Teaser Tuesday: The Outsider

Teaser Tuesday I haven’t picked up a Stephen King title in almost 20 years, but for some reason, the plot of a murdered child whose accused killer is the town’s upstanding little league coach, investigated by a lead detective who’s confounded by the impossible case appealed to me. 

The Outsider | Stephen King, 561 pgs.

outsiderPerhaps the creepy cover compelled me to it. Channeling the look and art of the Upside Down, from a certain television series I’m obsessively devoted to, probably weighed in to my decision. Whatever the stimulus, I’m entangled in the thick of it now, which means it’s time for another Teaser Tuesday.

TEASER TUESDAY is a weekly book meme hosted by The Purple Booker. Anyone can join, just open your current read to a random page and choose two ‘teaser’ sentences (no spoilers, just enticing bait to lure would-be readers) and share them in a blog post or in the comments.

Thinking that if a person did begin considering supernatural possibilities, that person would no longer be able to think of himself as a completely sane person and thinking about one’s sanity was maybe not a good thing. It was like thinking about your heartbeat, if you had to go there you might already be in trouble.

-ch. 17, disc 7, track 7, min. 1:47-2:10

Without giving away any of the plot, about a third of the way in I noticed a strange phenomenon occurring: a twinge developed in the pit of my stomach during my commute to and from work (I’m listening to the audio book). It took me a while to realize the feeling was anxiety roiling in my belly directly due to the story. Rarely has a novel affected me physically in this way. I don’t know if that’s a positive or negative recommendation, but I do know I wouldn’t use the word “enjoy” when it comes to reading this story, filled with chill dread would be more accurate, it’s beyond dark. 

Have you read any recent SK, what did you think? Do you have a favorite King novel? Mine are The Stand and Cycle of the Werewolf.

6 thoughts on “Teaser Tuesday: The Outsider

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  1. Hmm, how recent is this one? When was it written? I only ask because I’ve noticed that as Stephen King has gotten older, his style has changed a lot from supernatural horrors to more everyday horrors. I just read a somewhat recently published short story book of his, Bazaar of Bad Dreams, and he very much has “regular old” mortality on his mind in a way he never did before – the things that seem to keep him up at night now are not monsters in the closet or rainstorms of frogs, but the thought of your spouse suddenly dropping dead while she ducks into a convenience store for a pack of gum, or the fear of chronic pain. The chill dread, as you call it, of a town probably torn apart (I’m guessing, haven’t read it myself, although I’m curious now) by one of its own being accused of something so unspeakable is very much up that everyday domestic horrors alley he’s been walking down for a while now.

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    1. It’s his newest, 2018. I’m reminded why I stopped reading him bc it’s bloated and repetitive. As in Bazaar (I’m intrigued in that now), seemingly fixated on mortal domestic fears, with a sinister twist. It seems even the King is susceptible to thoughts of mortality as he ages, which must be, for him, conjurer of nightmares, the ultimate fear?

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      1. Agreed. It’s strange that he’s veered back into “Are you being paid by the word?” territory, because for a while there (around ’08 or ’09 or whenever Under the Dome came out) I found his writing to be incredibly trim and to-the-point in a truly delightful, breathless kind of way (Under the Dome being a perfect example; it’s 1,300 freaking pages and it dances!)

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        1. Um, at 1300 words, I’ll take YOUR word for it. The Stand was pretty weighty though and I loved it fiercely, give me some good ol’ end of days King anytime.

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