Doctor Sleep

Posted: September 23, 2013
Category: Books
Doctor Sleep picks up about 35 years after The Shining. Danny Torrance or Dan as he’s called now is now all grown up. He still struggles with the memories from The Overlook Hotel though and as an adult he is very much like his father in certain ways. Like his father he’s an alcoholic, like his father ha has a lot of rage inside of him but unlike his father, Dan is going to A.A. meetings, something that might save his life… Dan works at a hospice facility where he helps the dying to pass over to the other side. That’s why he’s gotten the nickname Doctor Sleep and the book it’s title.

To this King adds another child Abra who has an even stronger shine than Dan. She has ever since she was born and from time to time she’s tried to show her parents that something is going to happen but they never understand. They do however start to worry as she gets older and starts putting spoons to the ceiling.

At the same time we learn about a group of people, or almost people at least called The True Knot. They were all regular people at one time but now they are something else. Like vampire’s they feed on other people. But not their blood. They feed on fear. That’s why they gather when a disaster happens, to suck the fear from people. But what’s even better for them is to torture kids with the Shine. And who’s better than Abra? Right, no one. So as The True Knot sets out to get her she seeks help from Dan and it’s soon very clear that there’s going to be a confrontation…and an ugly one at best.

The first thing we get in the book is a recollection of what’s happened between The Shining and Doctor Sleep and once you have read that you know pretty much all you need to know to read Doctor Sleep. In other words you don’t need to have read The Shining before you read Doctor Sleep. However, if you have read The Shining Doctor Sleep will get so much better. Why? Well, because you’ll know all the back history of Dan and you will pick up small details that you’ll surely miss otherwise. But King has written the book so that both people that has read The Shining and those how hasn’t can enjoy it. Doctor Sleep is a very worthy follow up to The Shining but with that said though I’d also like to point out that Doctor Sleep isn’t anywhere near as scary as The Shining.

And as usual King is at his best when he creates characters. I love the characters in the book; Dan, Abra, Rose the Hat and Crow Daddy just to mention a few. The way King describes Dan’s anxiety for what he does while drunk. You really feel for him and I love every minute of it. My only concern now is that someone will try to turn it into a movie. I don’t want to reveal too much but you’ll see what I mean when you read the book. To me it seems impossible to do it justice on the screen. As a book though, it’s a wonderful experience that I’m very grateful that I got to experience.

Lilja's final words about Doctor Sleep:

I got the chance to listen to the audio version of Doctor Sleep and I like Will Patton’s narration a lot. He really gets the characters and gives them each a unique identity. His voice works very well for narration and together with King’s story it creates a good collaboration.

I enjoyed Doctor Sleep a lot both as book and audio and as I said, if you haven’t read The Shining, take the time to do that before you read Doctor Sleep. You’ll enjoy Doctor Sleep even more if you have The Shining fresh in your memory!