly satisfy anyone new to the territory of this icon in the King canon.
©2013 Stephen King (P)2013 Simon & Schuster
"Will Patton's delivery enhances King's prose in ways that make King's work so much more enjoyable in audio than just reading it…Patton's narrative voice captures the rhythm of King's words. His character voices, filled with a variety of regional American accents, remain consistent. Most importantly, the sinister aspects that embody characters and moments of this novel are superbly executed and will certainly leave listeners on edge." (AudioFile)
"King, not one given to sequels, throws fans a big, bloody bone with this long-drooled-for follow-up to The Shining." (Booklist)
"…a gripping, taut read that provides a satisfying conclusion to Danny Torrance's story." (Publisher’s Weekly)
This is a follow-up to "The Shining," and the reader was FANTASTIC!!!!
The Shining, by Stephen King, way back when.
ALL of them were excellent. Momo was great, but also Top Hat Rose.
Danny Torrence - fascinating!
I am waiting patiently for the best book on earth!!
This book is not the scarest book he has writen. Kind of predictable. It was worth the read if you like to attend AA.
This has been my favorite audiobook so far. I LOVED it!!!
A tie between Dan and Abra. I feel as though I grew a relationship with Dan and his battle with alcoholism, as I battled the same disease and continue to struggle with it. Abra being so innocent at times, and then terrifying in other points of the book, I related with her also.
I haven't but would love to.
The True Knot or Steam.
I HIGHLY recommend this book to Stephen King fans or anyone who enjoys a good thrill. King knows how to make you feel as though someone is standing behind you, you can feel the heat from breath on your neck, but when you turn around...no one is there.
Spoiler AlertI listened to this entire book, including the author’s epilog where King is a bit defensive of his writing style today. He reminds readers that he was a different person back in the first two decades of his career and nothing can top the first scary story we read during adolescents. He has a point. It mostly answered my question about his work. Why I find everything he has written past the 90’s ridiculous, immature and shallow. My taste in literature has changed. What thrilled me in my tens, twenties and even thirties has evolved along with my perception and expectations. King’s writing style is still geared to the adolescent and perhaps to the one within us “baby boomers.” He tries anyway; I have to give him credit for trying. Will Patton’s narration is what kept me motivated to endure nineteen annoying hours of Doctor Sleep. At times I wanted to discard this book because it was as unbearable as wearing an itchy wool sweater on a scorching August afternoon. For a sequel to The Shinning, it lacks most of what was in that story. Wendy has a couple of paragraphs and we are moved swiftly to a forty something Dan Torrance recovering alcoholic with a dead mother. His last hangover is lived and relived through out the book. Repation is rife through out this story. A good editor would have gutted fifty percent of its contents. Themes from his other novels are used in a recycled manner to keep the plot moving when it runs into dead ends. You will see shades of Dream Catcher with the mental lock boxes and file cabinets. Tommyknockers with the Hollow Demons existing on the essence of children that have ESP gifts. In the case of the antagonist, Rose The Hat wanting to keep the young protagonist Abra drugged docile and confined in order for herself and other members of The True Knot clan (hollow demons) to live off her “steam” like a milking cow. Hearts in Atlantis pops up with a character named Baseball Boy that the True Knot kidnaps from a little league game. After his torture and burial, including his baseball mitt with his name written on it, 13-year-old Abra sees his face in the newspaper among many missing children and sees what happened to him and his mitt. Contacting Dan while under the impression he is Tony (Dan’s childhood invisible friend that turned out to be a young teenage version of himself), Dan and Abra hook up giving the readers constant reminders that their difference in age and gender would only be understood as molester and victim if anyone found out. Abra mentally locates baseball boy’s body. Dan digs up his grave and brings back the mitt to Abra so she can hold it and channel what the boy went through and who killed him. King’s book IT shows up with images of Rose’s jaunty black hat in a gutter. Rose’s hat and how she wears it gets old quickly in this book. Towards the end, a plot device from The Green Mile is used when Dan sucks up Abra’s cancer riddled “Momo” aka great grandmother’s red misty last breath at the hospice. During a tedious trip to Colorado, Dan becomes ill and exhausted until the big stand off when he exhales out momo and kills off Rose’s clan with the deadly red misty breath. Dan quickly recovers once the dead momo and her cancer leave his body. Does any of this sound familiar? Why do these aging RV driving, steam inhaling from canisters filled with the left over ESP gifts of murdered children need and want Abra and children like her? In order to retain youth and health. Some members are over a millennium old, like Grandpa Flick that can no longer hold his fudge (King’s words, not mine.) How do they die? An ordinary bullet or measles they caught while inhaling the baseball boy’s steam is all that’s needed. When they die, they “cycle.” Their body starts to disappear until nothing is left but their clothing. Like War of the Worlds. Doctor Death could be an allegory or veiled attempt of riffing on the elderly that do anything and everything to sustain their life, therefore sucking up the taxable/tangible resources of the young and destroying them. The drowning man theory. Don’t try and save him; He will drown you along with him. I disliked this book for the reasons listed in most of the 1 star reviews. King writes trashy novels that try to retain innocence. Some I have enjoyed, some not.
