Mackay's Reviews > 11/22/63

11/22/63 by Stephen King
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's review
May 23, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: modern-novel
Read in May, 2012

Stephen King is a great storyteller; he can make many mundane things compelling. I've always liked his non-horror better than his horror (e.g., Delores Claiborne), so this book intrigued me the moment I heard about it. 11/22/63 was the sea-change moment for my generation. There was Before, and there was After; naturally a book about attempting to change all that, by a master, became a must-read.

And I enjoyed the ride for the most part. The modern man visiting the near-past, encountering such strangeness in mind-set and culture--all that is very well done. That's probably the story King wanted to tell, and he hooked it on the Kennedy assassination as a draw. Which is the problem with this book. There's the story of the protagonist and his new life and friends and love, and then there's the whole "but I came here to change things," and the two fail to mesh all that well. Yeah, the need to investigate Oswald throws in some conflict among aforesaid protag et al., but. And after a while, the stranger in a strange land with a mission thing got a bit tedious. Then the climax, denouement, and resolution just felt rushed and (oddly for King), pat and not really believable.

So, after spending enjoyable time in the past, this reader was let down and unsatisfied at the end.

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