Monday, February 20, 2012

Review: Thinner - by Stephen King

Published: January 1, 1984
Publisher: Signet
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased at GoodWill

Billy Halleck, good husband, loving father, is both beneficiary and victim of the American Good Life: he has an expensive home, a nice family, and a rewarding career as a lawyer...but he is also fifty pounds overweight and as his doctor keeps reminding him edging into heart attack country.
Then, in a moment of carelessness, Billy sideswipes an old gypsy woman as she is crossing the street -- and her ancient father passes a bizarre and terrible judgement on him.
"Thinner," the old gypsy man whispers, and caresses his cheek, like a lover.  Just one word...but six weeks later and ninety-three pounds lighter, Billy Halleck is more than worried.  He's terrified.  And desperate enoguh for one last gamble...that will lead him to a nightmare showdown with the forces of evil melting his flesh away.  And away.  And away...

First Sentences
"Thinner," the old Gypsy man with the rotting nose whispers to William Halleck as Halleck and his wife, Heidi, come out of the courthouse.  Just that one word, sent on the wafting, cloying sweetness of his breath.  "Thinner."  And before Halleck can jerk away, the old Gypsy reaches out and caresses his cheek with one twisted finger.  His lips spread open like a wound, showing a few tombstone stumps poking out of his gums.  They are black and green.  His tongue squirms between them and then slides out to slick his grinning, bitter lips.  Thinner.

 My Thoughts
I honestly didn't know what to expect with this book.  I've avoided Stephen King books for the simple fact that I truly don't want nightmares.  Well, this book will have me trying out more in the future, that's for sure.  
I cannot remember the last time that while reading a book I was so scared/creeped out/disgusted/etc that my knuckles actually turned white while holding the book.  I just wished that the story had moved along a little quicker.  While there was a lot of detail, and that did help scare me more...I also thought it could have been a lot quicker.
You meet Billy Halleck after the Gypsy has already placed this curse on him.  I personally didn't find a deep connection to Billy -- it was like I was reading about him, but more fascinated by the other characters - especially the Gypsies.  
He is quickly dropping the pounds -- which is a good thing as he is extremely overweight...However it is falling off so quickly and no matter what he does it keeps coming off.  His wife, Heidi, is terrified because she is sure that it is cancer, and doesn't believe in this "curse" that Billy keeps talking about. 
After a trip to find the Gypsy that has cursed Billy, I think he ends up with much more than he originally bargained for.

Just as a side note -- it was extremely soon as I finished this book (the exact same night) the movie Thinner was on TV.  Of course, I am never really a huge fan of the movies after I've already read the book...but this was TERRIBLE.  It was so extremely cheesy and just plain awful.  James was in the room with me watching it and kept asking me how I could read something so incredibly dumb.  I had to repeatedly tell him that the book was NOTHING like the movie, and that the movie was so terrible had I seen that first I never would have read the book.

My Ratings
Cover: 2/5 - The cover of my version is extremely boring and doesn't really fit the book
Characters: 4/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Plot: 4/5
Ending: 5/5
Overall: 4.5

Happy Reading! 

No comments:


Related Posts with Thumbnails