Trying Real Hard to Read This Book

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FireGurl26

Deleted User
Dec 20, 2011
93
445
Michigan
#1
I have picked this book up and started reading about 5 times now. Time goes by between each attempt. I don't understand why the first 20 or so pages just do not sink into my mind. It's like I can't envision the story being told or something. Very strange. This is the only book by King that I do this with. Anyone else have a hard time following this story? Maybe it was because it is co-written with Peter Straub?
 

GNTLGNT

The idiot is IN
Jun 15, 2007
80,427
303,355
56
Cambridge, Ohio
#2
...it's not the collaboration effort that does it...for my part, it took me a bit to get into the flow, just because I was expecting the old warm feeling from The Talisman to envelope me again-and it didn't...this book isn't as Territory-centric for me, but I still like it very much...and it has Henry, one of favorite characters of all time...
 

Walter Oobleck

keeps coming back...or going, and going, and going
Mar 6, 2013
11,749
34,769
#3
There seemed to be some sort of shift around page fifty or so. I liked the fly-over idea...or fly-on-the-wall idea...and that happens in the first fifty pages. Maybe because the story is not focused through one single character for those pages the reader senses a distance and it is therefore difficult to draw close to the story. But like GNTLGNT/Scott...dunno is he is a two tee Scott or a one tee...I think two...anyway, like he said, the character of Henry is a blast, as are the Thunder Five and all the rest. Wendell Green...I think that is the name of the reporter...is a character one can easily despise...and that old coot in the home. He's a piece-of-work. I enjoyed that it takes place in Wisconsin and although I've been through the area more than a few times, I've never had occasion to seek out any of the places therein. That might could have helped me a bit to stay focused on the story. If you get the chance, tell me/us what your take on the "eye" of the story opener is...as in, what, a crow? a bee? or just a spirit? I might have had a definite opinion on what the eye-piece is in that opener but time has taken the shine off that conclusion.
 

doowopgirl

very avid fan
Aug 7, 2009
6,571
22,378
60
dublin ireland
#5
I liked the fly over idea straight off, but it had been a looong time between The Talisman and The Black House so Ikind of saw them as very different stories. I though ot was populated by wonderful characters. The Thunder Five my favorites. Not an easy read, but ultimately very satisfying.
 

Lisey Landon

Well-Known Member
May 20, 2009
754
3,960
Germany
#8
I had this problem with The Talisman, but Black House just kept rolling on.
I was more than a little annoyed and impatient with Old Traveling Jack for a long time, though. But I will not tell you why, no spoilers from me today. Enjoy the book, please don't give up! :)

My worst case "can not get through this book" experience was John Irving's Son of the Circus. I tried for almost 3 years, I started in Norwegian, then English, then back to Norwegian, back to English - I could just not finish. Then I made a plan, and got through the first 150 pages, and it ended up being one of my all time favorite books.
 

booklover72

very strange person
Jan 12, 2014
731
2,975
45
Dublin
#10
I have picked this book up and started reading about 5 times now. Time goes by between each attempt. I don't understand why the first 20 or so pages just do not sink into my mind. It's like I can't envision the story being told or something. Very strange. This is the only book by King that I do this with. Anyone else have a hard time following this story? Maybe it was because it is co-written with Peter Straub?
hi

i am having the same problem 3 times i have tried to read this book and couldn't i don't know what it is. has anyone read it, is it worth keep on reading
 

EMARX

Well-Known Member
Feb 27, 2009
2,971
15,761
#12
I had this problem with The Talisman, but Black House just kept rolling on.
I was more than a little annoyed and impatient with Old Traveling Jack for a long time, though. But I will not tell you why, no spoilers from me today. Enjoy the book, please don't give up! :)

My worst case "can not get through this book" experience was John Irving's Son of the Circus. I tried for almost 3 years, I started in Norwegian, then English, then back to Norwegian, back to English - I could just not finish. Then I made a plan, and got through the first 150 pages, and it ended up being one of my all time favorite books.
I found the same issue with The Talisman. And it was the prose style I found hard to digest. But some years ago I found an unabridged audio book and that was my ticket in to the park, so to speak. Black House was much less of a grind for me.

It's odd but A Son of the Circus was a breeze for me. But Koko by Peter Straub literally took me decades and dozens of tries, and then I finally did it and wondered why it took so long.
 

Lisey Landon

Well-Known Member
May 20, 2009
754
3,960
Germany
#14
I found the same issue with The Talisman. And it was the prose style I found hard to digest. But some years ago I found an unabridged audio book and that was my ticket in to the park, so to speak. Black House was much less of a grind for me.

