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Misery - Writing to live!
Misery - Stephen King
Member Name: raebroughton
Misery - Stephen King
Advantages: Great story and great characters
Disadvantages: A bit brutal in parts
To be honest this is the first novel that I have read by Stephen King. I have seen quite a few films that are based on his novels, so I thought I would give one a go in the end I decided on Misery.
When the author Paul Sheldon decided to kill off Misery Chastain in his latest published novel, he had no idea what the terrible consequences of his actions would be. He wants to be rid of Misery and concentrate on what he believes are better stories so after finishing a draft of a new novel called "Fast Cars" Paul decides to head to California.
However on the way there, his car crashes and he wakes up in a strange place and discovers that his rescuer Annie Wilkes pulled him from his wrecked car and brought him to her remote and isolated home. She has put his legs in splints to try and set his mangled legs. He soon discovers that Annie was a nurse and has provided him with pain relieving drugs. Paul is informed straight away by Annie Wilkes that she is his number one fan and when she buys a copy of the last novel in the Misery Chastain series and discovers what he has done to Misery she doesn't like it one bit.
Paul is then put in a horrible situation, he has to write a new novel and bring Misery back to life otherwise he will have to face Annie's wrath.
Misery makes me feel slightly claustrophobic as if you are trapped in that room, unable to move just like Paul Sheldon. Stephen King moves the plot along nicely but still manages to give a good descriptive story all the while drawing the reader further into Paul's nightmare.
Some of the things that happen in the book are pretty brutal and made me cringe but it adds to the story. It definitely makes the reader more fearful of what Annie Wilkes is capable of. I wouldn't class it as an outright horror it is definitely a psychological horror though.
The descriptions of both Paul Sheldon and Annie Wilkes in the book are clear, concise and you quickly build up a mental image of each character. Without a doubt the true star of the book has to be Annie's character. Stephen King manages to bring her so easily to life. How the character is so clearly unbalanced, even when she is being friendly the reader fears she will snap any second and turn on Paul. As soon as she enters the room you tense up just as Paul's character does. You never know what she will do next which makes the book even more engrossing to read.
The book was released in 1987 and a film of the novel was released in 1990 starring Kathy Bates and James Caan.
Summary: A great novel by Stephen King!