A few bites of darkness – “Everything is Eventual: 14 Dark Tales” by Stephen King
I am aware of this fact. I read “The Green Mile.” I know he writes other stuff.
However, if the back cover of a book promises “spine-chilling” and “unrelenting horror,” I’m obviously going to be a disappointment when there aren’t guts and monsters on each and every page.
Though a lively and intriguing collection of short stories from the brilliant Mr. King, “Everything’s Eventual” just wasn’t as scary as it’s cover made it out to be. Hello – The book is subtitled “14 Dark Tales.”
So yeah, I expected some more shaking in my boots.
Sure, there’s some darkness running through all of them, but only a few could probably honestly be truly classified as dark tales.
All that aside, I really did enjoy each of the pieces in this book.
Since this is a month about horror, though, let me discuss the two pieces that I feel really had their chilling moments.
The first piece is the first story in the book – “Autopsy in Room 4” – which takes off like a shot and hurls the reader down a hospital corridor inside the mind of a man who is presumed dead and on his way to autopsy. Except that he’s not actually dead. And he’s awake and watching, unable to move, as the doctors prepare to perform an autopsy on him. It’s incredibly “Twilight Zone,” and I adored it.
The other scary story here is “1408,” which is King’s take on a pretty classic motif in horror – the haunted hotel room. This time, it’s a plucky writer who decides to stay in the room, and things turn twisted in no time. I read it as a short homage to “The Shining,” personally – but that’s just me.
There are lots of interesting pieces here. (The title story is incredibly clever, and could easily be turned into a successful TV shot or movie, I’m sure.)
For King fans, this collection is probably an must-read.
For those looking for chills, not so much. I’d recommend one of Kings other short story collections over this one. Maybe try “Night Shift.”