The house looked right, felt right to Dr Louis Creed. Rambling, old, unsmart and comfortable. A place where the family could settle, the children grow and play and explore. The rolling hills and meadows of Maine seemed a world away from the fume-choked dangers of Chicago.
Only the occasional big truck out on the two-lane highway, grinding up through the gears, hammering down the long gradients, growled out an intrusive threat. But behind the house and far away from the road: that was safe. Just a carefully cleared path up into the woods where generations of local children have processed with the solemn innocence of the young, taking with them their dear departed pets for burial.
A sad place maybe, but safe. Surely a safe place. Not a place to seep into your dreams, to wake you, sweating with fear and foreboding.
Author: Stephen King
Narrator: Michael C. Hall
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Audio Release Date: 27/03/2018
Running Time: 15hrs 41mins
My Rating of ‘Pet Semetary’: 4 out of 5
Pet Semetary is THAT Stephen King book that every Stephen King fan has either read or keeps telling themselves ‘I’ll get to that one. I have to get to that one’. I finally got around to it and had that feeling of ‘I hope I haven’t built this up to be more than King can deliver’ purely because, the guy has a tough enough time selling me most of his endings.
This one, however, was incredibly satisfying from start to finish. As a book it was enjoyable, and as subject matter it had that uneasy vibe running through it the whole time. In the author intro, King himself said, of all the things he’s written he views this as the most frightening. More so for the personal experience he had that gave rise to the idea and, having heard of the experience, you can totally tell why he thinks that.
The character work, as ever, was pretty damn flawless by King. As was the story building. My main negative is that it’s close to sixteen hours long and most of those sixteen hours is slow-burn story building. When stuff happens it take a long time to get to it and then a really long time to get to anything else happening after that.
Another thing that, at first, I hated but soon grew to not care about was his habit of: ‘And little did <insert character name here> know, they had only three weeks to live.’ I hate spoilers. Hate them with a passion. So an author telling me that certain characters were going to die, didn’t sit well with me. Thankfully, his writing skills smoothed it over and I suppose being that told ahead of time actually softened the blow for when it really happened. It started as a negative, but ended as something I kind of enjoyed.
On the whole, as far as negatives go, neither were huge for me. His story building was just the sort of easy reading you can sink into and his mini-spoilers kind of worked really well. I do, however, feel that he could have cut parts out to make it shorter and not really lost anything from the overall story.
Still, on the whole, I really enjoyed it. The ending was also pretty good, something that I can’t always say with a King book.
I loved the narration for this one, especially the way the narrator voices Judd. He gets the New England drawl down to a tee. I could have listened to Judd and his stories for hours. Well, I suppose I did. But I could have listened to that character for far longer and not got bored.