Book Review: Duma Key by Stephen King
September 27, 2011 26 Comments
If you’d ask me, I’d say Stephen King is way too scary for me. Misery? I shiver. Carrie? I shudder. But those are the movies. The books tend to be bearable or even very much enjoyable (like The Stand).
For a while when reading this book I was worried I’d get very spooked. But that never happened. I’m not sure whether that’s a good thing in this case.
Duma Key: What it is about
Edgar Freemantle was in an accident that left him with only one arm and a hip that he needed to learn to walk with again. His wife couldn’t handle living with Edgar as a disabled man and divorced him.
With money no object (his previous job paid well, and he also had an inheritance), Edgar rents a house on the beach of the island of Duma Key. Here, he works on an almost-forgotten hobby of his: drawing and painting.
His only neighbours are an old lady and her caretaker. The lady, suffering from Alzheimer, sometimes warns Edgar against the island and repeats sentences that don’t make sense to him.
He finds that his painting is going well. Very well indeed. It’s almost like he is not doing it himself. And all his pictures have something to do with the sea and a ship.
After a while, Edgar discovers there is some pattern in his paintings and this is related to the old lady and her past.
Don’t be surprised if a sea ghost or two enter the stage.
Duma Key: What I thought
The setting up of the story was well done. I was happy to follow Edgar around, limping through his house and on the beach. He made some great paintings and people congratulated him with his progress. Great. Some unknown force helping him produce the pictures… I could handle it.
But a convoluted story about sea ghosts and an old ship? No, I didn’t enjoy that. I could not tell you the plot because I didn’t understand it. I didn’t understand it because I didn’t try hard enough. It was too odd and uninteresting.
So, what started off great ended in a disappointment. Next!
Rating: 3/5 stars
I got this book: from my mother, who loved it
I read this in: Dutch (Duma), the original language is English
Number of pages: 624
First published: 2008
Extra: Also check out my review of The Running Man by Stephen King.