Monday, May 6, 2013

The Shining

The ShiningThe Shining by Stephen King
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Recovering alcoholic Jack Torrance takes a job as caretaker of the Overlook Hotel, bringing his family with him. But can even his son Danny's special gift, The Shining, stop him from going mad and butchering his family like other caretakers before him?

Yes, I'm several decades late to the party in reading this but after reading Joe Hill's NOS4A2, I had to read my first non-Dark Tower Stephen King book in years to see how the old man did horror back in the day. I'm not sure this was such a good idea.

This book isn't very long but felt like it took a few ice ages for anything to happen. Sure, there were some creepy parts, most of them involving Jack or Danny and the Overlook's ghosts. I think if I hadn't seen the movie first, the book would have been much more enjoyable for me.

I think the advantage the movie has over the book is that a third of the time isn't spent delving into Jack Torrance's past. In the movie, we know he's balanced precariously on the razor's edge of madness the first instant we see him and no one in their right mind would want to spend any length of time locked up with him. In the book, we witness the downhill slide for hundreds of pages. The biggest advantage the book has over the movie: the mom is hot and not played by Shelley Duvall.

That's all I have to say about that.

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