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Later af Stephen King

Later (udgave 2021)

af Stephen King (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
6153028,866 (3.89)26
Forfattere:Stephen King (Forfatter)
Info:Hard Case Crime (2021), 272 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek

Detaljer om værket

Later af Stephen King

Nyligt tilføjet afTeresaBee, TomDonaghey, astansell, privat bibliotek, thebookwrangler, vissy, debbiedd24, cassienba, Iira, t-rocc

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Engelsk (28)  Tysk (1)  Alle sprog (29)
Viser 1-5 af 29 (næste | vis alle)
Later (2021) by Stephen King. This is a good book, but not a great one. The hero, who starts as a boy and later writes this story as a young man, SEES DEAD PEOPLE! King does doff his hat to the movie that had the same basic theme, but he has taken it in a different direction. Here the youth, Jamie Conklin, only sees them for a few days after they die. At that point the dead sort of fade into nothingness.
But while they are around, he can talk to them and, more specifically, ask them questions. This is an important detail in the plot. When asked, the dead, who appear not to care too much about earthly things, will tell him the truth.
Jamie’s mother is a single woman and Jamie does not know who his father is. Mom runs a small company as a literary agent. Small as in it is just her. But she is devoted to her son but is not too friendly with his special ability. Mom’s “friend” Liz is a NYPD detective and the couple have a wonderful relationship that, over the course of the book, falls apart.
Part of the problem are the drugs that Liz transports. The other is Liz’s decision that Jamie can actually see and talk with the dead. That might come in handy as she works homicide.
Then the serial bomber “Thumper” suicided, but he left a note promising one last major bombing, so Liz turns to Jamie.
But the dead “Thumper” is something Jaimie has not encountered before. Not only is the ghost unwilling to answer questions, he won’t go away.
A good premise but there are a few tropes here that have been gnawed on by King many times over. King is better when working with several school-aged heroes. And in this outing he leaves no doubt that Jamie will survive whatever is thrown his way. I found this to dissipate the growing tension and struck down the scare factor.
But in all, it is a King novel, which means it is a better read than most other books you’ll find on the shelves. ( )
  TomDonaghey | Jul 23, 2021 |
A quick read by Stephen King. Very typical King - teenager main character with supernatural powers. The book was written first person, and stated it was not the same as the sixth sense movie. Err, no - it was quite a bit like it. I was not crazy about the ending.
7/4/2021; 571 members; 3.91 average rating ( )
  mainrun | Jul 4, 2021 |
Jamie Conklin is not your ordinary kid - he has a special talent to see and communicate with newly dead people. But one dead individual is a bit more than dead... classic Stephen King, with just the right amount of horror and angst. ( )
  phoenixcomet | Jun 21, 2021 |
My years-long negative streak with Stephen King’s books seems to be definitely over: the last few books of his I read all turned out to be as engaging as the stories I used to enjoy, and Later is only the last example in my lineup of positive reads.

Even though it’s a shorter story when compared with King’s usual production, Later sports all the elements that I’ve come to expect from the Master of Horror: this novel might not be classified as his usual horror creation, since there are not many blood-chilling elements in it, and there is also a mystery/crime component added that changes a little the expected parameters, but in the end this proved to be an entertaining, page-turning read, and one I enjoyed very much.

Jamie Conklin sees dead people: not exactly ghosts as was the case for the young protagonist of Shyamalan’s movie alluded to here with a sort of tongue-in-cheek humor, but rather people newly departed and on their way to the Great Beyond. Jamie is able to see and hear them (although after a while their voice fades, as do they before disappearing forever) and to ask them questions to which the dead are compelled to reply truthfully. Jamie’s single mother runs a literary agency and she’s able to stay afloat - barely - thanks to the best selling author of a successful series: when the man suddenly dies just as he was outlining his last novel, the one where all the mysteries hinted at in previous books would be revealed, Tia Conklin needs Jamie to contact the deceased author to get all the information he can gather on the story, so she can ghost-write it and keep the company in business and financial health.

