Book: Joyland by Stephen King

By admin
04 October 2013

The master of horror writing a murder-mystery crime novel? You betcha! And it’s one of King’s finest too.

It’s 1973 when our freshly heartbroken protagonist, 21-year-old Devin Jones, drops out of university and treks to muggy North Carolina to work at a small-town amusement park, Joyland. The novel is both a coming-of-age tale and King’s second attempt at a straight-up crime novel, the first being 2005’s The Colorado Kid which was made into the TV series Haven. While at Joyland, Devin stumbles onto a mystery the police have long given up on: the ghost haunting the House of Horrors ride. While the story of the young woman whose throat was slit mid-ride is legendary in the town, her killer has never been found. It might be a crime novel but King’s fans will appreciate that he’s not lost touch with his eerie, macabre roots – we’ve got the haunted House of Horrors, a kid with psychic abilities and a fairly brutal death scene. As the carnival folk would say, “Step right up.” Rating 4/5

- Jared Orlin

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