Book Review 84 // Gwendy's Button by Stephen King and Richard Chizmar

Something completely new for me a Stephen King novel. I'm stepping away from my normal reads to try something new. I fear this maybe a slippery road to even more books needing to be read.

Book Details

Title: Gwendy's Button

Author: Stephen King & Richard Chizmar

Publisher: Cemetery Dance Publications

Type: Hardback

Page Count: 171

Commercial Fluff: The little town of Castle Rock, Maine has witnessed some strange events and unusual visitors over the years, but there is one story that has never been told... until now.

There are three ways up to Castle View from the town of Castle Rock: Route 117, Pleasant Road, and the Suicide Stairs. Every day in the summer of 1974 twelve-year-old Gwendy Peterson has taken the stairs, which are held by strong (if time-rusted) iron bolts and zig-zag up the cliffside.

At the top of the stairs, Gwendy catches her breath and listens to the shouts of the kids on the playground. From a bit farther away comes the chink of an aluminum bat hitting a baseball as the Senior League kids practice for the Labor Day charity game.

One day, a stranger calls to Gwendy: "Hey, girl. Come on over here for a bit. We ought to palaver, you and me."

On a bench in the shade sits a man in black jeans, a black coat like for a suit, and a white shirt unbuttoned at the top. On his head is a small neat black hat. The time will come when Gwendy has nightmares about that hat...

Journey back to Castle Rock again in this chilling new novella by Stephen King, bestselling author of The Bazaar of Bad Dreams, and Richard Chizmar, award-winning author of A Long December. This book will be a Cemetery Dance Publications exclusive with no other editions currently planned anywhere in the world!


A little box, lots of buttons and now I am hooked! My first visit to Castle Rock and I devoured it, reading this short tale in one sitting. It was strange reading a new author to me and even stranger reading a tale almost set in the current timeline. It was very refreshing.

Gwendy is a classic twelve year old girl, slightly over weight and a bit of an outcast. After being bullied at school Gwendy decides to spend the summer running up and down a set of stairs called Suicide Stairs. One day as she reaches the peak of the stairs see is confronted by a black suited stranger, who offers her the weirdest gift ever. A little wooden box covered in buttons with two levers. A weird magic box that every day gives a one of a kind chocolate, but what do the buttons do and why are they themed to different continents? Why do you feel something terrible is going to happen, is it all just in her head? What happens if she or someone else pushes a button. Why am I so stressed....

Great little read that I had to finish in one sitting. It was interesting seeing how the girl grew and dealt with the box issue. It felt like a story of what if's, what if she didn't take the box, what if she hadn't stopped taking the chocolate, what if she had stayed friends with Olive? I can't believe I waited so long to try a Stephen King book. I am definitely finding more to try out. Please give me some suggestions to try out below. As always thank you for reading and I believe my next review will be Tales of Heresy.

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