The Green Mile, Stephen KingI tried to comfort him. I don’t feel that I ever did, and part of my heart was glad he was suffering, you know, Felt he deserved to suffer. I even thought sometimes of calling the governor… and asking for a stay of execution. We shouldn’t burn him yet, I’d say. It’s still hurting him too much, biting into him too much, twisting in his guts like a nice sharp stick…. that John Coffey who was afraid of the dark perhaps with good reason, for in the dark might not two shapes with blonde curls – no longer little girls but avenging harpies – be waiting for him? That John Coffey whose eyes were always streaming tears, like blood from a wound that can never heal.

Memories of scaring myself witless as a teenager reading Stephen King novels were probably far more the reason why it has taken so long to get around to this than anything else. Those books were scary.

This one is not so scary. Not horrorbook scary, I mean. It is set on death row in a 1932 prison and features several descriptions of executions, including one truly horrific scene of an electrocution gone wrong. There is also a little bit of the supernatural in there. But it isn’t the kind of scary that is painted in such lurid detail that it haunts your dreams or makes you check under the bed before you turn out the light. Phew. (I have to read IT pretty soon, though, which will not be so easy…)

Oh, I nearly forgot a plot synopsis. The narrator is Paul Edgecombe, head warder on the death row block, who is an old old man telling about the time in 1932 when he oversaw the last of his 78 executions, the execution of John Coffey. Coffey is an enormously big and strong but docile and not-very-bright black man who was caught more or less red-handed with two twin girl-children. Dead, bloody, raped, white girl-children. But did he really do it? And, more to the point, can he be saved?

So it was OK. Not gripping. A bit blokey maybe. And, you know, just not quite enough naked teen bloody psycho murders committed by freaky zombies controlled by a pulsing alien superbrain.

Here is your Amazon link.
My copy was from the library.

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