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Book Review – Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King

February 13, 2011 4 comments

Book Description:

I believe there is another man inside every man, a stranger . . . writes Wilfred Leland James in the early pages of the riveting confession that makes up “1922,” the first in this pitch-black quartet of mesmerizing tales from Stephen King. For James, that stranger is awakened when his wife, Arlette, proposes selling off the family homestead and moving to Omaha, setting in motion a gruesome train of murder and madness.

In “Big Driver,” a cozy-mystery writer named Tess encounters the stranger along a back road in Massachusetts when she takes a shortcut home after a book-club engagement. Violated and left for dead, Tess plots a revenge that will bring her face-to-face with another stranger: the one inside herself.

Fair Extension,” the shortest of these tales, is perhaps the nastiest and certainly the funniest. Making a deal with the devil not only saves Dave Streeter from a fatal cancer but provides rich recompense for a lifetime of resentment.

When her husband of more than twenty years is away on one of his business trips, Darcy Anderson looks for batteries in the garage. Her toe knocks up against a box under a worktable and she discovers the stranger inside her husband. It’s a horrifying discovery, rendered with bristling intensity, and it definitively ends “A Good Marriage“.

Like Different Seasons and Four Past Midnight, which generated such enduring films as The Shawshank Redemption and Stand by Me, Full Dark, No Stars proves Stephen King a master of the long story form.

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Speaking as a King fan who wasn’t too impressed with his bloated (and dragging) last novel Under the Dome, I’m happy to report that with this four-novella collection Full Dark, No Stars, Stephen King has his writing mojo back! Yes, the Kindle edition is a bit expensive at $14.99, and yes, it would have been nice if it was at least the same price as the paperback, but I’m pretty happy with this one. Full Dark, No Stars is a more-than-solid effort from Stephen King, with King once again excelling in telling us stories about ordinary people who find themselves in pretty horrifying situations (that we all hope & pray we never have to deal with ourselves. Ever).

What I’m most impressed with is how authentic and distinctive each voice is in the four stories. A farmer recounts the unravelling of his life after he commits a murder in “1922“. In “Big Driver,” a cozy mystery author, who is raped and left for dead, exacts revenge from those who wronged her. A dying man makes a deal with the devil in “Fair Extension” and in “A Good Marriage“, a wife discovers that a monster lurks within her loving husband of 30 years. All four stories are richly detailed and superbly characterized with very real characters that will have you cringing or shuddering with them as they face their hells on earth. The strongest stories for me were “A Good Marriage” and “Big Driver” – maybe because they featured strong women characters who I liked and could sympathize with, whether or not I agreed with the choices they made. If I were to pick the weakest, it would have to be “Fair Extension” which ended on an IMO unfinished way – I just figure that deals with the devil ought to always result in some personal bad consequences 😉

For those worried that the stories are too scary, I wouldn’t really describe them as outright scary. They’re gruesome and grim and can be creepy – but not the type that makes you scared of the dark afterwards. Like I’ve said, I thought that Stephen King really delivered in showing us the dark side of humanity in this book, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Full Dark, No Stars to both the longtime King fan or to new readers who have yet to read him.

Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King is available on Amazon as a Kindle edition ($14.99), Hardcover ($15.17), Paperback ($9.99) or Audible Audio Edition ($23.95).

The eBook is also available for $14.99 on B&N Nook, Sony eBookstore. Kobo Books has the book listed at $16.29.

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New Game App for the Kindle – Symdoku Unbound #1

February 13, 2011 1 comment

Here’s another new game app for the Kindle! It’s from the publisher that gave us Sudoku Unbound #1 and Wordoku Unbound #1.

Symdoku Unbound #1 (A Puzzle Collection)‘ by Puzzazz is available on the Amazon Kindle site for $2.99! Just click here to download!

Game Description

Enjoy the challenge of Sudoku? Then this uniquely designed puzzle book is just for you. Symdoku takes the original Sudoku to a whole new level using shapes, instead of numbers.

Fortunately, you don’t have to draw the symbols, just match them up with the corresponding keys, and you’re on your way. This unbound puzzle collection gives you a great solving experience right on the page. Of course, you can use in-cell notes as you solve, just like you do on paper. If you’re stuck, move on to a different puzzle — you can always turn back to that page later. Or, get a hint and keep going.

You’ll be both challenged and delighted with this book of 100 puzzles that fit your personal skill level, because you can change from easy to medium to hard or back at any time. Whatever your skill and solving style, you’ll appreciate that each puzzle can be played at three levels of difficulty. Enjoy!

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Be sure to check out Amazon’s Popular Kindle Games & Active Content page for a review of all the games available!

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FREE Amazon MP3 Download of the Day – Dead Man Walking by The Script

February 13, 2011 Leave a comment

The track ‘Dead Man Walking‘ by the Irish alternative rock band The Script (who broke into the US with the hit Breakeven) from the album, Science & Faith (U.S. Bonus Track Version), is available for FREE download as Amazon’s FREE MP3 of the day!

Click here to download the FREE song!

And if you like it, check out The Script’s other albums!

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