Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Something Sinister Lurks…

In the Tall Grass...

In The Tall Grass is a Stephen King Joe Hill novella collaboration previously released as a two–parter within Esquire and recently released in e-book and audiobook format.  The story begins when a brother and sister pull off to the side of the road after hearing a young boy call for help from beyond the tall grass which forms the title to the story.  Within minutes they have somehow become separated, disoriented and unaccountably lost.  Gradually, they realise something is toying with them, blurring the lines of reality, so that they end up travelling in circles; close to one another and yet never able to reach one another, even when apparently within close proximity and able to converse. 

The premise of the situation is simple and touches upon themes previously addressed within King’s works (Firestarter and Children of the Corn come to mind in respect of the “tall grass”) and it works.  We, the reader, are taken into dark territory, here.  The narrative is disconcerting and, in places, physically and conceptually disturbing, without getting spoiler specific – so, not for the faint at heart.  Ultimately, both characters and situation turn full circle, adding to the sense of a complete narrative arc and claustrophobia of the scenario, from which, it seems, there is no escape.  This leaves a lingering sense of the inevitable on which to ponder as the story closes, as well as a possible need to clean up from the gore.  Chilling and bloody.


As an added bonus, the e-book format includes excerpts from the forthcoming Dr Sleep from King, sequel to The Shining and the beginning of Hill’s forthcoming NOS4R2.  Incidentally, NOS4R2 is already on my TBR’s mental listing…  

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