Here's the thing about Stephen King a lot of people don't get. At the center of most—not all, but most—of his books is a gushing, bleeding heart that believes in the decency of humans and their capaci...
ty to love. Admittedly, this is usually buried under supernatural terror, gore, and depravity. But it’s there. And, with some notable exceptions, even King’s darkest stories seem to believe that good eventually wins.
Elevation puts that bleeding heart front and center. It’s a parable in response to our divided, Trumpian times. It’s a call for unity, understanding, and neighborly kindness. Anyone who follows King on Twitter knows his feelings about Trump and associated Republicans (he doesn’t like them), and the themes in Elevation are no mystery. It’s unsubtle, kind of mushy, a little weird, and utterly charming.
Beyond politics, Elevation is simply about taking a step back, enjoying your surroundings, and appreciating the life you have. Even if you, like protagonist Scott Carey, have a strange weight loss affliction that doesn’t change your physical appearance and could possibly end with you floating off into the atmosphere like a party balloon.
I love a door stopping Stephen King novel as much as the next Constant Reader, but he also slays within this novella/short novel length. Elevation is hopefully another showcase of how King transcends his genre trappings. He's never shied away from the world's many horrors, but I still think it's unfair to pigeonhole King as a horror writer. For further evidence, see "Laurie," the bonus short story with this book.
145 short pages: that's all Stephen King needed to create characters that feel real: Scott, DeeDee, Missy and Bob (not a surprise: one of King's talents since Carrie), a curious mystery (Scott is losing weight...but his body is exactly the same as always), and an epic redemption moment that changes everything (and I won't say here which since it's a spoiler).
A heartwarming story about how a kind act can change and elevate a person, a family and a whole community. An unforgettable return to Castle Rock, one of those towns we're so glad to stop by every now and then, and one we can never have enough stories from.