Review: Later by Stephen King


There are plenty of drawbacks to being a kid; check it out. Zits, the agony of choosing the right clothes to wear to school so you don’t get laughed at, and the mystery of girls are only three of them.

While it may be part of the Hard Case Crime series, Stephen King’s narrator Jamie keeps reminding us that it’s really a horror story.

Take Jamie at his word.

Jamie sees dead people — not like the kid in The Sixth Sense mind you. In Jamie’s case most of the people he sees know they’re dead and gradually begin to fade away. Jamie’s has this gift since he was a young boy, using it to help a woman tell her husband where to find her misplaced jewelry and talking to the spirit of a dead author her mother works with to get the details on the final book in a best-selling series that the author died before finishing.

Those things may seem a bit tame in the world of ghost stories. But, again, Jamie keeps reminding us that bad things happen Later.

Stephen King has always been a master of getting inside the head of his younger characters and Later is no exception. King puts his own twist on the coming of age story — yes, Jamie comes of age here, but again, this is a horror novel. Bad stuff is on the horizon and there are consequences to what Jamie is doing and his gift at seeing dead people.

The best testament I can give his story is that my daughter hit the right buttons to pre-purchase it for my on my Kindle, so I saw the percentage slowly going up as I read the story. Forgetting that the book might have an excerpt from other books in the Hard Case Crime world and blurbs to entice me to read others, I so enthralled with the story and Jamie’s world that I didn’t see the big twist coming, nor was I necessarily ready for the story to end. Yes, we come to an ending (a solid one) and I know that King is often criticized for his lack of solid endings. But I couldn’t help but feel that while one chapter of Jamie’s story had been told, I wouldn’t mind if King decided to visit with Jamie and his mother again in the future.


Filed under book review, review

2 responses to “Review: Later by Stephen King

  1. Looking forward to this. King’s first HCC book was a big disappointment, but the amusement park one was excellent.

  2. Pingback: Top Ten Tuesday: Favorites (And Not Favorites) of 2021 | Nashville Book Worm

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