Full Dark, No Stars
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Top Customer Reviews
A thought provoking book that delves into the darker side of life. If you have never read a Stephen King book before, I would perhaps suggest you do not start with this, as it is one of the darkest books of his I have read, but die hard King fans should really enjoy it.
One more point, I do not understand why people put spoilers on here?! I am glad I did not read these reviews before I read the book.
These four novellas revolve around death, murder, guilt, revenge and redemption and only the third story (the weakest in my opinion) hints at anything supernatural. The strength of the other stories comes from the characters and the way their minds wrestle with their actions or events that unfold. He's always been very good at winning the reader over with a warm and inviting voice (think of 'Red' from 'Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption') that can charm you whilst simultaneously pulling you further and further into a dark and twisted world. It has to be said, at times this book is incredibly grisly and graphic, with vivd images of decaying corpses and monstrous crimes dancing around your head long after you've stopped reading. I think King may've been inspired by some of Cormac McCarthy's work when writing the first tale, "1922". It's by no means in the same league but there's an undeniable feel of darkness that's reminiscent of 'Child of God'.
As I mentioned, the third of the four is the weakest and it jarred against the sustained tension and pace of the others. It's a shame as overall it's some of the best work he's ever done. If you like horror but have grown weary of werewolves and vampires, then this will keep you entertained and reinstill some faith in one of the best mainstream writers of our time.
The title is very well chosen - there is hardly any light shining in this "voyage into the heart of darkness", therefore you should be ready for the very tough stuff, even harder and darker than the rest of King's works. Here, evil is everywhere and it leaves a mark even on the good people - and sometimes swallows them whole.
The first story, "1922", is the longest, the darkest, the hardest - and the best! Without providing too much spoilers let's just say that it describes a troubled family of farmers from Nebraska who, in 1922, find themselves in financial and personal troubles - and something must be done about it... It is a "crime and punishment" story, described in a very King'ish style, with just a very slight (but masterly applied) touch of Lovecraftian atmosphere in the second part. I was deeply shocked but also very very impressed by this story and I count it amongst the best things Stephen King's ever wrote!
The second story, "Big Driver", is not as excellent as the first one, but it is still a very honest read. This one is also a "crime and punishment" story, but here the word "punishment" should be in fact understood as "revenge" or "vigilante justice". The main hero here is a woman who was victim of a terrible crime and who, at the peril of her life, wants retribution... A very dramatic story, well written, with a great lot of unexpected twists.
The third story, "Fair extension", is a retelling of a Faustian deal with the Devil.Read more ›
All in all, an impressive collection. Don't be afraid of the dark. Delve in.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Dark, compelling, nearly normal misery caused by unfortunate circumstances, tipped over the edge by the unexpected, and then there is... The horror.Published 5 days ago by Finn Werner
While I consider that Stepehen King is possibly one of the greatest story-tellers alive, I don't like his horror stuff. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Val
Stephen King’s latest collection, Full Dark, No Stars, contains four novellas about ordinary people who turn into killers. Read morePublished 2 months ago by jodie cook
As usual Stephen King holds you rivited. A master of his craftPublished 2 months ago by Vivien Tott
This is my personal favourite collection of King's. 'A Good Marriage' is, in my opinion, the best in the book, closely followed by 'Big Driver'.Published 3 months ago by Kayleigh Marie Edwards