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Peggy Farooqi
Mum of 3 (1994, 1995, 1998)- born in East Germany --lived in UK/ Kent since 1993 -- studied criminology -- love reading / writing / travelling / needlecraft 
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19 March 2014


Title
Four Past Midnight
Author
Stephen King
Publisher
Hodder & Stoughton Ltd
First Published
1990
Pages
930
Genre
fiction, science fiction, 

This Stephen King book is a collection of 4 novellas. Each of them can stand on their own as a book (so not short stories!) Each of the stories look at the concept of time - in the unique King way of course!


1. The Langoliers


I don't think this story is recognised enough - it is in fact one of my favourite Stephen King stories. 

Now I'm not a very nervous flyer, but lets just say I always breathe I sigh of relief when we touch down. Now imagine this:
Brian, an ex-pilot, is on a plane travelling from Los Angeles to Boston overnight. He falls asleep.When he awakes, he finds that, apart from 9 other fellow passengers, all the other passengers have simply vanished, and that includes the crew. The plane continues to fly on autopilot. They all quickly figure out that they all have been asleep when 'something' must have happened to the plane which they think is a 'time rip'. In usual King fashion, we have a range of different characters who have to pull together. Lovely memorable types who will stay in your memory including the blind girl Dinah and Craig Toomey, the investment banker who will go bad (long before investment bankers went bad in movies / news) 
My absolute favourite read of this collection of stories. Brilliant idea beautifully executed.

2. Secret Window, Secret Garden


Every writer's nightmare?
Mort is a successful writer. One day a man knocks on Mort's door who calls himself John Shooter and claims that Mort has stolen his story and leaves him a manuscript. Mort is horrified at the accusation of plagiarism and dismisses it, but eventually looks at the manuscript and finds it almost identical to one of the stories he has written. But it looks like his story was published 2 years before Shooters story. now he just needs to prove it. But sinister things start to happen. 
Johnny Depp plays Mort in the movie-version :) 
I loved this story as well, especially when 'it' dawned on me what's happening here. 


3. The Library Policeman


Ever forget to return a book to the library in good time… 
Sam, a middle-aged man,  has to make a speech and goes to the public library to check out a few books on the topic. He starts chatting to the librarian - they are usually friendly folks, aren't they? He gets reminded not to forget to return the books in time, or else? What follows is a ghost-kind of story involving unpleasant things happening at this library. And I mean truly unpleasant.
This was my least favourite story of this collection. Despite the horror/ghost content, there is also has a serious topic (sexual abuse)


4. The Sun Dog

Kevin gets a Polaroid Camera (remember them?) for his 15th birthday . But whatever he aims the camera at, the only pictures it produces is that of a large and menacing dog. And even more uncomfortable is that the dog is getting closer and closer with every picture Kevin takes, as if to break out of the camera. Kevin manages to give the camera to a local second-hand shop owner who promised to get rid of it, but of course doesn't as he smells a business opportunity.
A few 'old' favourites in this story - the story is set in the fictional town Castle Rock, Maine as so many of King's story and the second hand shop owner is Pop Merrill.



This collection is a must for any King Fan. You won't be disappointed.