Stephen King * Thinner

thinner_int1Thinner is about a fat man who is cursed by a gypsy and loses weight. If that’s all there was to it I’m sure we’d all be running out to find ourselves a Romany, but that’s not how curses work. Billy Halleck, the fat man, can’t stop losing weight and it’s going to kill him.

“Some guys– a lot of guys—don’t believe what they are seeing, especially if it gets in the way of what they eat or drink or think or believe. Me, I don’t believe in God. But if I saw him, I would. I wouldn’t just go around saying ‘Jesus, that was a great special effect.’ The definition of an asshole is a guy who doesn’t believe what he’s seeing. And you can quote me.”

Plagued by his own guilt over accidentally killing a gypsy woman he becomes convinced that the only way to survive is to convince the gypsy man to reverse the curse that he has set upon him. It ends with a twist that we can see coming, but are unable to prevent (or even turn away from)..

“But it’s hard for a man to give up all his pleasures, even when they don’t pleasure him no more.”

thinnercurseI liked this book for the issues that it raised; the flirtation with cancer and mental instability, along with the outright confrontation with racism in America, were both interesting and thought provoking. It made me wonder if there were any other King books dealing with gypsies (other than Doctor Sleep) because although I liked this book it didn’t seem as though King had finished with the subject matter.

“You were starting to sound a little like a Stephen King novel for a while there,”


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