Bag of Bones by Stephen King

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Book Information  
AuthorStephen King
TitleBag of Bones
Book Reviews / Comments (submitted by readers)
Submitted by Jo 
(Jan 23, 2006)

The first sentence on the inside flap of Bag of Bones sums it up pretty well. "Stephen King's most gripping and unforgettable novel, Bag of Bones, is a story of grief, a lost love's enduring bonds, a new love haunted by secrets of the past, and a child caught in a terrible crossfire." The back states that it is a haunted love story. That's another good way to put it.

For me, Bag of Bones is the most unforgettable novel I've ever read. The characters stayed with me long after I finished reading it. They were so real! I feel like I know them.

This book takes an in depth, touching look at grief. Novelist Mike Noonan is the main character of Bag of Bones. He loses his wife Jo at a young age. The book starts out with his grief over her. Though she is not alive in the book, she is a very real character. Its amazing for any book characters to be so life-like, but when they are dead on top of that, its even more amazing. This showcases King's one of a kind talent. As a fellow writer, I think it would be nearly impossible to create such a life-like dead character. Not only was Jo very real, she was also instantly likeable. I loved her. Mike was also a wonderful, loveable character for me. The book is told from his perspective, so the reader knows every thought and feeling he has. Its like you're walking right with him throughout the book.

The aspect of the lost love's enduring bonds, that being the love between Mike and Jo, was what touched me the most. Mike flashes back all the time to memories of his happy marriage with Jo. He also has a lot to learn about secrets she kept in the last year of her life. A lot of the book deals with him trying to find out about them, and then with what he finds out. I won't give away any spoilers here, so I won't give any details away on that. If you haven't read the book, I want you to be surprised. Also, their love endures after her death. This is where the "haunted love story" part comes in at.

While Mike still loves Jo four years after her death (the time the book takes place), he also meets a new young woman, Mattie Devore, that he falls for.

Kyra is Mattie's three year old daughter, the child caught in a terrible crossfire.

Bag of Bones touches on every emotion. I laughed and I cried several times throughout it. It is a sad book, yes, but its beautiful at the same time. It is classified as a horror novel because it has its share of creepy moments, but its the love aspect that stood out to me.

This is my favorite book. Its very visual - all of the characters and places in it are crystal clear to me. I loved the good characters, Mike, Jo, Mattie, and Ki (Kyra,) and hated the bad ones. Again, as I said, they are all very real.

It is a slow paced book; its supposed to be that way. Stick with it, its worth the read. After reading it, I appreciated the pace of it. I think its partly because of the pace that made the characters stay with me so much. The longer it takes you to get to know them, the realer they become, and the longer they are with you.

I've read this book twice so far, and I loved it just as much, if not more, the second time around as I did the first.

Submitted by 
(Jul 16, 2005)

Bag of Bones, in my avid Stephen King reader's opinion, is TOP of the line! I was literally unable to put this book down! Two days at a time I awoke to where I was beginning to become unable to separate the visions on the pages from reality. EXCELLENT!! Cujo, Pet Semetary, Misery, Delores Claiborne and Bag of Bones are the greatest -to me- in my SK library and I have been anxiously awaiting a 'topper' to the BOBs.

Submitted by Anonymous
(Apr 17, 2001)

This was King's first big bone to the literary set to become respectable. It didn't make it. The first 100 pages are unbelievably boring (unless you find Rite Aids scary, and care about writer's block), then it picks up, but no sooner than another 100 pages and King seemingly abandons his literary pretensions and falls back on what he knows best, his own brand of blue collar scariness. This indeed saves the novel, and his audience, but then it's not one of his better stories either. A haunted house with a scary old basement, a mean old man and his mean old secretary, a town full of malaise, racism, and skeletons in their closets, it's all pretty familiar. A love affair thrown into the mix almost clicks, if not for the preposterousness of the entire situation. After finishing, one will get an eerie sense of a rehash of "It", but at about 1/2 of the word count. 2.75 out of 5 stars.

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