09 June 2016

Review: The Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen King

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams is a collection of short stories by Stephen King. I enjoyed his previous collections Just After Sunset and Full Dark, No Stars so when I saw his latest collection in the library on my cruise last month, it was a no-brainer.

Each story has an introduction from King telling the reader what inspired the story or how it came about. Themes include: guilt, mental health, the afterlife, morality, humanity, pain management, old age, marriage and death, with many stories provoking deeper thought and rumination. I was moved and entertained throughout, with the exception of about three stories.

My favourite of the collection was Drunken Fireworks, a story of a Fourth of July Arms Race between two families on a lake. One family is wealthy and one isn't, but what transpires as they compete between themselves for the best fireworks each Fourth of July is hilarious.

Other highlights included, The Dune, Bad Little Kid and ObitsThe collection also contains UR, a short story only released in e-book format several years ago. I reviewed it here in the beginning of 2013, so decided not to re-read it this time.

Containing twenty short stories in total, The Bazaar of Bad Dreams is a great introduction to the work of Stephen King, and an enjoyable read for established fans.

My rating = ****

Carpe Librum!

P.S. The library copy onboard the Carnival Legend had this cover below, while the library copy back home in Melbourne had the cover above. Which do you like the best?

Would you like to comment?

  1. Neither! But then King covers are notoriously awful in my opinion. I'm not sure if the publishers know how to market him still after all this time. One cover is tied to his horror genre and one to his bizarre. Although to be frank the lighter cover just doesn't work on any level!!

    (Sorry! Could be a little PMS-y - I seem to have extreme opinions on everything today :-/ )

  2. I agree with you in principle Brona, some of the King's cover designs don't appeal to me either, but on this one I was torn 50/50 I think.


Thanks for your comment, Carpe Librum!