Crikey moses it took me a while to get around to this didn’t it! But I’ve finally finished Stephen and Owen King’s latest book, ‘Sleeping Beauties.’
In short, the story follows a world where a ‘sleeping sickness’ (Aurora flu) has taken over. When women fall asleep, they become wrapped in a cotton like gauze and don’t wake up.
If they are woken they turn ferral, violent and attack. (#relatable- never wake me up from a nap)
However, one woman- Evie- is immune to this state.
In a world where men have been left to their own devices, this story encompasses our world today and the horrors that might occur if we were put into this position- plus the decision about what to do over Evie and her seeming immunity to the virus.
First off, let me point out how damn beautiful the cover art of this book is.
Not only that but when you take off the book cover, it reveals a gorgeous hidden design. I got a snake, but from traipsing around Waterstones there is definitely an alternate one (must resist buying just cos pretty)
I’ll get my issues out of the way first with this book.
Although Stephen King is one of my favourite authors, I still don’t understand his insistence on including so many characters in his books. I feel like he builds up the town and populates his world, but sometimes there were just too many people and too many lives to keep a handle on- which made me stop caring about them or just forgetting entirely who they even were. (THERE ARE 70 CHARACTERS LISTED AT THE START)
The other thing I found irritating was I feel that some of the essence of his classic story-telling wasn’t quite here this time. I can only assume it’s because his son Owen wrote a chunk of it, but I found some of the text a little rambling and dare I say.. boring? AGH I feel bad but it’s true. Some of the passages of text were just a little monotonous.
The book itself is around 700 pages, so quite a hefty read (although IT was like 1300 so this was peasy in comparison ha!)- and it’s written by Stephen and his son Owen King collaboratively.
Although there were a few issues, I’ve gotta say that I did still really enjoy this book.
I was reading a few Goodreads reviews of this book and someone pulled out this quote from the author’s note which I think summarises it perfectly:
“If a fantasy novel is to be believable, the details underpinning it must be realistic.”
I think this is so prevalent when looking at King’s writing style. Stephen and Owen King have used this book to create a world which is so true to life, that the fantasy and horror elements also become that much more believable.
I think the story and the concept are really interesting and the dynamics of a womanless world.
I also really liked the main characters that they created. You’ll have such strong feelings about them, their dynamics and their decisions and the fate of them.
However, there’s just a little something missing from this one for me. It’s a great idea, the story and plot are well executed- but it refuses to make it’s way into the legions of other Stephen King books I would rate highly.
Sorry lads but it’s a 3/5 for me.