The combination of a great story and a masterful performance by Will Patton made this novel a real page turner.
This book reminds me a little of IT. Rose is just as scary as the clown. She's the stuff of nightmares.
This is the first novel novel I've listened to performed by Mr Patton.
I listen to books at night before I go to sleep. Dr Sleep was addictive and I hated to stop,
I am now afraid of old people in RV's. This book was a surprise in many ways. It is the sequel to The Shining with the child Danny now as an adult. There are more twists and turns and unexpected joy and sorrow than I've read in a while. Stephen King is a master at the craft of having the evil creatures just keep on coming at you. This is so well done, and so unexpected, you can't put it down.
All the references to Shining and some of his other books.
The Shining because this is the son from that book
The Shining Part 2
Wonderful, Wonderful, Wonderful
captivating transfixing imaginative
None - because it is a follow up to The Shinning
Will Patton's performance was wonderful. He had a very distinct voice and infliction for each character. There was never any question as to which character was thinking or speaking, which made my Doctor Sleep imaginary world more rich.
The entire novel was moving. Danny's journey, Abra's relationship with Danny and her journey, the journey of the True Not. Even though the True Not were the protagonist in this novel, you still cannot help but have some sympathy for them - having been "alive" for so long and fighting to remain.
Stephen King and his magical, mystery draw of stories... I hope it is bottomless.
This book is full of coincidences. For me, it was that just two weeks ago I had finished The Shining for the very first time without having even seen the film. It's rare when I find a book that actually made me feel so uneasy alone at home late at night. I was enthralled by the setting, the feeling of isolation, and the sense of deep despair within the characters.
So I was more than surprised and interested when I discovered that just finishing this masterpiece there was a brand new continuation of the story waiting for me. However, this is not quite the same story as the Shining. Not even close. The scared helpless boy has aged and is now his own man. He's in our own time now, experiencing the same events that most of us have. He's gone through hell and back before his voice even cracked yet at least to me he has became more and more relate-able. He starts the book with a giant monkey on his back and gets us to cheer for him as he tries to recover.
But this is not the Shining. There is no sense of isolation, no growing sense of dread, not even that great a sense of danger. We know what the Shining is (assuming you have read the previous book/seen the movie), we know whats out there, and everything is pretty much explained to the point where its no longer mysterious. But despite that Doctor Sleep manages to be entertaining on its own as a novel, and one that I finished after only a couple of days.
As an avid audiobook listener I know as most of you do that the narrator is almost as important as the subject material in these productions. He can make or break the immersion and be the deciding factor in whether we finish (or buy) the book or not. Will Patton's performance in Doctor Sleep is a rare treat to behold. It's rare that I get to listen to someone give a performance of such inflection and emotion. Convincingly playing over a dozen characters can't be easy, but Will manages it with obvious passion and skill.
So thanks Steven. Thanks for revisiting Dan Torrence. And thank you Will Patton for your excellent performance. While there were a few moments in the book that had me furrowing my brow in incredulity, Doctor Sleep is a book I'd recommend to anyone that has ever heard of Steven King or The Shining.
Didn't read the print version. However, King's at his best a storyteller, and most of his books translate into audiobooks well.
When King includes addiction and recovery into his plots, it's obvious that he has gone through the experience personally. As a fellow recovering alcoholic/addict, I appreciate the attention to detail and honesty that most books that include addicted or recovering protaganists lack.
Dan, the lead character, Abra, Conchita, and the old man Billy. The girl's parents were a little two-dimensional, compared to some of the others. And his villains weren't nearly as scary as some of his previous ones have been, but personally I liked it better that way. King's at his best (IMO) when he's writing more fantasy than horror. I especially like the fact that, in his books, supernatural powers are as likely to be good than evil.
The Shining II? Son of the Shining? Just kidding. I respect the fact that he didn't include the Shining in the title, which probably would have helped sell books.
Some of King's recent books have fallen short of his abilities, I think. This one is up there with his best; the original Shining, The Gunslinger series, Shawshank Redemption, and the Stand. Most horror writers have one story that they keep repeating with only cosmetic changes, but Stephen King seems to be able to keep coming up with original ideas.
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