Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King Review

Title: Doctor Sleep
Author: Stephen King
Pages: 531 pgaes
Publisher: Scribner September 24th, 2013
Source: Owned
Links:  Stephen King Author webpage, Goodreads,

On highways across America, a tribe of people called The True Knot travel in search of sustenance. They look harmless—mostly old, lots of polyester, and married to their RVs. But as Dan Torrance knows, and spunky twelve-year-old Abra Stone learns, The True Knot are quasi-immortal, living off the “steam” that children with the “shining” produce when they are slowly tortured to death. Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel where he spent one horrific childhood year, Dan has been drifting for decades, desperate to shed his father’s legacy of despair, alcoholism, and violence. Finally, he settles in a New Hampshire town, an AA community that sustains him, and a job at a nursing home where his remnant “shining” power provides the crucial final comfort to the dying. Aided by a prescient cat, he becomes “Doctor Sleep.” Then Dan meets the evanescent Abra Stone, and it is her spectacular gift, the brightest shining ever seen, that reignites Dan’s own demons and summons him to a battle for Abra’s soul and survival. This is an epic war between good and evil, a gory, glorious story that will thrill the millions of devoted readers of The Shining and satisfy anyone new to the territory of this icon in the King canon.
I am so glad to have finally read this book! I have had it forever... I received it at a Stephen King book signing and still hadn't got around to it.  I actually really enjoyed it.  The Shinning was my first King book and I loved it so much. So I was very cautious about reading this book. I didn't want it to ruin the magic of the Shining for me. Honestly though I thought it did a good job of being it's own book but having nods to the Shining in it.  I thought the True Knot was a cool idea (a group of vampire like people who travel around together to steal the Shining from those that have it).. though I was expecting them to be more of a carnival type of group.  The idea of these vampires is that they have one tooth and some how suck up "steam" which is the Shining in kids. 

This book certainly wasn't scary to me. I didn't get the same fear I had when reading the Shining. It's funny that I loved this book and then started reading all the negative reviews on goodreads then it starts making me second guess myself! As for as the characters I really liked Abra's character.  We get to read about her from birth... she also has the Shining and eventually her life mixes with Dan (from the first book).  I enjoyed reading about Dan's problems with drinking.. thinking that King was actually talking about himself. So we read a lot about being an alcoholic in this book. Rose the Hat was a fantastic villain. After reading about her I loved the book cover even more (she is on the cover).  She would be the head of the True Knot. 

I think we all have to remember that The Shining and Doctor Sleep were written 30 years apart. That is barely older then I am and I have changed SO much in those years so I am not surprised that King's writing style has changed. One thing I think the book was missing was more detail about the True Knot.  We only read one back story to a character in the True Knot and that is it.  I think had we had more information on the group's characters they might have been a little more scary.  I just remember reading a bunch of names for the group and not even knowing really who they even were except maybe 2 or 3 of them.  A hard thing for me on this book is how to rate it? Comparing it to the Shining?? Or as a stand alone book?? So hard!

I would recommend this book to other King lovers.  You should for sure read The Shining before reading this... though I do think enough information is given about the previous book so you could read this one alone.

The Shining Review 

The crystal ball says:

Clouds are covering! A read that lets me down every now and then but peaks out of the clouds!


  1. I haven't read The Shining. I wonder if I read this one first if I'd like it better because I wasn't comparing it to The Shining and having all these preconceived opinions.

  2. Lisa @ Captivated ReaderJuly 22, 2015 at 5:35 PM

    Thanks for sharing your review of both The Shining and Doctor Sleep. I haven't read either book, but now would lie to read both novels at some point. It sounds me like they are stand alone novels even though Dan is in both novels... I guess I feel this way due to what you mentioned in your post that both novels were written so many decades apart and King's writing style has obviously changed over time.

    I trust your instinct that more information/history about True Knot should have been provided... With a 500+ page novel, you'd think more about True Knot would have been provided for sure.

    Happy reading!! I look forward to reading your next review. :-)

  3. Kimi @ Geeky ChiquitasJuly 22, 2015 at 7:42 PM

    I haven't read any Stephen King books before.I don't really know if scary books are my thing... but might be worth a shot! Great review!

    -Kimi at Geeky Chiquitas

  4. I'm so glad you got around to reading this finally. I have been curious as to what you thought. I loved this book but because of the story. It wasn't scary which was a bummer but I loved the plot and the characters.

    Loved your review.