Stephen King’s latest offering to the Hard Case Crimes series feels more like an episode of Scooby Doo than it does a noir novel.
But it makes absolutely no difference because Joyland is an absolute joy to read.
Seeking to escape the memories of his first love, Devin Jones signs on for the summer at the Joyland theme park in North Carolina. Jones quickly finds himself immersed in the park, making new friends and curious about the history of one of the rides that is reportedly haunted.
Part coming of age story, part supernatural story, part mystery, King’s Joyland is a pure, character driven delight. As with the best King stories, everything is foreshadowed early and paid off before the novel’s final page is turned.
Joyland is one of the most compelling and page-turning novels I’ve read this summer. It’s King doing what King does best — telling a hell of a story, making you want to read just one more page, one more chapter and then feeling a twinge of regret when you reach the end. One of the most satisfying novels I’ve read in a long time and it only goes to show that King hasn’t lost that magic touch.