The Outsider by Stephen King

I haven’t read much Stephen King, but whenever I do, I think I really ought to read more. He is a phenomenal writer with an incredible imagination and I can’t think of anyone quite like him. So when I saw The Outsider for only £3.99 in Sainsbury’s, I thought I would give it a read.

There’s no beating about the bush with this story. It goes straight in with a horrific crime. A string of eyewitnesses have seen a popular local man with the victim and forensic evidence proves he was to blame. So despite his previous impeccable record, the police set out to arrest him. And as the crime has shocked the town, they choose to do it in the most public way possible.

But the suspect turns out to have a cast-iron alibi, with witnesses to prove he was actually 70 miles away at the time of the crime. Could he really have slipped away unnoticed, committed murder and then returned?

Detective Ralph Anderson sets out to investigate. Could he and his team have made a catastrophic mistake and arrested the wrong man?

That might sound like I’ve given you a whole load of spoilers there, but this book really does get straight down to business. If that is the crux of the story, I found myself wondering how Stephen King was going to fill the remaining 400 pages with the investigation? But of course there is far more to the story than meets the eye and plenty of twists and turns along the way.

This isn’t a conventional thriller and the horrific nature of the crime means it isn’t for the faint-hearted. But it is an entertaining read with plenty of likeable and believable characters. If you enjoy a crime novel with a twist, you will enjoy The Outsider.

Although a stand-alone story, I discovered that my favourite character, private investigator Holly, actually appears in a trilogy of Stephen King stories, so I will be reading those later in the year.

The Outsider, Book review, Stephen King, The Outsider by Stephen King

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Author: Sarah Mummy

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12 Comments

  1. I read a lot of Stephen King when I was younger but I haven’t read any of his books for a while. This sounds really intriguing and I don’t think there are spoilers, you’ve really made me want to go out and buy it 🙂

    #ReadWithMe

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    • I’m sure you would enjoy it! And you definitely need to read his 11.22.63, which is one of my favourite books ever!

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  2. I have never read this author but your review might just persuade me to try. My late dad was a policeman. He told the tale often of a respected colleague who said he could give an alibi for someone accused of murder. The accused was hung and apparently that police office never got over it still convinced he had seen the perpetrator a mile or two away at the time of the murder #ReadWithMe

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    • What an awful experience for your dad’s colleague to go through. That is definitely the sort of guilt you would live with for the rest of your life.
      I always thought Stephen King only wrote horror books, and maybe he did 20 or 30 years ago, but I have found his books to be so much more than that.

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  3. I’ve never got into Stephen King, my mum on the other hand absolutely adores his books. #readwithme

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    • I never expected to enjoy them myself, because I’d always assumed he only wrote horror (which I don’t like), but I have enjoyed all of his books that I’ve read.

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    • I think the earlier ones are scary, but he has moved away from horror in recent years. I definitely intend to read more of his books because I really like his style of writing.

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  4. Aside from On Writing, I’ve only ever read one classic Stephen King novel – Misery. It had me gripped but gave me nightmares so I’m not convinced I’m cut out for horror! This sounds like a great read though #readwithme

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    • On Writing was the first Stephen King I read and it was so interesting! I’m not into horror books either, luckily Stephen King doesn’t just write horror these days.

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  5. I’ve been a Stephen King fan since my teens and I think I’m only missing a couple of books from my collection. I really enjoyed The Outsider. I can’t wait to read The Institute which is released in September, I think.

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    • That’s impressive that you’ve read nearly all of them! I need to go back and read a few more.

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