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  1. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    A review of 'Misery' by Stephen King.

    Discussion in 'Book Discussion' started by Lemex, Oct 6, 2007.

    A review of 'Misery' by Stephen King.
    By Lemex.

    Stephen King is a writer megastar, with every single novel he has ever written being a best seller and well over 50% being made into successful films. He has been on the cover of film and game posters and no one questioned why, his name is synonymous with Horror and the strange (Even more so than the name 'H.P.Lovecraft', of whom King, and myself, is a great fan). He has been cashing in on the public's fears for over 20 years and continues to write today when he is into is fifties. You would expect then that he gets everything right, and his stores are written so well they deserve all this attention, this sadly is not always the case.

    Being a great King fan myself I was thrilled to read one of his more known stores, having just finished 'The Dark Half' and 'Carrie' I picked 'Misery' up with less than a second thought. Not long after starting the book, i regretted it.

    The Story Is is simple (That's not a bad thing, though sometimes it is, it works in this novel), and reminded me somewhat of the black and white film 'Johnny got his Gun' from the 50s or 60s, how the protagonist, one writer Paul Sheldon described waking up to complete darkness echoed this once great film. Then Paul finds the energy to open his eyes to find his greatest horror, his number one fan, a deranged ex-nurse named Anne Wilkes, who has read and reread all of Paul Sheldon's 'Misery' novels (The title subject) about a Victorian era heroine named Misery Chastain. Things go smoothly between the two people until Anne buys the latest Misery novel to find, to her dismay, that Misery dies at the end of the story. Now, instead of treating Paul Sheldon, she holds him hostage, forcing him to write a new novel in which Misery comes back to life, otherwise she will kill him.

    The story it's self is easy to follow and very interesting, the book is let down however, by my common critique of all of King's novels, his grammar, punctuation and writing style.

    These things should be delt with in the redrafts and checking that all writers should do. His Grammar is terrible, there is no other way to describe it, often placing words in the middle of sentences that need not be there, commas where he should have put a full stop, full stops where he should have put a comma or a semi-colon. The other main point is his writing style, that works for him when telling a story, but King has simply not mastered the style and volcabuliery of writing reports and News articles, a theme though out much of his work from 'Carrie' to the Goerge A. Romeo style novel 'Cell.' The news letters in this novel are written too amiterishly and dully written to be believable and he clearly lacks the sensationalist style that the Media has perfected to make a story seam more interesting than it really is. Also, King got into the simply irritating habit of going back to the same irrelevant point over and over. near the beginning of the novel Paul Sheldon compares the pain in his broken legs, and the pain killing drugs to a pile of sand and the tide washing it away at a beach, this is pretty imaginative, but he goes back to this many times in the novel and it is often simply annoying. However, Kings scope and technical knowledge is highly impressive. The novel also deals with drugs and lock picking, and the way he discribes these minor details is very impressive.

    All in all, Misery is an enertaining story, but it's let down by some massive flaws. I would recommend if you wish to read this book, do your self a favour and watch the film.

    Not recommended.

    Lemex
     
  2. Funny Bunny
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    Funny Bunny Contributing Member

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    Grammar and punctuation rules are often bent for writers of fiction. Very few Writers (American) use semi colons. Many try to keep commas to a minimum. Also things like sentance fragments are and will always be acceptable.

    Which Media? I believe the story occurs in Maine or New Hampshire or one of those Eastern Coast US states. The fact is that American News writing is horribly dull and not at all like English. It is "just the facts" written at an 8th grade level. Very rarely do you get more than dry information in a news story-- so while the English news-writers have perfected a juicy tabloid style, I am sure he is emulating the dry ugly style of American News Writing.

    Personally, I think a lot of SK's "one person alone in a cabin" type writing is way silly. I think the best books he wrote were "Firestarter," and "The Dead Zone."
     
  3. Endeavour
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    Endeavour Senior Member

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    Misery was written between 1985 and 1986. This was the time when Mr King was officially an alcoholic and a cocaine user. It is actually confessed in his On Writting book. In light of this fact, it is no surprise that his writing style in this particular book disappoints many fans.
     
  4. EyezForYou
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    EyezForYou Active Member

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    He's alcoholic and cocaine binge is what made his books fun to read.

    Now, not so much.

    His newer works are steadily dropping a notch below his earlier.
     

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