I am not necessarily a fan of Stephen King. I think of his writing style as science fiction or horror, two genres that don’t really appeal to me. In the past I have read and enjoyed a few of his books and remember particularily liking “the Stand.”
I am very influnced by my friends and family who read and so when my aunt Terry, who is a huge fan of King, recommended I read his most recent novel I agreed.
I later realized it was 849 pages! But I really love Auntie Terry and so I committed.
I am glad I did.
While it was a very long book it had a very interesting plot about a time traveler who attempts to prevent the assassination of JFK which happened in Dallas on 11/22/63.
It is told in the first person by our hero, Jake Epping, a divorced high school English teacher. Jake is tipped off by his friend Al about a “rabbit hole” that takes you back in time. But here’s the catch: it always takes you back to the same date 9/9/1958 at 11:58 am. Oh, and when you return through that same rabbit hole the time in the present has only passed by 2 minutes, no matter how long you stayed in the past.
Jake makes a few attempts down the rabbit hole to test what happens and to see if his attempts to change the past really end up having happy endings. During his longest time in the past he ends up falling in love with the librarian at his school. It is during this time he also finds out that there are some “butterfly effects” of his time traveling and begins to understand that the past doesn’t really WANT to be changed.
King did an amazing amount of research on JFK, Lee Harvey Oswald and the circumstances around the death of JFK. At times it gets to be too detailed but I found it held my interest. I was also very interested in his portrayal of life in the late 50’s and early 60’s. I realized how much life has changed not only by technology but by the progressive views of society.
This book is part sci fi and part historical fiction and King thought this novel may be a chance for him to gain some new readers. It worked for me. Thank you Aunt Terry. I am glad I invested the time in this long but interesting book.