Stephen King SKELETON CREW Book Review

As you may already know, I am a huge fan of short story collections. I'm also a huge fan of Stephen King so unsurprisingly this is one of my favorite books. This is one of King's first published collections, with stories written between 1969 and 1985.
Each of the 22 stories are a blend of horror and realism, from the full length novella THE MIST to the childhood nightmares of GRAMMA and HERE THERE BE TYGERS.

I have to say that as much as I like Stephen King's more recent efforts, I find his older work much more appealing. THE REAPER'S IMAGE was written when King was just 18 and is by far one of the strongest entries in this collection. It's a macabre tale of a specially crafted mirror, in which people have claimed to see the Grim Reaper before mysteriously disappearing.

THE MONKEY did nothing but reinforce my view that those little cymbal-clanging bastards are just plain creepy.

THE RAFT which was later adapted into part of the Creepshow 2 anthology, is a terrifying story about a group of friends who are trapped and stalked by a mysterious primeval organism.

SURVIVOR TYPE strands a man on a tiny island and asks the question 'How far would you go to survive?'

And in BEACHWORLD, two men crash land on a planet of endless sand. A beach without water, with one man slowly losing his mind.

But it doesn't stop there. Other subjects include a piece of technology which allows you to delete anything you want, a grandma who just wants a hug, even after she is dead and a tale of a killer truck.
The way King describes the events from a parking lot brawl to the creepy eyes of a toy monkey are perfect. And even though he has a tendency to sometimes be corny, or have his character talk too much; the positives far outweigh the negatives. And I have to mention the book's introduction which is very insightful and humorous in explaining his writing process and how he comes up with ideas. And there's a whole truckload of influence evident too, from Lovecraft to Straub.
This book is a whole lot of fun and a great addition to any horror collection. It's also a perfect introduction to Stephen King's short stories.

No comments:

Post a Comment