The Outsider is the first Stephen King novel that I have read. Therefore, I do not know if it is one of his best or not. It certainly did not inspire me to run out and gobble up any of his other books. I was intrigued by the premise of a crime thriller merged with the supernatural, but at 560 pages this was a definite slog. King is so immensely popular and successful, I guess no editor would dare suggest paring back some of the backstories or repetition of plot points.

Even the creep-out scenes for me were ho-hum and not particularly clever or cringe-inducing. A boogieman under the bed --oh my! I know King has millions of fans, but I found his writing style to be prosaic and clunky at times. In what is supposed to be one of the most tense scenes in the novel, a life or death situation, the two characters are bantering movie trivia about "Rebel Without a Cause." Really? Talk about breaking the spell. I know I am in the minority, but this massive tome was disappointing.

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