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Finders Keepers (Thorndike Press large print core) Paperback – Large Print, March 29, 2016
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These two books... Mr. Mercedes and Finders Keepers, though the books didn't have any other worldly characters or monsters, doesn't make it any less terrifying and leaves to our imagination that there may be some very real monsters who may live next-door and we just don't know about it.
These two books are classic King which means a total page turner and gripping suspense to the last.
Stephen King has said that he doesn't write about extra ordinary people who deal with normal things but instead he writes about regular people who are in extraordinary situations. That's almost a direct quote from him.
I enjoyed every part of it. I listened to the audible versions of these two books and say that the narrator was one of the best that I've ever heard and was so completely appropriate for these Stephen King books. Only having Stephen King narrate them could have been any better.
I highly recommend these two books and state unequivocably that this is the best "King" writing that he is done in about five years.
Then we meet the Saubers who now reside in Morris’ old house; the parents of 13-year-old Peter and his younger sister Tina are struggling in both their marriage and their finances. Peter stumbles upon the buried treasure and parcels out the money to his parents anonymously through the mail with like $500 payments for several years. He meanwhile reads all the author’s writings and loves them and thinks about trying to sell the notebooks to guess who – the same guy who refused Morris. Meanwhile his sister Tina suspects Peter was the source of the monthly cash and tells retired cop Bill Hodges, the guy who solved the case in the prequel. Hodges tries to intervene with Peter before it gets too late.
When Morris gets out of prison and finds his trunk empty, he suspects the book dealer and on we go. The suspense heightens as he discovers it was Peter who took all; and he doesn’t care who he has to kill to get the stuff back.
We think this would have made a great novella – without the follow-up to the earlier book which was somewhat tangential. As is, it was sort of long and drawn out despite a catchy premise and a suspenseful ending. Several readers find deeper meaning in the obsession of first Morris and then Peter with the author and his works, but we didn’t work hard enough to figure out what that might be. We love our good books too, but not to the point of murder and skullduggery!
Bill Hodges is boring. A trilogy that is frequently called the "Bill Hodges trilogy" isn't really even about Bill Hodges because he is boring.
Holly Gibney is the most interesting recurring character, IMO. Brady may take second place in End of Watch , but he was pretty boring in Mr. Mercedes , and he was still more interesting than Hodges, and definitely more interesting than Morris Bellamy. Morris is one-note, and it's a harsh, jarring, evil note, at that. He's like Captain Ahab and his whale. He's awful, and yet somehow still boring.
This book has been compared to Misery due to some similar plot devices, but I'm telling you, Misery scared the living daylights out of me. It was horrible and terrifying and so well characterized that it was even scarier.
Morris Bellamy's got nothing on Annie Wilkes. Morris Bellamy reminds me more of Clayton Blaisdell, only without the streak of goodness that makes that character interesting.
TL;DR: Middle book syndrome is the pits. Here's hoping that End of Watch rocks my face off. Otherwise, I may turn into a cockadoodie brat.
Top international reviews
Finders Keepers, has a very different structure to the first book. Here we are experiencing the story through three characters, and it's not until the second part of the book do we meet the trio from the first. The first part of the book, has no real sort of suspense or horrific elements to it. Despite that, I still found myself very enthralled at the story telling. It took me a while to see where it was going, and I really had no way of guessing how it was all going to end.
After the first half of the book, the tension grows page by page, until exploding with a climax.
Undoubtedly, this is a bit of an odd one in King's writing. The amount of adverbs is unholy- I really cannot stand adverbs, one or two sprinkled is OK but man, did I cringe at some segments that were littered with adverbs. It did at times take me out of the experience, but nonetheless the story is quite strong here so I was quickly reeled back in.
Before I reached the second part this book was 5/10 for me, eventually, by the second part, everything that was read began to make perfect sense and it definitely became a strong 8/10 for me.
A few of the previous reviews for this one are scathing. One references Enid Blyton's Famous Five - blimey, I must have missed the one with gory murders, and an account of life in an American prison, including male-on-male rape - and suggests it is 'aimed at' children (!!), as it involves kiddies playing 'amateur detective'. It doesn't. Teenagers are involved, certainly, and get into anxiety-provoking trouble, but all the detective work is done by main characters of Mr. Mercedes: retired cop Hodges and Holly, a middle aged woman with mental health issues, assisted by Hodges' former odd job man, now a college student.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book - perhaps not quite so much as Mr. Mercedes, but a near thing. The 'reminders' of events from that first of the trilogy, I found slightly intrusive, but they are needed I guess for the info of readers who haven't read Mr. M.
I guess I have to plead guilty, lol, to being one of S. King's 'constant readers', but I am not completely uncritical of his work. One of his favourite things, baseball, leaves me stone cold; thankfully, there's none of that here. I thoroughly recommend this book, whether or not you are already a fan of King, and/or Bill Hodges.
One slight niggle would be that that I've seen a lot of these characters before with different names and guises in other King books so it would be nice to see future protagonists differ slightly.
Overall this was great and I'd recommend it. 8/10
However, getting the that last hundred pages was a really big struggle. I think had it been another writer, or if I hadn't already read the previous book in the trilogy I may have given up.
I'm glad I stuck through it because the ending really was good, but it was a looong journey getting there.
Just too much unnecessary filler which seems to be occupying more and more of Kings books lately.
All review can be found at http://lennonslair.blogspot.co.uk/
So why four stars? As tge headline states, this is not really a Hodges book, Bill, Jerome and Holly don't turn up until late on and they have zero impact on any of the events take place, literally none. Mr King must have had the idea and then thought 'this is a similar genre to Mr Mercedes so let's shoehorn it in to that universe'.
Its still an excellent book but it a strange feeling when you want to rush through the chapters about Bill the 'main' character just to get back to the gripping story
I did enjoy reading this book, but in terms of ranking amongst the rest of his work, I would not put it anywhere near the top of the list.
Whilst these themes feel like familiar stomping grounds for King, his characterisation here is sharp and on key, whilst the grounded tone of the book is somehow more chilling than much of his oeuvre.
Whilst we spend relatively little time with Bill Hodges and the ensemble of the first book in the trilogy, the build up for the third book in the trilogy is key to this book whilst not detracting from the main story.
Yes, it's a short read for a King novel but I did find it a genuine page turner and look forward to reading the Trilogy. I can't help but think horrible things are going to happen to Hodges in the 3rd volume.
Peter who finds the books and money hidden by Morrie is an engaging character and one that you are routing for all the way through. Morrie on the other hand is your worst nightmare and when the two finally meet - the showdown made the last few chapter just fly by. A real cat and mouse mystery and I would urge anyone to pick up this book and read. I finished it in under a week and now I will have to wait for the next one to come out.
I really enjoy most of King's work but I think the Hodges books are among his very best.
Excellent stories and brilliant characters. I'm looking forward to reading the next in the series.
I listened to the audio version of this book and a special mention for the outstanding Will Patton. He is the best narrator out there and you live the story through his superb narration.