About H.J. Ash

Reader, writer, and all around great gal.

Stephen King’s The Colorado Kid

TheColoradoKidHappy Birthday to Stephen King! In celebration of what should be a national holiday, I’m posting about the most recent of King’s works I’ve read. The Colorado Kid came out in 2007 and was part of the launch of the Hard Case Crime series, which features several other well-known crime writers in addition to King. While this book may not be strictly horror, it does have an eerie and unexplainable situation. It centers around a tale being told to a junior reporter, Stephanie, who is interning at the newspaper on Moose-Lookit Island off the coast of Maine. The senior reporters – Vince and Dave –  are telling her the tale as an example for things that have happened around town that are too complex to share with outsiders looking for stories for the larger newspapers.

The story centers on an unidentified body discovered on the beach several years ago by local teens. The particulars of who the “Colorado Kid” really was, what the autopsy of the body disclosed, and the investigative work that took place in order to attempt to solve the mystery make up the whole of the slim book, and serve to create an enticing and interesting situation. Fans of hard-boiled crime and mysteries, as well as those who simply love King’s characters and world-building, will likely enjoy this quick read. You can also preorder a nice boxset of all three titles that Stephen King did for Hard Case Crime here.

Stephen King fans may also recognize people and places that later turned up in the TV series Haven, which was based upon this book. The series lasted five seasons and takes King’s idea further and explores the supernatural aspects only hinted at within the text of the book.

King’s work is going through an adaptation surge right now with a variety of different works being made into series and movies. Netflix has several, such as Gerald’s Game, 1922, and In the Tall Grass. HBO Max has The Outsider and both the old and new versions of It. A new version of The Stand came out in the last year or so, and Apple TV+ put out Lisey’s Story as a miniseries. In the past few years we also saw the excellent Castle Rock, which adapted many of King’s themes in the two seasons that it ran. And, as this article from Rotten Tomatoes shows, there are still many, many adaptations on the way, something that I’m really excited about!

If you’re interested, you can check out some more of my King posts here:

New and Notable

As the haunting season grows near, we will be seeing a lot of new releases in the horror genre. Here are a few that you might find interesting:

Books

My Heart is a Chainsaw – This is the newest from Stephen Graham Jones. It sounds like it will be a combination of mystery and horror, with some slasher aspects to it. I am always impressed with this author’s work, and you can read my posts about a couple of his other books here: Mongrels and The Ones That Got Away.

Survive the Night – Riley Sager is one of my new favorites and his works always contain both thriller and horror elements. I’ve had this one on my list at the library for awhile now and am really looking forward to getting my hands on it! You can read my short review of one of his previous books here: Final Girls.

The Final Girl Support Group – Grady Hendrix is amazing at being able to blend dark humor into his horror works. This is his newest and I highly recommend him, so don’t be surprised if you see a review of it featured here in the near future. Also, be sure to check out his back catalog, including the wonderful Paperbacks from Hell.

Cunning Folk – Adam Nevill’s upcoming release is about the neighbors from hell. It releases October 25th – just in time for Halloween – but in the meantime you can check out some of his other works, such as the absolutely amazing The Ritual, which was also made into a movie. I think that Nevill is one of the best new folk horror writers out there!

TV Series

American Horror Story is back and it sounds like it will be a slightly different format this season with a split between two different storylines. I’ve watched the first few episodes and am loving it so far! It’s an FX series that is also available the next day on Hulu.

Shudder picked up Slasher for a new season. This show has always meant business, and this season is no different. So far there are lots of brutal kills with a masked slasher that is perfect for plague season. New episodes drop on Thursdays.

Movies

Candyman just released last week and I’m really looking forward to seeing what Nia DaCosta does with Clive Barker’s wonderful story.

Here are a few more that we have to look forward to:

Happy haunting everyone! I’ll be back in a couple weeks with a new review!