Picks and Pans Review: Between the Covers
How does Stephen King's newest novel stack up against the just-published manuscript he wrote under his pseudonym Richard Bachman? Comparisons:
TITLE The Regulators ($24.95) Desperation ($27.95)
AUTHOR Richard Bachman Stephen King
PAGES 474 pages (slender by King standards) 690 pages (still underfed for a King opus)
PREMISE Murderous, mysterious creatures dressed as characters from a kids' cartoon attack a small Ohio town A 300-pound cop presides over the speed trap from hell outside a Nevada desert town.
MAIN CHARACTERS A cluster of terrified citizens, plus a possessed little boy Many of the same characters, apparently unaware that they surfaced in the other story
CELEBRITY NAMES DROPPED Ethan Hawke, Newt Gingrich, James Dickey Bonnie Raitt, the Grateful Dead, Norman Mailer, James Dickey again
DUMBEST QUOTE "The boy...is maybe six and is...already on his way to being a first-class boogersnot." "Dear me," he said, "I've lost the respect of a man once in charge of throwing out Steve Tyler's barf-bags."
BEST TIME/PLACE TO READ IT NOT before bed, unless you're courting nightmares. But do find time. NOT before a motor trip, but no need to rush; it's a routine King monster mash.