“Lisey’s Story” tells the tale of Lisey Landon who lost her husband Scott two years ago. Scott was a famous author, and Lisey is in the process of attempting to clean out his study.
Published in 2006, this 509-page novel received relatively good reviews, with some negative ones, as all novels will. I personally loved it. It was fantastic. Paced well, tender, honest, imaginative, and emotional.
Stephen King said this is one of his personal favorites. He said he came up with the idea when he returned home from the hospital following a fight with pneumonia and saw his wife was redecorating his writing studio and had a lot of his things in boxes. This sight gave him the thought, “this is what it will be like when I die.”
This is a very sad novel. We as constant readers relive Lisey’s time with Scott. King intertwines Lisey’s memories and flashbacks of specific events with her husband and her present efforts to finally finish the grieving process.
King seamlessly weaves the past and the present, showing us Lisey’s heartbreak, but also showing us her strength. I cried a couple times, was shocked quite a few times, and even caught myself with a goofy smile on my face a couple times.
I said it was sad, but “Lisey’s Story” is heartwarming, shocking and has its scary bits too.
Below I am going to go into a bit of a spoilery review, so if you haven’t read yet, I highly recommend you do and you can continue reading this review, it won’t ruin the book, but it may not surprise you as much when you do read it.
If you have read, please, continue reading this review. If you haven’t, continue if you want, and whether you stay or go, make sure you read this vivid and amazing story.
This may be one of King’s most imaginative books to date.
King introduces us to Boo’ya Moon, another world, adjacent to ours, that Scott discovered when he was a child.
Scott grew up with his older brother Paul and their insane father. Scott adored his older brother, but his father would torture the poor boys. To escape and recuperate, Scott would take his brother to Boo’ya Moon, a world adjacent to ours. A world where you are not safe at night.
King’s vivid descriptions of Boo’ya Moon are absolutely incredible. The flowers, the tall grass, the trees, the pool, the laughers, and of course, Scott’s creepy “long boy.” (I won’t go any further into details)
While cleaning out Scott’s study, Lisey often hears the voice of her late husband and his terms of endearment, “Baby. Babyluv.” Hearing his voice and his other quirky sayings trigger the flashbacks.
One day, Lisey receives a call from John Dooley. Dooley wants her to give Scott’s unpublished work to a professor at Pitt. Dooley threatens Lisey with her life if she does not cooperate.
Dooley shows up at Lisey’s home one night and maims her as a warning. Once he is gone, she travels to Boo’ya Moon and takes a dip in the pool, healing her wounds.
Once healed, Lisey returns to this world and visits her catatonic sister Amanda. She travels back to Boo’ya Moon and brings her sisters conscious back to the real world, waking her up. Together, Amanda and Lisey confront Dooley and bring him to Boo’ya Moon where he meets Scott’s long boy.
This novel is truly fantastic. The writing is flawless, the pace is perfect. There are some creepy bits, some beautiful bits and some heartbreaking bits.
Overall this novel is intricate and complex, but not hard to understand, and it will blow you away. I highly recommend you check it out.