Review: Revival by Stephen King

Stephen King's Revival leaves you nervous for what comes after this life

Stephen King's Revival leaves you nervous for what comes after this life

I just finished reading Revival by Stephen King.

I'm a big fan of King's work. I've read and enjoyed most of his books during the course of my lifetime. Revival is a work produced by the hands of a master at his craft. King makes writing look effortless. He makes his genre, the horrifying, the dark and unexplained look fresh, even though this is the 50th or more book he has produced along a similar vein.

I understand King's novels are an easy read for everyone. He builds stories slowly - you have to be patient and invest time in getting through the first hundred fifty pages sometimes just to figure out where he's trying to take the story - but he always rewards the loyal reader with an amazing payoff at the end.

Revival is no different. The story takes a while to develop. It opens with our lead character through as a very young boy in Rural Maine. We see his interactions with a local preacher, a young man who loses his beautiful young wife and small child in a tragic accident has a crisis of faith, a preacher who experiments with electricity and invents an electrical appliance that cures our main characters younger brother of a crippling vocal injury.

We follow our main character as he learns to play guitar, grows into a man, struggles with heroin addiction, and lives what to most of us would seem like a full and productive life.

But this is a Stephen King novel so it can't all be sunshine and roses. King bring the pastor back into our character's life at key moments and we start to see that the story has a theme, and the theme is this pastor's obsession and experimentation with a form of electricity he calls secret electricity, an energy source that has the power to heal, an energy source he doesn't fully understand. That power to heal comes with a price and our main character seems to be the only person in the world who can see that the pastor's is messing with forces that could expose the world to dark consequences.

King builds the story slowly, but leads us without tipping his hand to a final moment that is not fully known until it happens. I love that about his work. He can take us on a 400 page journey that still surprises on the very last page.

I recommend Revival for anyone who is a fan of supernatural thrillers or appreciates any fully and masterfully executed fiction. I definitely recommend Revival for King fans; it is King at his best. I recommend Revival with the caveat that you don't expect it to be over in a flash. Buy the book then set aside some time to see it through. Stick with it as the story builds. I promise you will be satisfied when you turn the final page.

Have you read it? What did you think?

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