Wednesday, 10 June 2009

The Green Mile by Stephen King: Book 33, 2009

Title: The Green Mile by Stephen King
Genre: thriller/supernatural
Rating: 9/10
Comments: Stephen King is a master story teller and this is a fantastic example of his skills.  The story is narrated by an elderly man who worked on death row during the Depression.  He recalls the events of 1932 when they had three prisoners on death row - a large black Negro called John Coffey who can't tie his shoelaces but was convicted of raping and murdering 2 girls, a psychopathic young killer who insists on being called Billy the Kid with a special skill in causing trouble, and a pathetic Frenchman called Delacroix whose only friend is a tiny clever mouse.  His biggest problem, however, is with a bullying subordinate who uses his powerful connections to maintain his position despite his incompetence and unsuitability for the job. King cleverly weaves parallels between the narrator's past and present experiences to create a tale of justice and injustice, miracles and curses, vengeance and redemption.  Originally published as a 6-part serial, it translates well as a novel although there is a little repetition.  A gripping page turner that kept me up all night to the very end.

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