295 Following

Portable Magic

Reading, for me, is entertainment and an escape from the real world. But it can also inform and stretch the boundaries of the life I live.

Currently reading

A Wizard of Earthsea (The Earthsea Cycle, #1)
Ursula K. Le Guin
Whisper Network
Chandler Baker
Progress: 54 %
Invisible Man
Ralph Ellison
Progress: 28 %
The Mystery at Lilac Inn
Carolyn Keene
100 Hair-Raising Little Horror Stories
Gary Raisor, Richard Chizmar, Al Sarrantonio, Avram Davidson
Progress: 70/512 pages
Leading Change
John P. Kotter
Peanuts Classics
Charles M. Schulz
Progress: 66 %
The Bungalow Mystery
Carolyn Keene
Progress: 192/192 pages
The Bungalow Mystery #3
Carolyn Keene
Progress: 192/192 pages
The Mystery at Lilac Inn
Russell H. Tandy, Mildred Benson, Carolyn Keene

Mr. Mercedes ★★★★☆

Mr Mercedes - Stephen King

Well plotted and plausible thriller, but as usual with King’s books, it was the characters and their individual stories that drove me on through most of the book. The “what happens next” takes the co-pilot seat in the last third of the book, turning into a real nail-biter at the end.


King’s genius, to me, is his ability to bring fascinating characters to life and in the story game of “what-if”. I nearly always find romantic relationships between his characters awkward and unconvincing, though, and the sudden and intense romance in Mr. Mercedes was no exception.


He does that thing again that I both love and hate, where he

introduces characters and makes you invest in them, then kills them off and makes you start over with new characters. I don’t know if it’s intentional, but it puts me, the reader, on cautious footing with the new characters, feeling untrustful and not quite willing to commit. Until those new characters are in peril, and I find that I *am* invested in them, after all.

(show spoiler)


Audio version, borrowed from my local library via Overdrive. Will Patton’s narration is fantastic. He breathes life into the story and characters, and I loved how his vocal (oratory? Not sure of the proper word here) style changed, even when not voicing dialogue, for each section when the narrative switches between different characters’ stories. I could instantly tell when the story changed from following Brady, to following Hodges, to following Jerome, just by the change in voice. I might have finally found a new favorite reader of King’s stories, years after Frank Muller’s passing.