Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop All Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now DIYED Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Oasis Listen in Prime Shop now Shop now
Customer Review

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An overlooked gem and a crackling story, 22 Sept. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Firestarter (Paperback)
Andy McGee, a young student, willingly takes part in a medical experiment to raise a little cash. The experiment, sponsored by a shady government organisation called "The Shop" leaves him (and his future wife) with telepathic/telekinetic powers. Many years later and Andy is on the run from The Shop with his daughter, who has inherited her parents' powers (and then some), in tow. Their pursuers (inevitably) want to conduct a few "experiments" on Andy and Charlie...

It's been mentioned in another review that Firestarter is one of King's most emotionally compelling books and I have to agree. I rarely experience particularly strong emotional reactions to even very good books: I don't think I've ever read a story that scared me, or made me happy, or want to cry. However, Firestarter is one (possibly the only one? No - there was Gallipoli) that /really/ moved me and I can vividly remember first reading it (many years ago) and being sucked in by the story and engaging with it as if it were reality (and for a book about telekinesis, that's quite an achievement!). In fact, I would go so far as to say that I found Andy and Charlie's plight heartbreaking. Don't worry, there's no gratuitously gory medical experimentation or anything like that. What moved me was Andy's devotion to his young daughter, Charlie's innocence and the dispassionate, detatched cruelty of their tormentors. I'll say it again, because it still surprises me - this is a moving, upsetting, sad and engaging story. It's not (for me anyway) a tearjerker but it really did tug on my heartstrings.

OK so it's all a bit cliched; innocent fugitives on the lam from a sinister government organisation, covert weapons research, yadda yadda yadda. But, like so many of King's novels, it still works. Whatever his critics may say about his material, he has a real gift for producing characters that you really /care/ about. The relationship between Charlie and her father is one example, but even King's baddies are done well enough that you care enough about them to hate them. Thus The Shop's supervisor, Captain Hollister (surely a model for Kurtz in Dreamcatcher) and his go-to-man, Rainbird, are strong, vivid, interesting (if just a little hackneyed) characters.

King never disappoints. Perhaps, over the years, and with so many books under his belt, his stuff may occasionally seem a little "samey" in various ways; the same old characters, the same old dialogue, the same old monsters and baddies. However, I think Firestarter has stood up very well indeed to the passage of time (thirty years!) and the relentless tide of his subsequent works (around sixty novels and short story collections!) and it is as good a book today as it seemed then.

Highly recommended... No. VERY highly recommended
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

Be the first person to comment on this review.

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
  [Cancel]


Review Details

Item

Reviewer

Crookedmouth
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   

Location: As seen on iPlayer

Top Reviewer Ranking: 53