Doctor Sleep Read-Along

Monday, September 30:  Kick-Off Discussion
Monday, October 7:  Discussion #1 (Chapter 1-6)
Monday, October 14:  Discussion #2 (Chapter 7-13)
Monday, October 21:  Wrap-up Discussion (Chapter 14-End)

Doctor Sleep Read-along: Chapters 1-6

Doctor Sleep picks up not long after the closing of The Shining.  For those who have recently read The Shining, do you think it proves to be helpful in diving into the sequel?  If you have not recently read The Shining, do you feel you are missing out on some of the details?

I have not recently read The Shining, although it has been one of my favorite books since I was a child.  It’s been quite awhile since I read it, but I still remember most of the story.  I feel the opening chapters of the book serve as a good reminder if the reader has read The Shining.  If not it would be helpful to read The Shining first.

Danny has now become Dan.  In Part One, we watch his transformations from learning to live with the horrors of The Overlook to succumbing to the drink (like his father) to his road to sobriety and earning the title of Doctor Sleep.  What do you think about the journey King has taken Dan on thus far?

Considering the childhood he had; his alcoholic father trying to kill Danny and his mother and dealing with his “Shine” ability, I’m not surprised that he became an alcoholic also.  King did a great job showing his struggling journey from hitting rock bottom and then pulling himself out of that life to what his life is now.

We are also introduced to the True Knot in this first section.  What do you think about this group?

The fact that King has written the True Knot as every day people driving around the country in RV’s is just creepy.  We don’t know all that they are capable of just yet and I think it’s going to get much worse with these people.

Overall, what do you think so far?  Have you completely fallen into the story?  Or, has it taken a bit longer to get back into the life of little Danny Torrance?
At first, the pace of the story is slow.  It’s building the history of Dan’s life and how we got to this point.  It’s completely necessary to the story, but at times it’s a little tedious and it took me longer to fall back into life of Danny Torrance.

Doctor Sleep Read-along: Chapters 7-13

(This discussion will contain spoilers through Chapter Thirteen of Doctor Sleep.)

In Part One, we get to know Abra mostly through her parents or other adults. In Part Two, we get to know her much better. What do you think of this extraordinary girl?

I agree Abra is an extraordinary girl.  She has very powerful abilities that she has not even fully tapped into yet, but on the other hand she has to act like a completely normal girl.  At times she totally shows her age and then she shows her amazing insight and maturity.  She is definitely my favorite character in Doctor Sleep.

Do you have any speculations on what the True Knot are? We know how they sustain themselves, and we’ve seen the way they die. They’re not, as Abra calls them, “ghostie people,” but they aren’t really human either.

Sick, sick, sick!  King calls the True Knot the “empty devils”.  This is definitely accurate.  They will never be done hunting people with the “Shine”, especially children.  King does a very good job in creating this villain.

Considering that Chapter Thirteen is one of the most intense in the book so far, did anyone actually stop reading here? Or could you not wait to race on ahead?

Well, first of all, since I had a rental copy of the book I couldn’t read this at a leisurely pace even if I had wanted to.  Having said that, it took me a few days to get through the first few chapters, but after this point I stayed up way too late reading.  I only had about 100 pages left and couldn’t stay awake any longer so I finished it the next morning.

Doctor Sleep Read-along: Chapters 14-End

Before we started reading, we asked if you had any expectations for Doctor Sleep.  Did you get what you were hoping for out of the book?

Having finished the book, do you think having read The Shining is important for enjoying this one?

I think reading The Shining would be important to really understand the background for Doctor Sleep.   Doctor Sleep could stand on it’s own as a story, but it just wouldn’t be the same without knowing Danny Torrance as a child.

In one word, one phrase, one sentence … describe Doctor Sleep.

Awesome!

Anything else you feel like discussing about the end of the book?  Or, about the book as a whole?

I was really surprised to find out that Dan and Abra were related.  I didn’t see that coming at all.  I loved seeing their relationship unfold throughout the book.

At first I was worried about the members that left the True Knot, but realized they will probably just die off considering they were sick when they left.

Overall, I enjoyed reading Doctor Sleep and would definitely recommend it.

Do you have any final thoughts about Doctor Sleep?  How about Stephen King in general?

Also check out these links for more discussions on the Doctor Sleep Read-Along.

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