Mangy Cat's Reviews > Apt Pupil: A Novella in Different Seasons

Apt Pupil by Stephen King
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Mar 21, 12

bookshelves: audiobook, contemporary-fiction, horror
Read from March 19 to 21, 2012

Apt Pupil: First half, incredible. Second half, um...

The first half of Apt Pupil was creepily and absolutely compelling. King has a way of presenting the twisted and horrific in a way that urges a reader to keep reading, keep reading, keep reading--like watching a mangled body being extracted from a smashed car. You can't look away no matter how grotesque it is.

Sadly, also in true King form, somewhere in the middle of the book, the story took a turn, and the soft porn and profanity that King is prone to lean toward finally came out. Hey, if that's your thing, that's your thing. But I personally can't stomach it much anymore.

I do grant that it fits the character around which it surrounds, showing his stark change in personality as he gets deeper and deeper into the darkness of his soul. If we wanted to give it the old "serves the story" logic, yes, I can see that. The profanity, the sex, the violent fantasies--it all drives deeper and shows clearly (view spoiler) the state of psychopath. However, one has to wonder: is there a better way to write this that isn't so graphic?

King is a masterful storyteller. I read his books growing up, and I still acknowledge that he is an unsurpassed suspense and horror novelist. No one can tell a story like he can. I only wish he could do so (and truly, he has the talent to find a way) without riddling his novels with the blackness of profanity and explicit sex scenes.
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Mattster The only thing I don't like is the super natural twist a lot of his stories take. This book was not one of those and I enjoyed it from beginning to end.


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