Saturday, September 28, 2013

Book Review: Doctor Sleep

Doctor Sleep (The Shining, #2)Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Shining has always been among my favorite Stephen King books (and I loved the movie too). Doctor Sleep is a continuation or a sequel, so to speak. The book is all about what happens to Dan Torrance after what happened at The Overlook Hotel.

After what happened at The Overlook Hotel, Dan and his mother were doing the best they can. Things were okay until Danny saw someone from the Overlook in his bathroom. It appears the spirits of the hotel are still after him. Things have never been easy for Danny and as he grew up, he started drifting and drinking. After swearing that he will never be like his father, Dan became a drunk just like him.

He hits rock bottom one morning when he wakes up in a woman's cramped apartment and took some of her money. He reaches a town called Frazier and decides he wants to make a new start there. He finds temporary work at the town common and goes on to work at the hospice where he helps patients to pass over. He also gets himself some help and joins AA. It is at one of those AA meetings that he meets the name Abra. 

Abra is a very special young girl -- the daughter of Lucy and Dave Stone and the great-granddaughter of a poet and writer. Abra has the shining too; only her shining makes Dan's seem like almost nothing. Abra manages to connect with Dan on the very day she was born, it seems. The two communicate once in a while through their special type of connection. Things start to become rather complicated when she "sees" a murder -- a boy was tortured and brutally killed by a group of people.

The True Knot is a group of very scary people -- or at least, they used to be people. They search far and wide for children who have the shine and call them steamheads. They then kidnap them, torture them and inhale their "steam" or essence and that is what sustains them. True Know has been around for centuries and breathing steam helps them to survive as long as they have. They are rich and they know how to keep out of the limelight so they can be free to hunt their special prey. Their leader, Rose, gets a strong whiff of Abra and wants to go after her.

Abra is in trouble and Danny needs to help her. Together with a few friends, Dan and Abra face the True Knot in a battle that may destroy them all.

Doctor Sleep is an exciting read. Although the book focuses on what happens to Danny Torrance after The Shining, it is a book that can be read all on its own. However, it will make things more thrilling to read The Shining if you haven't already done so.

I have to admit that this book is not as scary as The Shining (that book gave me scary dreams for days after I read it -- same with the movie after I watched it). That being said, Doctor Sleep is a very good story on its own. But then, I like Stephen King so I may be pretty biased here.



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