Up front I will say that I’m a Stephen King fan. On his worst days he’s better than most writers on their best days. His descriptive abilities and attention to detail paint mental pictures with a texture that is unmatched. Remember The Beatles? The world’s most famous and most popular band? They had 20 number 1 hits. Stephen King is The Beatles of writers. At least for me he is.
Although The Beatles had twenty #1 hits, with twelve albums there were probably about 100 other songs from those albums that weren’t #1 hits. Stephen King has had a lot of #1 hits. Revival may not be a #1 hit, but it’s not bad either.
The story of Revival follows the long and winding road of Jamie Morton’s life from the time the young boy meets his towns new pastor until Jamie is an elderly man who witnesses the strange end of the man he had met so many years before. In Revival Mr. King weaves a path for Jamie Morton that you are more than happy to follow through his happiness and heartbreaks. Strangely, Jamie’s path through life seems intertwined with that of his childhood pastor who, after a personal tragedy, turns away from religion as we know it to something that he believes may answer all his questions.
In order to protect others, repay a debt of gratitude, and possibly satisfy his own curiosity Jamie becomes his accomplice, helping him see his final experiment through to the end. And for me as a reader that was where the only bump in the long and winding road of this story appeared. Through the first 95% of this story I was all in, hook, line, and sinker. Loved it. Rooted for the protagonist. Wanted to figure out the mystery. Couldn’t wait to get to the next chapter. Then in the climactic scene, almost out of the blue Stephen King made it just a tad too weird. Following the climactic scene there was a nice wrap up and post script for the characters with even a little chilling/haunting reminder of what might be just behind the curtain that we can’t see.
Would I recommend this book? Absolutely, but temper your expectations just a little. It’s not an all-time classic, literary Hall of Fame Stephen King novel, but it’s still Stephen King. It was a fun ride that I enjoyed from start to finish, and you know what? Just because I didn’t jump for joy at one scene doesn’t mean that I’m right or that you won’t love what I didn’t. It was a fun read and I don’t regret the money or time invested in it.
Have a great Friday everybody! ~Phil