Posted: September 26, 2017
One book, two Kings! That is what we get in Sleeping Beauties. Stephen and Owen King have written the book together and after having read books by both authors I have to say that it’s almost as if a third voice came through in the story. It’s impossible for me to say who wrote what. I could guess but that would be on the presumption that Stephen writes more gore than Owen and therefore he would have written those parts of Sleeping Beauties but I don’t think that would be true or fair. In interviews, they both say that they passed the manuscript between each other and edited each other so many times that they themselves hardly know who wrote what.
The book explores what happens when all the women in the world goes to sleep and don’t wake up. This happens all over the world but we get to follow the people in a small Appalachian town. The story has a lot of characters (there’s even an index of the most important one in the book’s beginning) and you need to keep your focus to keep track of them all. The main character is the police chief Lila and her husband Clint. Clint is the local women’s prison shrink and he gets his hands full when the women starts going to sleep. As the women goes to sleep they become shrouded in a cocoon-like gauze. It starts in the face and in the beginning some people try to rip it off the sleeping women but what happens when they try is that the woman wakes up all crazy trying to kill the person doing the removing.
This happens all over the world but it all starts with the mysterious woman Eve Black who appears from nowhere and is immune to what’s happening to every other woman. Is Eve the reason for this happening or is she the solutions? This question divides the men who now must decide if they should kill her or save her. No one knows but everyone has an opinion. An opinion that divides the men in two sides and both sides are willing to fight for their beliefs.
I really like Sleeping Beauties. I went into it not knowing that much about it. The previews we got before the book was release were pretty vague on what kind of book this would be. Once I started it though all pieces fell into place and made perfect sense. The characters are as good as I was expecting from Stephen and Owen and the plot likewise. And the ending is open to interpretations. The entire book is filled with choices that the characters must make and when we reach the end it’s very much up to the reader to decide if the characters chose the right one.
Sleeping Beauties is a great book. A great collaboration and it shows that both Stephen and Owen are great writers (as if anyone doubted it) and have the ability to draw characters that you care about, both good and evil. And the ending got me thinking about the choices the characters made long after I closed the book.
If you choose to get the audio edition of sleeping Beauties you get 8,5 minutes of conversation with Owen and Stephen King at the end. In it they talk about how they came up with the idea for the book and how Owen used to record audio books for his father. Very interesting.
Lilja's final words about Sleeping Beauties
I still think that Lila’s name should have been Lilja and that it was a spelling error that no one cached until it was to late... Well, OK, maybe not…