If you would have told me at any point in my reading career that I would be eagerly anticipating the new Stephen King novel I would have made a face and told you I doubted it. King fans are a little obnoxious. We all know that person who ONLY READS STEPHEN KING BOOKS or you ask in small talk what they like to read and the response is OMG STEPHEN KING. I avoided his work, in no small part because of these people, until I met my husband. He told me I really did need to read The Shinning. He was right. He told me I would like The Dark Tower Series. I only got two books into that series, as I felt Mr. King "pulled a Heroes" and refused to read any further, but I enjoyed what I read. I am half way through Salems Lot and have been for two years now. After these experiences I did not go out of my way to seek out the latest and greatest Stephen King novel.
Then came Doctor Sleep, the sequel to The Shinning. The Shinning was amazing so I had to read Doctor Sleep right? As you can probably tell from my review, I loved it. In Stephen King fandom style LOVED IT.
When I came across a review for Mr. Mercedes it really struck a chord. What I enjoyed so much about Doctor Sleep was the deep character profile. Mr. Mercedes was promising similar. Purely on how much I enjoyed I Doctor Sleep I also Pre ordered Mr. King's November release revival. Do I sound like a crazy Stephen King fan yet?
I started reading Mr. Mercedes the morning of 6/7/2014. I finished reading it at 1 o clock in the morning 6/8/2014. Like Doctor Sleep, Mr. Mercedes has two voices, the good guy and the bad guy. This is usually a warning sign for me that I am going to have to plod through a second and inferior narrator to read the really good parts of the book. Not so with Mr. Mercedes. I never once thought " I wonder what the other guy is doing right now." It's not that I didn't care, both voices simply sucked me into their world. The transitions were seamless and I gladly rolled into whatever narrative was being offered.
The glimpse into the workings of someone else's mind is what drew me into Doctor Sleep and what made me buy Mr.Mercedes. Mr. Mercedes did not disappoint. I understood the psychopath, and I understood the retired cop ( Det Ret). I compulsively read the psychopaths part in the story to get a better look at his dysfunction and his thinking. I was happy to read the Det Ret story to work on the puzzles and solve the mystery with him.
This book had one drawback for me. For as messy and dysfunctional as the story was willing to get, the ending was a pretty package with a bow on top. I had a hard time believing the nature of the story I just read could end so pleasantly. I seem to like messy endings better as an adult. I know things don't always end well and they shouldn't in book either. While the characters in Mr. Mercedes deserved the ending they got ( maybe better) the end of the book did not fit with the tone of the rest of it. That was disappointing.
Before I picked a star rating on this I looked back at my Doctor Sleep review. Doctor Sleep was more compelling, but it also had larger flaws. I still gave it 5 stars for the experience that reading it is.
Mr. Mercedes get's 4 and 1/2. And I reserve the right to sleep on it.