Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Staff Picks

October “dares” me to read a chillingly disturbing ghost story. If you, too, enjoy scaring yourself senseless, one of the best authors to fulfill that need is Stephen King. King has written many great horror novels, but The Shining is regarded as one of the scariest horror stories ever told. I recently reread the novel after 35 years, and it’s every bit as terrifying now as it was then. In addition if you have watched the movie adaptation, you should definitely read the novel, as it differs in some very significant ways.

The Shining is the story of Jack Torrance, his wife, Wendy, and their six year-old son, Danny. Jack takes a job as a caretaker of the stately old Overlook Hotel in the Colorado Rockies during the off-season, after his drinking problems and violent temper have left him desperate for a job. Harsh winter conditions and total isolation slowly wreak havoc on his mind and his descent into madness is both powerful and terrifying. Young Danny has “the shine” – psychic abilities to see and know things he should not. The Overlook, a living entity all its own, reveals a creepy and sinister past. Ultimately a story of survival, The Shining will keep you on the edge of your seat, and hiding under your covers, until the last page.

The sequel, Doctor Sleep, picks up with a middle-aged Danny who works in a nursing home using his “shining” abilities to comfort dying patients. As of this writing, Doctor Sleep is #1 on the New York Times Bestseller List for Fiction. It appears King has worked his magic yet again. I hope you enjoy both The Shining and Doctor Sleep, and sweet dreams!

Beth Moore
Information Specialist