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text 2018-09-24 17:00
Wild Card Selection-Harry Adam Knight!
Slimer - John Brosnan,Phil Kettle,Harry Adam Knight
The Fungus - Harry Adam Knight,John Brosnan,Leroy Kettle

 

For the Wild Card option I'm choosing author Harry Adam Knight! 

He's the author of two books that don't seem to quite fit my categories. 

 

My first Harry Adam Knight book was SLIMER. 

I'm going to use that book to fill the 

Relics & Curiosities square. 

So, yay!

 

I have Knight's THE FUNGUS coming up soon. 

 

 

 

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review 2018-09-17 15:03
He Was A Good Dog
Cujo - Stephen King

I read Cujo when I was in my teens, but not a lot stayed with me I think because I ended up skimming a lot. I think I was freaked out by some of the things in this book (a man talking easily about raping a woman, another man beating his wife, etc.) and it just caused me to not look too closely at this book. However, this book is old school and somehow still King in his later works. He takes a look at a town, it's citizens, and shows you how things unravel. He is still quite good with kids (oh Tadder). And he plays with a lot of different things in this books, growing up, resentment of parents for children and vice versa, affairs and the aftermath. Through it all though we have a dark energy in the town that wants to be released. I am still amazed that anyone would continue to live in the fictional town of Castle Rock and all of the messed up things that keep happening there. 

 

"Cujo" follows a good dog who unfortunately gets bit by a bat that passes along rabies. The majority of the book follows the countdown to Cujo turning from a good dog to a dog from hell and we get to read (witness) the killings he does. King doesn't just focus on Cujo though. We get insight into Cujo's owners, the Cambers family (Joe and Charity, and their son Brett) and their messed up dynamic. I maybe cheered when a member of this family get killed. Not going to lie.


We also follow the Trenton family (Vic and Donna) who are newcomers to the area, who are raising their four year old son Tad. We get hints that something is up with Donna fairly early on, but then we dive into it more fully and find out that Donna has been having an affair with Steve Kemp. Steve is a failed tennis player and now plays at refurnishing furniture. When Donna sees him for who he is one day, they have an almost violent encounter which leaves Kemp out wanting revenge on Donna. 


We also get peeks into residents of the town of Castle Rock. We follow Sheriff George Bannerman, an elderly resident, the mailman, etc. We also get some looks into infamous Frank Dodd who was in "The Dead Zone." The parts with Dodd reminded me slightly of magical realism elements. 

 

I think King did a good job of balancing what was going on with Cujo and others in this story. This story seems to be a tale of wives in my mind though. We had Charity dealing with the fact that she chose the wrong husband. Joe is crude and brutal with her. And often with their son Brett. She is scared that unless her son breaks free from Joe, he may end up being the same kind of man. When she gets the opportunity to visit her more well to do sister, she jumps at it hoping she can show Brett a different way of life. Things come to a head with these two while away with Charity realizing that her sister has changed, and though she's well to do, still acts as if she is poor. 


Donna realizes that she was too dependent on Vic making her happy and that her falling into an affair with Kemp was a bad idea. When Vic is told about the affair (via a letter sent by Kemp) they have an honest conversation with Donna realizing that she can't really explain what happened or why. She wants to try again and realizes like many do after an affair has passed it was a terrible idea, and it doesn't mean she doesn't love her husband. Watching Donna becoming a super woman in my mind when she finally goes toe to toe with Cujo was astounding. I was holding my breath the whole time. 

 

Kemp was a psycho or at least want to be rapist. I kept hoping that somehow Cujo would teleport himself to where he was and bite him. No dice though.


Vic was okay. I didn't get much of a sense from him in this story. Just a good man trying to do right by his family. King gives you the sense that these two went on and healed, but you don't know since they don't get mention in his other works. 

 

The writing was really good. The flow was too though at times you feel as if the book just stops at an important part and you want it to continue on so you can get back to Donna and Tad in the car, or the police and others figuring out where they are so they can get help. 

 

The ending was sad in a way. We end on what happens to Cujo and his desire to just do right for his man, his woman, and his boy. And that it wasn't really his fault what happened. 

 

 

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review 2018-09-17 14:41
Honestly, it's a 3.5 Star Read
Thinner - Stephen King

It's weird. I think I may have read this book before, but now after finishing it this weekend, I have doubts. I maybe just watched the movie and that's where I was recalling most of my information from. I honestly don't like the Bachman books that much that Stephen King wrote. I recall "The Long Walk" and thought how it made no sense to me and how impossible it would be for teenagers to walk 4 miles an hour. I tried that one day at the gym and had to lightly jog. I also remember reading "The Running Man" and went, eh liked the movie better. So now with "Thinner" I have to say that neither the movie or book impressed me much. You have one man dealing with a curse that is slowly killing him. He blames his wife. A lot. Most of the book slows down in the last 1/3 and I was just bored until the ending.

 

"Thinner" deals with the after effects of Billy Halleck (Bill or William depending on who is speaking to him) running over and killing a Romani woman. FYI, be prepared for King to refer to them as Gypsies. I have learned since I got older that's a derogatory term for Romani people, so I am not using it here in my review besides the first occurrence. Due to the people he knows and a lot of the towns people hating the Romani people, Billy isn't tried for hit and run, instead the case is dismissed. An older man who is the head of the group of Romani people comes up to Bill and touches his cheek and says "thinner." From there Bill starts to lose weight and struggles to push out of his mind hitting and killing the older woman and the man who touched him.

 

Most of the book is Billy justifying what happened and saying how it's not really his fault. Instead it's mostly his wife and the older woman's fault. His wife's fault since she started trying to (makes hand motion) while he was driving and the older woman for not looking both ways. What made me laugh and sigh about though was Billy doesn't take any ownership of the fact that the judge and police officer who helped with things would not have done so if not for him. So you have all three of these men being punished, but it seems as if Billy is the one that got off the lightest. 

 

King does take some time developing the characters. You understand Billy's relationship with his wife and daughter a lot. You also get a look at the secrets a town holds that get revealed when Billy starts going after answers with his doctor, the judge's wife, and the police man. Eventually the book goes sideways when King introduces a friend of Billy's who is going to take care of getting the curse off of him, Ginelli. 


Ginelli is shown to be a bit off. He goes after the Romani people with a laser eyed focus. However, it made no sense to me. He's supposed to be a pretty big crime boss. So why in the world didn't he send forth some underlings? And if they popped up dead then go after them? I don't know. The motivations of him to go toe to toe with the Romani didn't work for me at all. Most of the book slowed down after he showed up and when he was retelling his story to Billy I just didn't care. 

 

The writing is more crude than King's works. There are a lot of racial slurs used in this one that put me off a bit. The flow as I said earlier got really bad when Ginelli gets introduced. The book just drags it seems until we get to the ending.

 

The ending leaves us with Billy as a pale shadow of his former self. He manages to justify to himself what he is about to do and I really ended up loathing him. Of course this being a King book the joke's on him and he has a horrified realization about what his actions have wrought. 

 

 

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text 2018-09-16 17:46
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
Cujo - Stephen King

 

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text 2018-09-16 14:02
Reading progress update: I've read 50%.
Cujo - Stephen King

King does a great job setting up this story. All of the characters are very well developed and you feel pity due to decisions that are made that can affect the other characters in this story. Poor Cujo. 

 

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