Like a lot of his nastier fiction characters, Stephen King’s pursuit of crime and thriller fiction perfection knows no bounds and in his latest novel, Joyland, he turns his attention to the life of carnies. As well as travelling back to 1973 to set the story, King has also gone back to the old ways of publishing, releasing the book as a paperback without the option to download it as an ebook.
According to King, “I loved the paperbacks I grew up with as a kid, and for that reason, we’re going to hold off on e-publishing this one for the time being. Joyland will be coming out in paperback, and folks who want to read it will have to buy the actual book.”
The story sees main character, Devin Jones, take on a job at an amusement park carnival during college break to earn money during the summer. However, as you’d expect with a Stephen King thriller, things aren’t as fun loving as you might expect. The aftermath of a previous brutal murder still haunts the amusement park, but there’s also the more pressing disturbance of a child that is dying in the carnie family, which draws Devin into the unconventional lives of the carnival.
Set for release on the 4th June 2013, Stephen King’s Joyland paperback sounds like it’s going to be another gripping read from one of the best loved thriller writers. Bringing in a cool new backdrop of an old American amusement park and taking us back to the early seventies, the story is interwoven around a solid concept that’s fresh and new, despite it’s dilapidated and flare enshrouded surroundings.
Published by Hard Case Crime, which sets out to revive the storytelling and visual style of the pulp paperback classics of the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, Joyland was first released on hardback in April 2012. The paperback release has clearly been tied in heavily with the ethos of the publishing house with a focus on the physical production instead of digital download sales.
Stephen King will be following up the release of Joyland with his sequel to The Shining, which is due out in September. Entitled, Dr Sleep, it continues with Danny Torrence as a 40 year old orderly in New York, so the anticipation is pretty high for an impressive return to the Shining storyline.