Review – Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King

mr. mercedes

Hi, my name is Mary and I am a Stephen King addict.  I’ve heard that the first step to deal with addiction is admitting you have a problem.  I understand that I will probably never get over this need to pre-order any new books and re-read all of my old favorites.  That’s okay.  What I really want to learn to accept is that not all of them will be 5-star favorites.

So, Mr. Mercedes…the story begins with a psycho/socio-path driving a stolen Mercedes into a crowd waiting in line at a job fair.  Men, women and children are killed and maimed.  The police investigate but somehow the perpetrator isn’t discovered.  One of the detectives, Bill Hodges, retires and his life starts to go downhill until he receives a letter from the ‘perk’ who wants to play mind games with him.

Mr. Mercedes has all of the elements of classic Stephen King.  Crazy people, creepy accessories (ice cream truck, anyone?), old cars, tough older men, young heroes.  And, for the most part, it works.  It’s an enjoyable read with an engaging story.

After finishing, I rated this 4 stars and wish that work hadn’t kept me from writing my review right then.  Because as I look back, I’m tempted to lower it to 3.  Usually I find little fault with King’s writing.  It doesn’t work for everyone but it clicks for me.  This time, I found some of the phrasing cliché and overused in current novels.  (Letting out a breath that you didn’t know you were holding was the most obvious example.)  King is better than that.

And, as much as I hate to say it, I felt that this novel was a set up for a series.  King wrote one of my favorite (it may actually be at the top) series, The Dark Tower.  The difference is that the story seemed organic and as you read you knew that the wind was blowing the story at King instead of him deciding to write a series.  Does that make any sense?  It’s a feeling that readers get.  And, again, I hold King to a higher standard and just feel that he’s better than that.

Recommended to King fans but I don’t think this one is destined to become a classic.

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