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Page 3 Profile: Stephen King, American novelist

‘Here’s Johnny!’ So he’s back?

That’s right. The King of horror is returning to the central character from The Shining, 36 years after it was first published. The novel, Doctor Sleep, is expected to be every bit as terrifying as the 1977 original which inspired the Stanley Kubrick film.

So what’s it about?

It follows the life of a now middle-aged Danny Torrence, who was the five-year-old gifted with The Shining in the original novel. He then uses his abilities in his job as a care worker helping people move from one world to the next. Torrence comes across a tribe of paranormals that feed off the steam produced when children with the shining are tortured. He realises he must help 12-year-old girl Abra, who has the strongest shining he has ever seen, and chaos ensues.

Scary! King be pretty confident about it then?

Actually, the veteran author said he is “nervous” about Doctor Sleep being compared negatively to The Shining.  He believes people are harder to scare these days as we are “savvy” to the tricks used by writers and film makers. But, he does think the quality of his writing has improved since he wrote The Shining aged 28 and that this book is better than the original. So I guess we can presume he is quietly confident.

Why write a sequel now?

The 65-year-old said he has always been curious about what happened to the creepy child from the book. Torrence survived some scary stuff at the Hotel Overlook. He was never going to grow up to be boring.

When can I get my hands on it?

You can get your Stephen King fix on September 24. If you’re brave enough that is.

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