Asra Ghouse's Reviews > Skeleton Crew

Skeleton Crew by Stephen King
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Jul 25, 11

bookshelves: thrillers
Recommended for: People who like horror!
Read from May 01 to 06, 2011

I reverted back to writing the traditional way, thanks to this book. Stepehen King stirred the old writer in me. So inspiring is his work. One just has to read it and savour it. For instance this particular quote of his from, 'Mrs Todd's Shortcut'
There is zero and there is eternity, and there is mortality, but there is no ultimate.
has captivated me. I just cannot get over it. Simplicity and thoughtfulness all in a sentence. Flawless and effortless.

Skeleton Crew is a collection of 22 short stories. They're all dark and deal with horror. Stories apart, his notes at the end of each story are more fun to read. His style is extremely witty. Sometimes, I don't know if he's praising the reader (myself) or insulting.
I've included a few notes here on a few of the stories- such things as I thought might interest the casual reader. But if you're even more casual than that, I assume you can close the book without a qualm- you won't be missing much.
Reading this from the notes, I could only laugh softly at his genius. So I am a casual reader, I guess!

I will be mentioning a few thoughts and views of mine on certain stories from the collection. True Stephen King fans can proceed with reading it. Others however, can jump to the last paragraph ;)

Here There be Tygers
A comic story of a third grader who derives a sadist pleasure in knowing his teacher is gonna be killed by a tiger in the boys' toilet. King writes in his notes, 'You know how kids are' and all I could do was laugh out loud reading it. I suspect this story developed by one of his childhood romances on plotting the scary teacher's death. Here There be Tygers is my favourite story from the collection.

The Mist
This is the first story in the book. It's about an attack by gigantic insects, birds and octopuses in a city. Stephen King, apparently, thought of this story while shopping with his wife at a supermarket. (How cool is that?) I usually get my ideas for writing while traveling or when I'm in the bathroom.

The story is based in a supermarket. It deals with survival, strategies, strength, sex and surrender. In his words the ending is 'A conclusion in ambiguity that allowed the reader or viewer to make up his own mind about how things ended.'

One of my favourite lines from this story:
"What is talent? The curse of expectation."
The Jaunt
This story is set in the year 2307 at a space station. Jaunt is a term which means (in the story) teleportation. In particular I wish to share a line from the story:
'Your mind can be your best friend. It can keep you amused even when there is nothing to read, nothing to do. But it can turn on you, when it's left with no input for too long. Which means it savages itself, perhaps consumes itself in an act of auto-cannibalism.'
Paranoid: A chant
Thank God! I am not paranoid. I know that for sure now.
There were the first thoughts that came to me when I finished this short poem. Oh Yeah! This particular story is presented as a short poem. Free verse, it is. It talks of a person who becomes extremely paranoid, to the extent that he does not leave his room as he thinks there is someone at his door waiting to kill him. It invokes pity for people with psychological disorders.

Word Processor of the Gods
A creepy and weird story. One can more or less guess the theme of the story by reading the title. Hence, when it (view spoiler) happened, I wasn't surprised (or shocked). Predictable though it was, it certainly is the second best story from the collection.

I might come back and write about the others, in particular about Survivor Type, Mrs Todd's Shortcut, The Raft, The Man Who would Not Shake Hands; albeit I suppose this collection suffices my review.

The thing about Stephen King is when he writes one gets inception-ized (You'd know what I mean if you've watched Inception). Final two words: Read it!!!
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