My Thoughts on the Novel *SPOILERS*

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Ms. Mod
Administrator
Jul 10, 2006
49,349
135,928
Maine
I don't know how to create a spoiler so I'm telling people ahead of time there's a spoiler.

I wouldn't be able to continue living happily (relatively speaking) if I thought that the person in my family who was murdered not only died in one of the worst ways I can imagine while his family watched it happen - along with the rest of the country, most of whom barely register their reactions to Sep-11 anymore (compared to my family anyway) - but also find out he went to that nightmarish hell described in 'Mary's Revival.'
But then again, that's what makes it a horror story. If they'd found out you go to heaven, the ending would not be classified as true horror.
I like horror bc it's more realistic than what you wish for that you know isn't going to happen.
Other times I like happy endings, but I relate to horror best.
There's a spoiler warning in the thread title so not as much of an issue but for future reference to do a spoiler, highlight the text you want hidden and then go to the formatting area above the text box and select the 4th icon from the right and select Spoiler from the drop down menu. You can either write in a description of the spoiler or just leave it blank and click on continue. Your text should then be hidden. You can do a Preview to make sure before hitting Post Reply.

This is what the icon looks like:

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Neil W

Well-Known Member
May 27, 2008
1,203
2,590
Isle of Wight UK
I came to this novel completely cold, pleasingly - I knew nothing about what was in it and didn't even read the dustjacket flap. So I had no idea where it was going for a long time.

I loved the characters and the telling of Jamie's story. I found there to be a great deal of love, and light, and warmth in the telling of his childhood, his discovery of music, and his first love: I thought all of that was beautiful. Even his heroin addiction ended up positive after his cure.

Charles' spiralling obsession and increasingly dark experimentation came gradually and late, even though presaged in the opening section. Despite the portents and foreshadowing over what was to come, I hoped for some sort of salvation, rescue, or the like - for Jamie to come up with some sort of solution to avoid the worst of what was on the other side of that door.

Instead, there was one of the bleakest resolutions to one of SK's novels that I can recall: everyone - EVERYONE - gets a grimly unhappy payoff and, given the love which went into writing them all, and I am deeply saddened.

I'm not disappointed or angry: the ending is fitting and, somehow, right. But I had hoped that characters that I had come to care for would have enjoyed a less bleak ending to their individual tales. I found the religion/faith element interesting (I am not a believer), and it struck me as, ultimately, a very angry book, or a book which came from a very angry place (if there is a difference. I think there may be).

A writer owns his characters, but they and the story often dictate their fate. I wonder how much of their fate SK feels was within his discretion, or how much was inevitable from the get-go? Sometime I am very aware of SK setting out the construction blocks of his story from the start: here this was not not very obvious (hindsight illuminates the importance of the vocal cure, the car accident, smoking etc.) and I had a much greater sense that SK was letting the narrative take him where it would, rather than exercising particular direction over it.

At the risk of getting hauled over the coals, I felt the satanic ants were somewhat lame.
 

Lord Tyrion

Well-Known Member
Oct 24, 2013
1,582
6,256
I came to this novel completely cold, pleasingly - I knew nothing about what was in it and didn't even read the dustjacket flap. So I had no idea where it was going for a long time.

I loved the characters and the telling of Jamie's story. I found there to be a great deal of love, and light, and warmth in the telling of his childhood, his discovery of music, and his first love: I thought all of that was beautiful. Even his heroin addiction ended up positive after his cure.

Charles' spiralling obsession and increasingly dark experimentation came gradually and late, even though presaged in the opening section. Despite the portents and foreshadowing over what was to come, I hoped for some sort of salvation, rescue, or the like - for Jamie to come up with some sort of solution to avoid the worst of what was on the other side of that door.

Instead, there was one of the bleakest resolutions to one of SK's novels that I can recall: everyone - EVERYONE - gets a grimly unhappy payoff and, given the love which went into writing them all, and I am deeply saddened.

I'm not disappointed or angry: the ending is fitting and, somehow, right. But I had hoped that characters that I had come to care for would have enjoyed a less bleak ending to their individual tales. I found the religion/faith element interesting (I am not a believer), and it struck me as, ultimately, a very angry book, or a book which came from a very angry place (if there is a difference. I think there may be).

