Thursday, 22 August 2013

Unfeasibly excited about a visit from the doctor...

Are you as excited as I am about the next King release, ‘Doctor Sleep?

Released next month (September 2013), the sequel to the classic 1977 novel ‘The Shining’ (which was only Stephen’s third novel, but already showed so much of what we have come to perceive as ‘classic King’), is long-awaited and so eagerly anticipated that the first chapter has already been released on the Stephen King Books super fan area of their Facebook page (see here).

I have wondered, over the years, what happened to Danny Torrance; has he grown up, led a ‘normal’ life, and lost his ‘shining’ ability? Or did he become his father, a low-achieving alcoholic?

 Whenever I reread this book (or watch the controversial-in-King-circles movie – sorry but I love it), I feel oddly dissatisfied that I didn’t find out more about him, and where he ended up.  I can’t wait to find out, but I am oddly worried that I will end up hating the man he becomes. Worse than this, though, I worry that I will feel indifferent about him. I hope not, the Danny of ‘The Shining’ is a great character, so I hope this new offering pulls off the extreme and allows a surge of emotion, even if just pity, towards the character, and most of all I hope that little Danny Torrance is recognisable somewhere within Dan, his grown-up self. There is something extra thrilling about waiting for a sequel, that return to familiar settings and characters that you feel are a part of your own history if you have read the previous book enough, so the risk of let down is far greater in this instance.

 What do you think? Can King resurrect and improve on his own masterpiece? Or can ‘Doctor Sleep’ never live up to the brilliance of ‘The Shining’?

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