Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Review for The Long Walk by Stephen King

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The Long Walk
by Stephen King (written as Richard Bachman)

Published: January 1999
Pages: 384
Rating: 5/5

Finally available in a single volume edition under Stephen King's name! In the near future, a young boy has been one of 100 selected to take the Long Walk--a deadly contest of endurance and determination, in which each step can literally be your last. Follow the contestants' tortured footsteps as they struggle with each other, and themselves, to survive the race. Includes the Introduction "The Importance of Being Bachman". Vintage King, this harrowing tale was originally published under the Richard Bachman pseudonym.


I read this book about 5 years ago and since then, I would occasionally think about it in passing. I saw it at the library and I had to check it out and re-read it.

The simplicity of this story just adds to the horror of it all. A young teenage boy is chosen as one out of 100 to compete in the Long Walk. The contestants have to walk until only one is still standing. No breaks, three warnings before they "buy a ticket", and they have to keep up a 4 mph, or better, pace.

After the third warning, the contestant is shot. Therefore, there is much more than the Prize on the line. The Prize is everything you want for the rest of your life. Enough to entice these young men to risk the chance of dying.

I'm going to count this as my futuristic thriller in the 08/09 Suspense & Thriller Challenge.

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