Black House

Black HouseBlack House by Stephen King
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This twenty-years-later sequel to THE TALISMAN is a more mature story than its predecessor, and thus, to me at least, a more interesting one. However, I found the floating, omniscient narrative style in which the authors chose to tell the story very distancing and off-putting. The pacing is off as well. As with THE TALISMAN, things pick up considerably in the second half, but until then the novel spins its wheels so often that, at times, it felt more of a chore to read than a joy. While it’s fun to spot the references to THE TALISMAN, there’s really no reason for this to be a sequel. It could just as easily have been a stand-alone, tangential Dark Tower tale like INSOMNIA or “Low Men in Yellow Coats” without missing anything. It’s nice to see Jack and Speedy again, of course, but the storyline has so little to do with THE TALISMAN–and so much to do with the Dark Tower–that it left me wondering why they were brought back at all. Also, leaving Richard Sloat out of the proceedings is unforgivable. In my opinion, BLACK HOUSE is a misfire from two powerhouse talents.

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