Yesterday should have been a day of great productivity and motivation – I didn’t have to babysit, so I had the whole day to work! But sometimes that gets me in trouble…if I feel like I have the availability to putz around killing time, I totally will. Bring on the pressure and deadlines to really kick my butt into gear!
Plus, I was near the thrilling conclusion of my book. So clearly I needed to go to the pool to
finish it take a little extended lunch break. Right? Right.
I’m not going to lie, “11/22/63″ by Stephen King is one of the more bizarre books that I have read recently – and that is saying something, because my last two books have been about vampires and witches, and a woman who kidnaps a baby and raises her as her own!
The premise of the book is that one man, Jake Epping, sets out on a journey to change the course of history – by stopping John F. Kennedy’s assassination (hence the title). He journeys through a portal back to 1958, and begins his quest. Still with me? I promise, it isn’t as strange as it seems!
One of the big things that I loved about this book is King’s attention to detail in terms of describing American life in the late 50′s and early 60′s. I feel like I have a little better understanding of what my grandparents (and parents as toddlers) lived through, what their lives were like. Just the sheer difference in manners of speaking alone was fascinating!
If you are at all a history buff, this book will be totally up your alley. It documents all kinds of events, both major and minor, that happen during the five-year span leading up to Kennedy’s assassination, and actually made me realize how little I know about that time period. Sure, I know the big things – Cuban Missile Crisis, race relations, the things in our high-school history books that I
hated read. But there was so much more that went on (obviously.)
The parts of the book that lost me were when King started delving into the whole time-space continuum/parallel universes/multiple realities business (I can seriously hear my father gagging at that sentence). But luckily, there isn’t very much of that – at its heart, this is a story about fitting in, about learning the customs of a new place, and about the relationships that ensue.
It took me awhile to slog through it, mainly because it was so long! But I was never really bored with the storyline – there is an undercurrent of suspense that pulses beneath the surface throughout, reminding you that no matter how comfortable Jake becomes in his new surroundings, he is there to do a job. The ending was enough to make my head spin…but that’s all I’m going to say about that!
Really, this book just proves how versatile Stephen King is as an author. There is certainly a reason that his name is a household one! Even if sci-fi isn’t your thing, I still think this book is worth a read.
I’m off to be a little more productive this morning…