The trouble starts when Liz Dutton, Tia’s former girlfriend and a cop with too many problems and not enough scruples, decides to use Jamie’s talent to discover where a serial bomber, who just took his own life, did hide his latest explosive package: something ancient and evil rides on the shoulders of the man and starts haunting Jamie, forcing him to resort to a harrowing ritual to get rid of the creature. That is, until the boy needs the thing’s help against Liz when the dishonorably discharged ex-cop kidnaps Jamie for one last, heinous act…

Very few authors can successfully filter the problems and inconsistencies of the world through the eyes of a child as Stephen King does: unlike other protagonists of his stories, Jamie is not shunned, bullied or otherwise made to suffer by peers or adults, but he does witness his mother’s struggles to survive in an unsettled economy and through a difficult relationship, all the while dealing with a “gift” that sets him apart from other kids, forcing him to keep secrets, and ultimately places him in danger. Jamie’s voice, as he grows up over the years from childhood to young adulthood, feels true and natural and for this reason it’s easy to connect to him and see the world through his eyes: innate resilience helps him navigate through the difficulties posed by his peculiar talent, particularly in the instances where his innocence is threatened. This is another theme dear to King, the way in which the adult world (or the supernatural) can rob children of that innocence, exposing them too early to situations that require them to grow before their time: in Jamie’s case this is compounded by Liz’s relentless focus first and greed later, so that he’s forced to come into contact with the darker aspects of the human mind, which more often than not are far more frightening than actual supernatural horror.

Young Jamie is able to find some balance in this very unusual existence thanks to the certainty of his mother’s love - even though he’s quite aware of her flaws both as a parent and an adult - and the guidance of old Professor Burkett, the closest thing to a father figure he can depend on: the relationship between Burkett and Jamie, both in life and after the old man’s death, reminded me somehow of the dynamic explored in Mr. Harrigan’s Phone, one of the short stories from King’s If It Bleeds collection. The somewhat cranky professor, like many of Stephen King’s memorable figures, is the one providing Jamie with a stable anchor and a perspective that helps the boy focus on the problems at hand rather than his fear, and offers a delightful dynamic between wide-eyed youth and grumpy old age that is one of the author’s trademarks.

There might be nothing new, narratively speaking, in this novel, but it does not matter much in the face of the story’s easy flow, which is carried by the constant curiosity engendered by Jamie hinting at other developments to be disclosed, indeed, later: the young protagonist keeps his audience captivated like serialized novels did in the latter part of the 19th Century, by promising further revelations yet to come. This choice led me to wonder weather Jamie might be considered an unreliable narrator - either embellishing or changing events to suit them to the overall flavor of his story: that’s a doubt that surfaced for me once a detail of Jamie’s origin is revealed, because he himself first offers an explanation for the chain of events, only to deny its accuracy in the next page.

This detail (I will not spoil it, but if you’ve read the book you know what I am referring to) does not affect the story in any way - and I’ve kept wondering what it should mean in the overall scheme of it - but rather offers an off-key note to the ending which, in my opinion, would have stood quite well on its own without this added… baggage. Still, Later feels like vintage King, indeed, and I would recommend it to his longtime fans - and not only them. ( )
  SpaceandSorcery | Jun 18, 2021 |
Pandemic read. The two books before this had been less than stellar for me-- either I couldn't find the thread of the story, or I found the writing boring, breathing no life into the characters or narrative. I feared it was my fault. But then I picked this up, interestingly enough not my usual genre, and wowzer. snagged me like a wide mouthed bass and reeled me in. The cover is especially great, the story, fantastic. ( )
  bookczuk | Jun 8, 2021 |
Viser 1-5 af 29 (næste | vis alle)
These are the type of stories I love to read. I hope I can see your work in NovelStar. There are also a lot of talented writers in that platform. You may check their group on Facebook.
tilføjet af MarshaMellow | RedigerLibraryThing.com, Marsha Mellow

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First edition includes preview of Joyland by Stephen King.
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