Published by Hard Case Crime on March 2, 2021
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Also by this author: Skeleton Crew, The Outsider, The Stand, Christine, The Institute, Carrie, Needful Things
#1 bestselling author Stephen King returns with a brand-new novel about the secrets we keep buried and the cost of unearthing them.
The son of a struggling single mother, Jamie Conklin just wants an ordinary childhood. But Jamie is no ordinary child. Born with an unnatural ability his mom urges him to keep secret, Jamie can see what no one else can see and learn what no one else can learn. But the cost of using this ability is higher than Jamie can imagine - as he discovers when an NYPD detective draws him into the pursuit of a killer who has threatened to strike from beyond the grave.
Later is Stephen King at his finest, a terrifying and touching story of innocence lost and the trials that test our sense of right and wrong. With echoes of King's classic novel IT, Later is a powerful, haunting, unforgettable exploration of what it takes to stand up to evil in all the faces it wears.
It’s time for another buddy read post! This time we tackled Stephen King’s newest book called Later and well lets just say she enjoyed it more than me…lol. Oh well can’t win them all! 🙂 After you check out what I thought go over to Booker T’s Farm and see what she thought.
Here is what I thought
I think I had to high of expectations of this book and maybe that hindered my joy of it but I really just didn’t care for this one.
It’s told from the POV of a young man who is telling his story of his youth and the fact that he sees dead people and how it effected him growing up. Jamie has always been able to see dead people and it’s something his mother doesn’t like to talk about and makes him promise not to acknowledge it. She wants to pretend it doesn’t happen though she knows he knows things he shouldn’t unless he was talking to the dead. Like the time he told her where their neighbors wife’s wedding rings were when he couldn’t find them after she passed away.
His mother is a literary agent who is not having a great go of things because of a bad financial move first started by her brother who now has dementia or something like that I can’t remember. Anyway, she continues using putting money in an investment that ends up being a Ponzi scheme and they lose a lot of money. So when her biggest cash cow author dies before writing his last novel it seems that all of a sudden it’s okay for Jamie to see dead people because she needs information from the guy.
The only way to get that info is for his mothers girlfriend who is a not so great cop and while doing this Liz the cop finds out about his ability which ends up getting him used by the woman when she needs him to help her talk to a bad guy who is dead. The only thing is this time instead of the dead person just leaving this guy decides to stick around a bit scaring the poor kid for a long time. Then some more life stuff happens and he is a bit older and then he gets used again and so forth.
So I thought since this was a hard case crime story I was going to get a really cool mystery/crime that would involve a bit of the supernatural, but this was really just a coming of age story with a bit of supernatural in it and the only real crime was how horrible and corrupt the cop Liz was and the things she did and what she did towards the end that I can’t say anything about. I just didn’t consider this a crime novel. I just found it to be a boring recollection of the narrator’s childhood because of his special ability. Then you add in the ending and ugh. I don’t even know why the author thought he needed to throw that bit of info in at the end, I could have totally done without it as it didn’t add to the story.
I can’t even really say I was a fan of any of the characters, I mean Jamie was okay and I felt bad for him and how he was being used for his ability and the fact that seeing dead people can be pretty scary for a kid. The other characters though I could care less about, his mother is horrible and don’t get me started on Liz! I did like the old man, whose name I can’t remember, but he was nice to Jamie.
I might be a bit hard on this book because it just happens to be the third of fourth book I have read lately that has been a new release that has decided to use a corrupt/bad cop (not dead set against it, but it’s very overdone lately) in it’s plot and I am sick and tired of it. I get enough of that crap in the news I don’t need to read about it.
I loved The Outsider which was a crime novel with supernatural elements so I guess I was thinking this would be something more like that and because it was just a coming of age type story it bored me. I just really didn’t find that much in it to be interesting but I will say that it read quickly because of the short chapters which I was surprised about because it seems King doesn’t normally have short chapters in his books!
So while this wasn’t a book I enjoyed, I know plenty of others who have so I can’t recommend it, but you can try it if you want. 🙂