Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King

Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King

This is the novel that I finished reading today for my Third Tuesday Book Club meeting tomorrow (June 21st, 2016). I read it after being assured that it was not horror; indeed it is not, but is a tightly wound story about a retired police detective and a mass murderer. I very much enjoyed reading this book.

In April of 2009, early in the morning, in an economically depressed city in Northern Ohio, a group of a thousand or so people are waiting in line for a job fair at the City Centre when a stolen Mercedes-Benz SL 500, driven by a person unknown wearing a clown mask, approaches at high speed, aims right for the early-birds in line, and kills eight people and maims many more. The car speeds off, and is later found abandoned. One year later, the woman whose car was stolen and used in the crime has killed herself, and the lead detective on the case, Bill Hodges (now retired), is sitting at his house watching daytime TV and thinking dark thoughts about killing himself with his father’s gun. He gets a letter from the person who calls him or her self Mr. Mercedes, in which Mr. Mercedes taunts the cop, and invites him to chat with him (Mr. Mercedes) on a very secure social networking site called Debbie’s’ Blue Umbrella. Hodges decides to look at the case again, as he has nothing but free time. What follows is Hodge’s sub rosa investigation into the case; we also learn who Mr. Mercedes really is, why he sent the letter, why he is what he is, and his plans for future mayhem.

I very much enjoyed reading this book. It is the first book in a trilogy, with the second book being Finders Keepers; the third book, End of Watch, was just published this month. And I anticipate a good Third Tuesday Book Club meeting tomorrow evening to discuss the book.

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