Stephen King’s newest novel will ‘grab’ every style of reader

No place for literary snobbery in the Agassiz library bookshelves

I am not a book snob. Honest. I don’t judge what people read, and as far as I am concerned, all reading is good. Maybe it was owning a book store many years ago and depending on sales of paperbacks and magazines, not just hardcover editions the likes of Les Miserable to maintain me that keeps me literally humble.

Maybe it was the lecture I got from a librarian/mentor when I DARED roll my eyes as Harlequin romances were being discussed as a valuable part of a library collection. Maybe it is my own deep, sincere belief that reading a comic book is really reading.

As a result of all this and more (reading Nancy Drew as a youngster too?) when asked what my favorite Danielle Steele book is, I have an answer (Zoya … It has Russians and their revolution and I have Russia heritage – thank you, Granny ).

When people ask which Stephen King book I recommend, I can answer that too. I have not read a lot of King, Cujo and Pet Sematary are just not the kind of stories that draw me in. No judgment – vive le difference, right? Stephen King has written a lot of books though, and there are some that do not involve horrible clowns, crazed animals or things that go bump in the cornfield.

Stand By Me – classic; Delores Claiborne gave me a motto for my crankier days — “Sometimes, Delores, being a b**ch is all a woman’s got”.

As of yesterday one of King’s books now holds a place in my personal top-reads list. It is his newest, 11/22/63. This is the title and it is a familiar date. The date of JFK ‘s assassination is the core event around which this novel turns (this is not a spoiler, it says it on the cover!)

How do I explain without ruining the fun of finding out how present day and what I call ‘the graffiti years’ feed this big, fat. juicy story? It is written in the first person, so it has a voyeuristic, intimate feel as you read (or listen, it’s an audiobook, too).

It is not horrific, but there is no absence of suspense. His use of foreshadowing is superb; ‘Foreshadowing’ is when a writer offers teasers of what is to come in a story. See, I learned something in my English classes at AESS!

These glimpses of future happenings kept me turning each of the many pages. There are ordinary, nasty, weird, and famous people throughout. There are moments where the storyline is bright, but do wait for it, the King darkness always makes its appearances.

This book is so awesome, readers of many genres will enjoy it-historical fiction, fantasy, relationship stories, mystery readers will find it engaging. And the writing is good! King is a pro for good reason, and its not just the sales. Dawg, this boy can scratch out the words!

It is expressive, comic, and direct and for a big fat read, and it does not drag. If you have ever wondered what would happen if just one, or two, events in history could get a do-over and the effect on the space-time continuum (I love that Star Trek phrase, forgive me putting it in my book review), read this.

If you love trying to figure out a puzzle, this is the book for you. If you like historical references and famous folk of the past in your books, open this. If you love a bit of Star Trek … this book is for you!

Crazy, I know, it has it all. Let me know what you think of this book, I do love over-the-counter book discussions.

On the topic of book discussions, the monthly meeting of the library book club Hooked on Books is on Wed. April 18 at 6:30 p.m., with a discussion of the book Tuckahoe Slidebottle. What is going to make this a fun club night is the presence of the book’s author Neil McKinnon. It’s a really enjoyable read, and will be great to pick the author’s brain. Copies are available for anyone who wants to join me in this month’s book chat as Jaquelynne has to be away, taking care of other business.

Library book club is just one thing your Agassiz library is offering during Earth Week. You are going to have the chance to visit and take part in a new FVRL project, that gets library service and awareness on the road. It involves a cool, jazzed up car – complete with plasma screen, sound system, book giveaways and more. It will make its first Agassiz appearance at the ACE school BBQ and Silent Auction Fundraiser, on April 17, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Agassiz Legion. Come buy a burger, make a bid and check out your library, Live and on Tour.

On a quieter note during Earth Week, there is a Pajama Storytime for little ones on Thursday, April 19 at 6:30 p.m. Dress in jammies, bring your teddy and cozy up for our ‘Earth Dreams’. There is still the regular Storytime on Friday morning at 10:15 a.m. Saturday, April 21, we will be busy-busy. We have our Earth Day Plant-in at 1 p.m., with experts and inspiration from our local Communities in Bloom group. Bring your container and we will have dirt and plants for all of us to start working on this year’s green thumb. Please call us or drop in to register. It is a free event, but we want to have enough plants for everyone. Also on Saturday at 1 p.m., we are having our first Annual What’s in Your Attic? event. Registration is a must for, so drop by the library and get a ticket to reserve your time with our professional collectible valuators. If you have some old junk that might be an antique or a collectible, come on down, and get the real story on your hidden treasures!

I want to take just a few lines to congratulate all the Observer’s People’s Choice winners. It feels great to recognize the wonderful people, places and things to do in our litter berg. We are certainly not lacking, and reading about our ‘bests’ is a reminder of why I am still here after all these years – why we raised family here, why we live and shop here and why we are proud to have our children and grandchildren consider Agassiz-Harrison home. Thank you, Observer for making this public thank you possible.

In the meantime, enjoy Spring. Dust off your outdoor reading chair. Your library always has free advice, free events and free books available to you – does it get any better? See you in the stacks!