Reading with Kat

Working Mother Book Blogger

I wasn’t going to write this review, because once again I am awed by famous books, famous novellists (The King!) and famous movies, which this book is all of those. But then I sat next to my colleague at lunch talking about the book, and she had never heard of it – the book or the movie. I could not have been more surprised. The movie – I thought everyone had seen it. I told her that the book was equally good, if not better, but she said, oh no I don’t read horror. So once again, if you’ve never heard of this book – it is not horror. Most of his books are horror, but this one is not. I would classify it as fantasy/mystery/crime and it is not scary, though it does have one disturbing scene, but nothing too offputting for those of you who do not like horror.

If you have never seen the movie or read the book, boy are you in for an enthralling tale, a real page-turner. The story is about a prison officer (Paul Edgecombe) who works on death row in the 1930s. In the book he is an old man writing the story of what happened in the 30s, so it jumps from him as an old man in a retirement home to the story in the 1930s. And what happens during these few years is a remarkable story. John Coffey (like the drink only spelt different) is an extremely large black man (6ft 8inches!), soft and sweet and described as slow. He is accused of murdering (and the R word) two young white little girls (sisters). The police find John Coffey with the two blonde girls dead in his arms as he cries “I couldn’t help it”. A pretty compelling scene, and of course he goes down for the murders and is sentenced to be executed by the electric chair (Old Sparkey). This is where he meets Paul Edgecomb “The Boss” of the Green Mile. But Paul begins to see that not everything is as it seems.

I cannot say much more because if you haven’t seen the movie then you should be surprised and delighted by the magical elements within this story. However, also be prepared to cry.

I was surprised to learn that when this book was released, back in 1996, Stephen King decided to do a Charles Dickens and released the book in instalments. What a great idea. I wish I had known about it then, I would have loved to have read the book in instalments, waiting anxiously for the next part of the book to be released to see what happens next, that’s what TV used to be, one episode at a time. Now with Netflix you tend to get an entire series in one go.

If you have seen the movie, I highly recommend you read the book, as it is pure brilliance.

Now onto Stephen King, this is the first novel of his that I have finished, I tried to read “It” but it freaked me out. However, I have watched many of his movies and loved them all – It (old and new versions), Misery, Pet Sematary (though I almost didn’t make it through that one, boy is it gory!) and The Stand TV series. I think I need to read more of his books because this one was amazing, maybe not horror though, unless I can make room in the freezer (aka Joey from Friends).

One thought on “Book Review: The Green Mile (Stephen King)

  1. Louise says:

    Great review! I would love to read more King. I started trying to read them all in order but have not got very far yet!

    Liked by 1 person

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