Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Duma Key Book Review

Duma Key tells the tale of an island with the same name. Stephen King's 2008 release explores themes of divorce, loss and art. Edgar Freemantle was a successful contractor from Minnesota with a happy marriage and loving daughters, but that was his "other life." After an accident nearly takes his life (and succeeds in taking an arm), Edgar moves to a Floridian island, Duma Key. There his artwork (once merely a hobby of doodling) quickly turns into impressive paintings with the substantial power to affect reality. It wouldn't be a King novel, though, if it didn't somehow turn bad.
Fans of King will surely like this novel, as it's being heralded as among his top work. I think many will be able to relate to the many topics included in the novel, as well.
I particularly liked how the plot unraveled itself almost effortlessly. I started the novel with little intentions or expectations and soon I found myself wrapped up in a world of art, sandy beaches, friendships, murder and magic. I enjoyed the story and where it took me, the characters I met along the way, and the sights I viewed while living the story with those characters.
At 600+ pages, it's a bit of a long read and for me, the ending fell a tad flat. King fans will think it adequate for the most part, but I found myself wanting more from the end. That's not to say that I didn't enjoy the novel, though.
After finishing Duma Key, I found myself wanting to read something a bit more upbeat or optimistic. The novel is deep and heavy with realism which I enjoyed very much, but once I was finished, I wanted a bit more optimism.
I think most will enjoy the book and the way its plot and characters are developed. Edgar (and many of the other characters) are much different people by the end, but the evolution isn't apparent or identifiable. It's slow and subtly revealed to the reader throughout the novel.
I also loved the setting of Duma Key. I felt calmed by the island and its environment. I think King did a good job of pulling the reader into this isolated world. I identified with Edgar and felt a definite emotional attachment to his character, which could be why I needed a break from such strong emotional content when I finished the novel. Although the end felt a little of a letdown, I did enjoy the novel as a whole.
Tonia Jordan is an author on http://www.Writing.Com which is a site for Writers.
Her portfolio can be found at http://www.Writing.Com/authors/spidergirl so stop by and read for a while.

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