Book Review: The Outsider

The Outsider by Stephen King book review
When an eleven-year-old boy is found murdered in a town park, reliable eyewitnesses undeniably point to the town's popular Little League coach, Terry Maitland, as the culprit. DNA evidence and fingerprints confirm the crime was committed by this well-loved family man.

Horrified by the brutal killing, Detective Ralph Anderson, whose own son was once coached by Maitland, orders the suspect to be arrested in a public spectacle. But Maitland has an alibi. And further research confirms he was indeed out of town that day. 

As Anderson and the District Attorney trace the clues, the investigation expands from Ohio to Texas. And as horrifying answers begin to emerge, so King's propulsive story of almost unbearable suspense kicks into high gear.

Terry Maitland seems like a nice guy but there is one rock-hard fact, as unassailable as gravity: a man cannot be in two places at the same time. Can he? 

The blurb for Stephen King's new book grabbed me instantly and what lured me in further was the promise that his latest novel had gone back to the good old days of King novels. I couldn't wait to try it for myself, desperately hoping it lived up to my expectations. It's quite a lot lengthier than most of the books I've been reading of late (standing at 577 pages) and I'm quite a slow reader, but I sped through this unable to put it down.

On the surface what we have with this novel is a crime story, a young boy is murdered and several witnesses all point the finger and the well-loved baseball coach, evidence matches the witnesses testimonies but there's one problem, Terry Maitland swears he wasn't even in town when the murder happened and he's got people who can back him up, what's more there's video evidence that Maitland was out of town. So who or what posed as Maitland, matched his DNA and killed a young boy?

Underneath all that though is some good old Stephen King weirdness and a supernatural element. I'm not talking weirdness to the point of being ridiculous though, I'm talking, gripping, suspense-filled horror that has you thinking we don't really know what's out there!  

I couldn't put this book down, every element of it pleased me way more than I could have expected and I can highly recommend giving this a go. If your a fan of older Stephen King novels but couldn't really get on board with some of his newer offerings than this book is definitely for you. It won't disappoint. 

Rating: ★★

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