from my bookshelf: the shining by stephen king


jack torrence gets a job at a historic hotel as the off-season caretaker, where he plans to work on his writing and spend time with his son and wife. the more time the torrence family spends there, the more isolating and threatening the hotel begins to feel. jack’s son, danny, learns that he has a special gift, which forces him to experience this twisted story unfold in a way that his parents cannot fathom.


“The wind sighed through the trees, and the fallen leaves rattled up the deserted walks and around the hubcaps of parked cars. It was a faint and sorrowful sound, and the boy thought that he might be the only one in Boulder awake to hear it. The only human being, at least. There was no way of knowing what else might be out in the night, slinking hungrily through the shadows, watching and scenting the breeze.”

“And suddenly Danny had one of those flashes of understanding that frightened him most of all; it was like a sudden glimpse of some incomprehensible machine that might be safe or might be deadly dangerous. He was too young to know which. He was too young to understand.”

“It was as if the Overlook had swallowed them.”

“They watched until the car was out of sight, headed down the eastern slope. When it was gone, the three of them looked at each other for a silent, almost frightened moment. They were alone. Aspen leaves whirled and skittered in aimless packs across the lawn that was now neatly mowed and tended for no guest’s eyes. There was no one to see the autumn leaves steal across the grass but the three of them. It gave Jack a curious shrinking feeling, as if his like force had dwindled to a mere spark while the hotel and the grounds had suddenly doubled in size and become sinister, dwarfing them with sullen, inanimate power.”

“Somewhere in the midst of that thought, things began to break up and he drifted down into sleep. his last thought followed him down like a sounding bell: It seemed that he ‘might be able to find peace here. At last. If they would only let him.”

“In the Overlook all things had a sort of life. It was as if the whole place had been wound up with a silver key. The clock was running. The clock was running.”

“He knew the boy. They had shared each other the way good friends can’t even after forty years of it. He knew the boy and the boy knew him, because they each had a kind of searchlight in their heads, something they hadn’t asked for, something that had just been given.”