I’m slowly dipping my toes into Stephen King’s works. Last year I tried his dystopian novel «Cell» and this year I decided to start with one of the shorter books – «Elevation». I’m still avoiding his horror books, even though «Elevation» is classified as Horror and even won Goodreads awards in the horror category (shocking!) you’re safe to read it because it’s nothing more than a Fiction book with elements of fantasy? sci-fi? something out of the ordinary.
This was an outstanding story and it instantly made it to my “favorites of 2020” list!
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.
There are some books that we tend to forget after a couple of months, maybe years. And then there are others that will stay with us our entire life. For me, that happened with «The Da Vinci Code», «Memoirs of Geisha» and now also with «Elevation». Of course, I only now finished it and it’s still fresh in my memory, but I’m sure this is the book I will reference multiple times in the future, looking back at the moment when I first read it wishing to experience it all over again.
WHAT I LIKED:
1 – Stephen King is a master storyteller. Anything he comes up with, any idea that pops in his mind, he has the ability to present it to his readers in the most captivating way. Yes, I know I’ve only read two of his books, but both of them grabbed my attention from the beginning and didn’t let go until the last word.
We meet Scott Carey on the very first page when he knocks on the door of the retired physician saying: “… I have a problem. I hope not a big one, but it might be”. That was the exact point, only two paragraphs in when I got immersed in the story, not wishing to put it down until I knew how it ended.
2 – I think everyone knows what this book is about, and if you read the blurb you will know the entire plot. But that’s not a bad thing, because «Elevation» is not supposed to surprise you with clever plot twists. Instead, it’s a character study and a “community study”, with fantastical elements giving a little push in the right direction.
3 – After finishing the book, I was surprised to see a rather low rating on Goodreads and decided to peruse some of the reviews. Maybe I’m not a sensitive reader, but I haven’t noticed any of the “negative things” highlighted by the bookish community.
Many reviews mentioned (1) too many political views, (2) stereotypical elements like a lesbian couple with one “tougher” partner, or (3) white male coming to aid the lesbian couple. And I can’t understand why would this be a problem?
Yes, the book has some political comments, which is totally normal in the political society that we live in right now. But the other elements felt absolutely natural to me. All people are different, there are many couples, of same or different genders, where one of the partners is quieter than the other. All because we are so different from each other!
Besides, why would you view the wish to help that came from Scott any less deserving just because he is a white male? Why not look at it as an act of kindness and desire to help another human being?
Maybe I’m not a sensitive reader when it comes to these things, or maybe I want to see the best in people and characters instead of trying to twist their acts and words. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ All I know is that this book was very well written, with an interesting plot and engaging relationships that fit in mere 146 pages!
I would love to hear your opinions on this book? Have you read it? Is it on your TBR?
Let me know in the comments below!