When we think of writers who write horror novels, there is one author that probably springs to mind of everyone, Stephen King. Whether you like him or not, and I love most of his work with the exception of The Dark Tower series as I could just never get into it, he is a very successful writer. In 1977, Stephen King had his third novel, and first hardback bestseller, published; The Shining. This was later turned into a film and later again in a television mini-series. In 2013, Stephen King wrote a sequel and called it Doctor Sleep.
Doctor Sleep is the sequel to Stephen King’s best-selling 1977 novel ‘The Shining’ and takes a look at the life of Danny Torrance, 35 years after he survived the terrible events at the Overlook Hotel.
Danny Torrance was born with a physic ability known as “The Shining”. Some 35 years ago, in the late 70s, his violent, alcoholic father died in the tragic events that occurred at the Overlook Hotel. After the hotel burned down and the death of his mother, Danny has been drifting throughout America trying to rid himself of the ghosts of the past. Eventually he settles down with a job in a nursing home and he becomes known as Doctor Sleep as he helps the dying make a peaceful transition between life and death.
Whilst Danny has been drifting and now helping people in a nursing home, there has been another group of people travelling around America – The True Knot. The True Knot travel around in a convoy of RV’s (Recreational Vehicles). They blend in and look like every-day, normal but mostly older travellers but they have been around for hundreds of years. To continue their survival and be able to regenerate themselves they travel around and find children that have a touch of The Shining, torturing them to their death to enable them to steal their gift. They are evil, lethal and extremely dangerous.
Abra Stone has been born with the gift of The Shining and she is very powerful. From just a few days old she has been reaching out to Danny, giving him messages until one day Danny comes to realise that the True Knot are coming for her. This is the beginning of the fight to save her, and himself.
Overall, Doctor Sleep is an excellent book. Whilst this is the sequel to a brilliant book, it doesn’t actually matter if you have read The Shining or seen the film (although I do recommend reading The Shining, it is a great read) as you can follow Doctor Sleep without it.
Danny’s experience has seen him grow up with a whole set of new problems. He is trying to deal with them to stop him becoming like his violent, alcoholic father. A young girl is reaching out to him for help and he must stand with her to save her life and try to put the past behind him.
Doctor Sleep is an extremely well-written chilling read. It is full of excitement, thrills and suspense and I could not put the book down. As a big fan of the Master or Horror, Stephen King, I wasn’t sure how a sequel to a book written 35 years previously would work, but is does and I loved it, I think it is probably one of King’s better books and it is a brilliant sequel.
Doctor Sleep is a chilling tale of good versus evil, but as only Stephen King can expertly deliver.
Highly recommended! A must for all Stephen King fans and new readers of his work (although I would recommend reading The Shining first), a story that will thrill you! Stephen King at his best.
RRP: £19.99 (Hardback) / £9.99 (Paperback) £4.99 (Kindle)
Available to buy from Amazon here.