• Publication date: 22 May 2018

• Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton

• Language: English

• ASIN: B0792D4MWR

The Blurb

When an eleven-year-old boy is found murdered in a town park, reliable eyewitnesses undeniably point to the town’s popular Little League coach, Terry Maitland, as the culprit. DNA evidence and fingerprints confirm the crime was committed by this well-loved family man.

Horrified by the brutal killing, Detective Ralph Anderson, whose own son was once coached by Maitland, orders the suspect to be arrested in a public spectacle. But Maitland has an alibi. And further research confirms he was indeed out of town that day.

As Anderson and the District Attorney trace the clues, the investigation expands from Ohio to Texas. And as horrifying answers begin to emerge, so King’s propulsive story of almost unbearable suspense kicks into high gear.

Terry Maitland seems like a nice guy but there is one rock-hard fact, as unassailable as gravity: a man cannot be in two places at the same time. Can he?

I usually maintain that I’m a huge fan of Stephen King and indeed I am. I’m a huge fan of the way he writes. I’m a huge fan of some of his books, sad to say that this book isn’t one of them.

In my opinion, Stephen King is one of the greatest writers of our time. As far as descriptive characterisation is concerned, he is one of the very best. He writes about each character in his novels, even peripheral characters, in such a way that I always feel that I could happily read an entire novel just about that one character and then he goes onto to do the same to them all.

This novel, started out reasonably well. The subject matter though – the gruesome murder of a young boy – is not for the faint hearted. While fans of Stephen King wouldn’t expect his books to be cosy mysteries, I did feel that the graphic details of the murder were a tad gratuitous. King probably wanted to set the scene to paint the picture of an outraged community who when learning about the murder allegedly by the local football coach Terry Maitland who was known to all, reacted in a very angry way.

The first half of the book does proceed along in a most fascinating way. I was gripped and enjoying the read. The steady police procedural and the work of the team of detectives and forensic all pointing to the guilt of Terry Maitland, except that Maitland had a rock solid alibi for the time of the murder.

About half way through, the story veers off into weird fantasy and that was it for me. No doubt fans of this kind of writing from King will appreciate it but it wasn’t for me.

I prefer the more or less straight psychological thriller as written by Stephen King such as Mercy, The Shining or even dystopian such as The Stand, which is one of my all time favourite books. I also enjoyed 11/22/63

Once his books start to figure highly unlikely, ghoulish monster figures then I lose interest in them.

I don’t usually include books I haven’t enjoyed on my blog but I doubt very much that Stephen King would read anything I’ve written here and he’s so hugely popular that one review like this wouldn’t have any affect on his sales.

Maybe my expectations were just too high. I couldn’t wait to open the book when it arrived. I added it to my 20 Books Of Summer Reading challenge.

I’ve read a number of King’s books that I have enjoyed but still have quite a few books of his that I haven’t yet read.

In my opinion- not one of his best. Could have been good. Wasn’t for me.

To Purchase from Amazon UK

To Purchase from Amazon US

To Purchase from Waterstones

About The Author

Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. His first crime thriller featuring Bill Hodges, MR MERCEDES, won the Edgar Award for best novel and was shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger Award. Both MR MERCEDES and END OF WATCH received the Goodreads Choice Award for the Best Mystery and Thriller of 2014 and 2016 respectively.

King co-wrote the bestselling novel Sleeping Beauties with his son Owen King, and many of King’s books have been turned into celebrated films and television series including The Shawshank Redemption, Gerald’s Game and It.

King was the recipient of America’s prestigious 2014 National Medal of Arts and the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for distinguished contribution to American Letters. In 2007 he also won the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America. He lives with his wife Tabitha King in Maine.