Dr. Sleep (The Shining Book 2) by Stephen King

King finally gives his constant readers what they’ve been wishing for in this novel which continues the story of Danny Torrance, the main character of one of his most popular novels ever, “The Shining”.  This stunning and suspenseful novel focuses on the now middle-aged Danny Torrance and the very special little girl he is destined to save from a band of mysterious (and murderous) paranormals.

Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel, the place where he spent one horrific childhood year, Dan has been drifting for decades, desperate to shed his father’s legacy of despair, alcoholism, and
violence. Finally, he settles in a New Hampshire town with an AA community that sustains him and a job at a nursing home where the remnant of his shining power provides the crucial final comfort to the dying.  Aided by a prescient cat, he becomes “Doctor Sleep.” ****

This book moved me so deeply that I actually wept through the last two chapters – a combination of grief and relief – while reading at lunch in the cafeteria! This is a story that is so well crafted that although there are frequent references to “The Shining” throughout the book, “Dr. Sleep” can stand on its own, it is truly a phenomenal sequel.  Sequels can often be so disappointing that it feels as though they steal some of the mystery and impact of the first book (or movie) in a series. Not so in this case! The sequel here continues the story so naturally that it serves to enhance the lasting impact of “The Shining”.

I did reread “The Shining” before starting “Dr. Sleep” so that I would have the novel in my mind rather than the movie or TV adaptations. Since both of these differ so greatly from the novel, I was glad for the
refresher.  There were a number of things I had forgotten over the years and a couple I may have missed on my first read through. If it’s been a while since you’ve read “The Shining” or you’ve never read it, do yourself a favor and read that first, as it will enhance your reading experience. That said, I highly recommend this book and hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Dr. Sleep (The Shining Book 2) was published in September 2013 by Scribner and is available in hard back, paper back and digital down load.

****Parts of the synopsis were taken from the book jacket.

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