Just after Sunset by Stephen King
It is always so hard to review a collection of short stories. It is almost impossible to maintain the reader’s interest every time. And many modern authors depend on literary symbolism and other conventions to help them tell the story while reducing the word count.
But Stephen King is unashamedly a popular author. He will never win a literature prize. He is happy to write for his readers, meeting them at their own level and carrying them away in the story. This he does very successfully in this collection of 12 stories.
Picking my favourite from this collection is hard. I actually rationed my reading in this book. Only 1 story a day. And as a result, I thoroughly enjoyed every single story. Each one is very different, but all delicious.
Probably it would be best to compare this book to The Twilight Zone, not the silly 70s remake, but the original Rod Serling series. Each week a strange tale would be revealed, some scifi, some horror, and some just spooky. But each week you lined up for more.
This book is very much like that series. King’s tribute to 9/11, The Things They Left Behind, was warm and personal, but with generous lashings of the supernatural. Willa is really a love story, but with a twist that verges on the macabre.
I am very glad that King has returned to writing short stories. I just hope he continues.