Kirkus Reviews QR Code
THE SHINING by Stephen King

THE SHINING

By Stephen King

Pub Date: Jan. 28th, 1976
ISBN: 0385121679
Publisher: Doubleday

A presold prefab blockbuster, what with King's Carrie hitting the moviehouses, Salem's Lot being lensed, The Shining itself sold to Warner Bros. and tapped as a Literary Guild full selection, NAL paperback, etc. (enough activity to demand an afterlife to consummate it all). The setting is The Overlook, a palatial resort on a Colorado mountain top, snowbound and closed down for the long, long winter. Jack Torrance, a booze-fighting English teacher with a history of violence, is hired as caretaker and, hoping to finish a five-act tragedy he's writing, brings his wife Wendy and small son Danny to the howling loneliness of the half-alive and mad palazzo. The Overlook has a gruesome past, scenes from which start popping into the present in various suites and the ballroom. At first only Danny, gifted with second sight (he's a "shiner"), can see them; then the whole family is being zapped by satanic forces. The reader needs no supersight to glimpse where the story's going as King's formula builds to a hotel reeling with horrors during Poesque New Year's Eve revelry and confetti outta nowhere. . . . Back-prickling indeed despite the reader's unwillingness at being mercilessly manipulated.