The MistStephen King

I first came across the novella “The Mist” as part of the Stephen King short stories collection Skeleton Crew. First published in a separate anthology called Dark Forces, and then reprinted in 1980 in Skeleton Crew, I didn’t really read more than ten or so pages before getting bored with it.  I was fifteen at the time, and still developing the patients it takes to really dig into reading like that.  Besides, that sucker took up a good 1/5 of the entire collection, there.  Doesn’t sound like much, but for a short story collection to a restless 15-year-old, the over 200 pages is a bit daunting.

Twenty seven years after Skeleton Crew was published, “The Mist” was opted into a movie, so the obvious move was to re-publish the story itself as a stand-alone book, re-tagged as a movie tie-in.  Death, taxes and repackaging, and all that.

The story of “The Mist” involves a thick, mysterious fog – a “mist”, if you will – creeps over a small Maine town, and brings forth extra-dimentional nightmarish creatures that begin decimating the citizens unlucky enough to be outside when hell is literally unleashed.  But the real horror lies inside the supermarket, where the people trapped inside may be safe from what”s outside, but not from themselves when they slowly begin loosing their hope and sanity.

Yeah, I saw this on the shelves of the local Wal-Mart as an impulse buy item, and figured why not, it should be an amusing read. And it was.  A nice straight-forward Giant Monster story, with the terror palpable and the monsters truly frightening as they’re not really described out in the open.  The imagery is very frightening, and the ending is left open and ambiguous.  Unlike the movie, which…well, let’s just say there’s a reason why I’ve taken this long to write up a review for that one.

Anyone looking for a good quick horror bite, check out this publication.  Though, I would still urge anyone to just get the entire Skeleton Crew collection.