It's odd but A Son of the Circus was a breeze for me. But Koko by Peter Straub literally took me decades and dozens of tries, and then I finally did it and wondered why it took so long.
Again we are totally opposite, for me Koko kept me intrigued from start to finish. Wonderful books, both Son of... and Koko!
 

guido tkp

Well-Known Member
Oct 1, 2009
2,632
474
outside the dome
#15
weirdly...i 'get' the feeling so many have described to BH...but just not for this one for the most part...

mine ??

'insomnia'...

and, to a lesser extent, DT 5...then moreso 6...then definately 7...they all fell into that void: in fact, although i eagerly bought DT7 the day it came out, it was nearly 6 months later before i even cracked it open...'cause 6 had left such a bad taste...and it took me a long time, another almost six months, to finish 7...

it was like pulling teeth...

i know...i know: i'm very much in the minority on those 3...but, dang it...there's something not quite right about them at all...jus' sayin'

but none were anywhere near as bad as insomnia...that, overall, took me over 2 years...

BH, however, worked fine with me up an until nearing the end...when it kinda went into a...psuedo DT mode...and, much like the beginning chapters of W&G, felt forced and unnatural...sorry

now...the middle part ? the part that was supposed to be the only part of the book ??

may very well be best stuff he's ever written !

oddly, speaking of PS (another of my very favorite authors)...i found Koko to be a blast: i enjoyed immensely...but...the other two in the 'trilogy' ??? whew !
 

MandarkC

Active Member
Mar 11, 2014
26
93
London, United Kingdom
#16
I have picked this book up and started reading about 5 times now. Time goes by between each attempt. I don't understand why the first 20 or so pages just do not sink into my mind. It's like I can't envision the story being told or something. Very strange. This is the only book by King that I do this with. Anyone else have a hard time following this story? Maybe it was because it is co-written with Peter Straub?
Hahha my book for this from SK is actually Misery. Didn't like it and took forever to get through and I skipped a lot of parts because I thought it was slow.

But I also 'get' what you mean. I think the best way to really read this would be to consider it a separate book from The Talisman that you discovered linked back to Jack Sawyer. I didn't have a problem with either books though. Swallowed them whole. I love them...then again, I love all SK's books that I've read so far...apart from Misery. And maybe the Regulators.
 

Sunlight Gardener

Well-Known Member
Jul 22, 2013
369
1,213
#17
I love reading people's different takes on books that didn't do it for them. I frickin' loved the Regulators and I have seen tons of people on here who hate it, lol. The Talisman is what started me on my SK quest. That book is and will be at or near the top of my SK books list. I swallowed that book up like I was starving to death.

On Black House I had to work to temper my expectations because I knew it could never compare to the Talisman for me. Once I got my mind right I enjoyed it. I wouldn't say it was one of my favorite SK books but it had some interesting things in it, especially all the Dark Tower tie ins. And the Thunder 5, great characters.
 
Apr 7, 2014
8
35
32
#18
Stick with it! After reading The Talisman I was kinda disappointed a bit when i started Black House. I missed the territories (and Wolf still :( .. and it just didnt seem the same. BUT just over halfway through things really picked up and I ended up reading the last 250 odd pages yesterday! It was brill. The ending had me in goosebumps.
Havnt read any of the Dark Tower series yet.. but halfway through Black House I went to Waterstones and bought The Gunslinger :) Cant wait to start it tomorrow. I was planning on starting Mr Mercedes the day of release but think I'll be too engrossed in the Dark Tower series lol :)
 

Kurben

The Fool on the Hill
Apr 12, 2014
8,615
56,556
53
sweden
#19
Black house is one of those i didnt finish. Mostly because when it came it was a lot to do and read besides that one. I've tried two more times but haven't gone far into the book. Somehow the first pages doesn't capture me. Don't know why. Usually, the ones i have troubles with, like Tommyknockers and Insomnia, i finish at least but Black House stands there on the shelf and stares at me and gives me a bad consscience for not giving it a fair chance. And the worst part is that the book is right. I havent given it a chance, yet at least.
 

Kingfisher

Well-Known Member
Jan 1, 2015
55
273
26
#20
It took me awhile to finish Black House. I remember hearing about it immediately after finishing The Talisman and was like, oh gosh! The Talisman is one of my most treasured books of all time, it's so heart achingly sweet and genuine in its presentation.

I found Black House to be bankrupt. I took nothing away from it, the characters felt like bizarre caricatures and cardboard cutouts. It's absolutely bizarre how King could summon up so uncharacteristically ugly in terms of characterization and motivation. It's almost as if everything the villain did was so hamfistedly wretched that King was like 'Hate him! This is the good, this is the bad!'. There is no grey and it falls flat.
 
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