A writer owns his characters, but they and the story often dictate their fate. I wonder how much of their fate SK feels was within his discretion, or how much was inevitable from the get-go? Sometime I am very aware of SK setting out the construction blocks of his story from the start: here this was not not very obvious (hindsight illuminates the importance of the vocal cure, the car accident, smoking etc.) and I had a much greater sense that SK was letting the narrative take him where it would, rather than exercising particular direction over it.

At the risk of getting hauled over the coals, I felt the satanic ants were somewhat lame.
I pretty much agree with you. Everything outside of the ants chapter was great story telling. I read this story cold as well, and I had no idea what to expect. The story felt natural and I couldn't put the book down.

Though I did not like the Revival chapter, the rest of the story was so good, that it was still a great story.
 

blunthead

Well-Known Member
Aug 2, 2006
80,756
195,396
Atlanta GA
Hi.

I understand people of the congregation getting all bent out of shape when Jacob did the Terrible Sermon. People have their beliefs and it's painful or infuriating for someone to deny your beliefs.

What I thought was even more disturbing was Roy Easterbook saying to Jacobs and the congregation the wife was drunk and reeked of whiskey ergo, she is to blame for the car accident and the three deaths. I don't think saying something like that to a man half mad with grief helps a whole he11 of a lot. Plus, it's cruel IMO.

(We never did find out if that was true or not, did we? That she was drunk driving?)

Peace.
No, we don't know if she had been drinking, nor whose whiskey it even was; this not being an oversight on sK's part, imho, but meant as food for thought.
 

craigthered

New Member
Jan 4, 2015
4
16
40
I finished the book yesterday after a pretty marathon session- well over half the book in one sitting. I'll take it as a good sign that it made me keep reading but the build up was better than the ending IMO
and i didn't think the Lovecraft homage ending was scary-King did alie ancient evils better with Pennywise.

As a side note- did anyone think of Metallica's inclusion in the grafitti being an on oblique reference to their track "The Thing That Should Not be?" Which itself has heavily Lovecraftian lyrical content?

As I read it quickly, could anyone explain the nature of the "secret" lightning to me- was the power to "heal" Jacobs had obtained by invoking forces used by the banned book and occult rituals....or has my quick reading meant I am missing the point? :a11:
 

SamHall

New Member
Jan 7, 2015
4
14
53
**** SPOILERS******I too never really thought of The Rev as a bad guy... in fact he seemed very reasonable and pleasant and caring until the very end. I also don't understand why the healed by virtue of getting some glimpse of the hideous afterlife that awaits, decide to kill themselves in such large quantities, that seems incongruous to me. I did enjoy the book immensely just because I love the dialogue and the way King writes has always been for me.
 

Sunlight Gardener

Well-Known Member
Jul 22, 2013
373
1,260
Just finished it 5 minutes ago. Whew....dark, dark story. In some parts I breezed through reading it. Yet there were other parts when I dragged through reading. And it wasn't that I was bored. I think a big part of it was that I knew that there was nothing but doom around every corner. I needed periodic "recharges" before tackling any more of it. It just got gloomier and gloomier as it went on.

Let me say that I thought it was a good story and I found it interesting. I just didn't find it particularly pleasurable. Like someone said earlier, it had a similar feel after reading Pet Semetary, but with Pet Semetary it was worse. There is a reason I didn't even attempt to re-read Pet Semetary for 20 years after I read it the first time. Revival wasn't to that level of darkness, but it will be probably be a good while before I read it a second time.
 

craigthered

New Member
Jan 4, 2015
4
16
40
Full Dark, No Stars was great. I usually am not too huge a fan of the short stories collections but that one was great!
 

notebookgirl

Well-Known Member
Oct 8, 2013
853
4,884
Somewhere over the Rainbow
I pretty much agree with you. Everything outside of the ants chapter was great story telling. I read this story cold as well, and I had no idea what to expect. The story felt natural and I couldn't put the book down.

Though I did not like the Revival chapter, the rest of the story was so good, that it was still a great story.
Totally agree with both of you. I went in cold too. I really didn't know much about it. It was a good story.
 
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