Mr. Mercedes - Stephen King

Retired Detective Bill Hodges is being terrorized by Brady Hartfield who happened to murder some 8 innocent people at the wheel of a stolen Mercedes. He was never apprehended and in this cat and mouse thriller makes every waking day a nightmare for RD Hodges. The problem I have with this story is the style is a departure from the usual Stephen King brilliance. It is told almost as a homage to the "detective" genre...you know the idea lonely retired overweight cop, all the women in his life have departed and there is only our hero sitting alone at night contemplating a lonely future with his service revolver for company. So it could be argued that when Hartfield returns to haunt BH he is actually saving the former detective's sanity. There is certainly a lot of tension between the two and the characterization is par excellence (I would expect no less from King) Brady Hartfield, not surprisingly, is a loner with severe sexual backwardness not helped by a drunken and rather "over familiar" mother. As the story proceeds Hodges regains some of his former sparkle helped by the attractive Janey Patterson, Janey's cousin Holly and the young energetic computer whizz Jerome Robinson.

 

The style of the story is somewhat satirical and mocking and therefore the events that unfold cannot be taken seriously. This is obviously the intention of the author but I found that it became a little fatiguing and wearying indeed the conclusion was somewhat comical and not quite what I was hoping for or expected. You, of course, may choose to differ, this is certainly not a bad story and although not to my liking SK is without a doubt one of the greatest writers of the last 40+ years.