End Of Watch
"But he won't allow it. He wants to hurt Hodges, he wants to
hurt the nigger lawnboy, he owes them, and this is the way to do it.
Nor is it just a matter of revenge. She's the first test subject who
was at the concert, and she's not like the others, who were easier to
control. But he is controlling her, all he needs is ten more seconds,
and now he sees what's coming for her. It's a truck. A big black one.
Hey, honey, Brady Hartsfield thinks. Your ride is here."
End Of Watch is a term used to describe a police officer's
retirement from duty. It has a profound and tender feel to it.
Stephen King could not have picked a more perfect title for the third
and final volume of his trilogy that started with Mr. Mercedes and
continued with Finders Keepers.
Bill Hodges, a retired police detective and hero of the two
first books, gets an unexpected call from his former partner, Pete
Huntley. Pete wants him and sidekick, Holly Gibney, to check out a
crime scene and give him input. It appears to be a murder-suicide.
Martine Stover, a victim of Brady Hartsfield, about whom you will hear
more, was a quadraplegic, living with her septegenarian caregiver
mother. Evidence indicates that the mother had put a mixture of
ground up pills and vodka into her daughter's feeding tube and then
used helium to dispatch herself.
Not all the evidence fits. A long term housekeeper, shocked to
receive the news, tells Bill and Holly that the women were happy and
optimistic. Martine even had plans for the future: taking an on line
computer class on accounting. There are also a strange gaming
console and the letter Z on a bathroom counter. Izzy, Pete's new
partner, however wants to close the case with the obvious conclusion.
"'One thing I believe we all can agree on,' Izzy says, "is that
Hartsfield's days of running people down, blowing people up, and
architecting suicides are behind him. So unless we've all stumbled
into a movie called Son of Brady, I suggest we exit the late Ms.
Ellerton's house and get on with our lives..."
Izzy's got reason to be cynical. Mr. Brady Hartsfield,
archvillain of Mr. Mercedes, has spent the past six years in a brain
injury clinic, mostly staring out a window. Most people would find it
hard to believe that a man who can't do the most basic self care could
be in any way involved in a crime.
Bill thinks the world is way underestimating Hartsfield. He's
heard rumors of objects in his room moving without being touched.
He's sure there is still a lot of evil going on in that seemingly
short circuited brain.
Bill is battling a fast moving cancer. But he and his friends
must discover his nemesis' diabolical plot and engage him in a battle
to the death. It's not like he can get anyone else to believe him,
let alone take over.
End Of Watch is Stephen King at his creepy best and a fine
conclusion to a spine chilling trilogy.
On the last page Stephen King has a message to his readers:
"One last thing. End of Watch is fiction, but the high rate of
suicides--both in the United States and in many other countries where
my books are read--is all too real. The National Suicide Prevention
Hotline number given in this book is also real. It's 1-800-273-TALK.
If you are feeling poopy (as Holly Gibney would say), give them a
call. Because things can get better, and if you give them a chance,
they usually do."
Amen to that!
On a personal note, Joey cat has immersed himself in second
kittenhood. This year for the first time in about a decade he
started going for the lower ornaments on the tree. He works one from
all angles until it falls on the floor and then tears all over
batting. Then he learned what happens when a 10 1/2 pound feline
tries to climb a Christmas tree. Hint: gravity was involved. He
wasn't hurt or scared. If anything he was annoyed that when I put the
tree back up I insisted on putting all his newly acquired toys back on
A great big shout out goes out to Joey and all the other creatures
great and small who fill our hearts with joy.
Sent from my iPod