AUTHOR: Stephen King
Overall: ★★★★ (4)
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
The latest from legendary master storyteller Stephen King, a riveting, extraordinarily eerie, and moving story about a man whose mysterious affliction brings a small town together—a timely, upbeat tale about finding common ground despite deep-rooted differences.
Although Scott Carey doesn’t look any different, he’s been steadily losing weight. There are a couple of other odd things, too. He weighs the same in his clothes and out of them, no matter how heavy they are. Scott doesn’t want to be poked and prodded. He mostly just wants someone else to know, and he trusts Doctor Bob Ellis.
In the small town of Castle Rock, the setting of many of King’s most iconic stories, Scott is engaged in a low grade—but escalating—battle with the lesbians next door whose dog regularly drops his business on Scott’s lawn. One of the women is friendly; the other, cold as ice. Both are trying to launch a new restaurant, but the people of Castle Rock want no part of a gay married couple, and the place is in trouble. When Scott finally understands the prejudices they face–including his own—he tries to help. Unlikely alliances, the annual foot race, and the mystery of Scott’s affliction bring out the best in people who have indulged the worst in themselves and others.
From Stephen King, our “most precious renewable resource, like Shakespeare in the malleability of his work” (The Guardian), Elevation is an antidote to our divisive culture, as gloriously joyful (with a twinge of deep sadness) as “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
Buy it HERE on Amazon!
THE CRITICAL POINTS
The cover says ‘ELEVATION a novel” but it really isn’t a novel. At only 146 pages, small pages at that, I’m guessing ELEVATION can’t be 50,000 words. Maybe I’m wrong, but I’d say it’s probably a novella. I read one review that called it a short story, and for Stephen King it is, but in reality its more than that.
WRITING: It’s Stephen King, so the writing is spot on.
STORY: Elevation takes ordinary people and puts them in an impossible situation. So basically, its your typical King story. I loved that there were two main stories going on here, the first being the communities lack of acceptance of the new lesbian couple that moved to town, and the second being Scott Carey’s inexplainable weight loss. At first glance it doesn’t seem that these two stories make sense together, but in the end everything comes together.
There wasn’t a lot of backstory. We don’t find out what brought Missy and Deirdre to town other than the affordable restaurant space. We don’t find out what causes Scott’s drastic weight loss. We don’t even find out what happens after everything comes to a head and he loses those final pounds, not really anyway. What we do find out, and the message behind this story, is how a single act of kindness can change everything. I won’t go into more details, if you want to know what I mean… read the book.
CHARACTERS: There are four main characters, with a few smaller characters sprinkled throughout. Again, not a lot of backstory and even less character development. Yet, somehow, it works for this book. As readers, we come into the lives of these characters for only a brief moment. We are the proverbial fly on the wall. It’s a very voyeuristic reading experience and at times you feel guilty for watching, but by the end you care for the characters you know so little about and, if you’re like me, you just might cry.
APPEARANCE: The cover is beautiful, but you won’t understand it until the end.
MY FAVORITE QUOTES:
“Not a wind, not even a high, exactly, but an elevation. A sense that you had gone beyond yourself and could go farther still.”
“Gravity is the anchor that pulls us down into our graves.”