Skeleton Crew: Strange Stories

Toy monkey refers to one of the stories in the book.
An unstoppable monkey

Skeleton Crew is a collection of 22 Stephen King short stories of varying lengths and varying degrees of weirdness.

The hefty volume rings all the bells King fans enjoy and adds a few notes about the creative process behind them.

King has a particularly good ear for children’s memories, which he demonstrates in “The Monkey,” a story about a toy that has the ability to kill, and “Gramma,” a story of an 11-year-old left to care for his senile grandmother when his mother must go to the hospital because his older brother has been injured at football practice.

My favorites stories from the collection are built around situations that would be unsettling even without any supernatural flounces, such as:

“Here There Be Tygers” in which a third grader has to go to the bathroom which is in the school basement, a very scary place.

“The Ballad of the Flexible Bullet,” in which a crazy writer feeds a creature called a fornit that lives in his typewriter and produces words for him: What else could explain them?

There may not be a story here for every reader’s taste, but there’s enough variety that most readers will find something intriguing.

Skeleton Crew by Stephen King
G.P. Putnam’s Sons. 1985. 512 p.
1985 bestseller #5; my grade: B+

©2019 Linda G. Aragoni

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Linda Aragoni

I make big ideas simple for learners. My program for turning teens and adults into competent writers is just eight sentences, 34 words.

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