December 8, 2015

Blockade Billy by Stephen King

Title:  Blockade Billy
Author:  Stephen King
Pages:  132
Genre:  Horror / Suspense
Publisher:  Scribner, 2010
"Bloh-KADE!  Bloh-KADE!  Bloh-KADE!"
Synopsis:  Even the most die-hard baseball fans don't know the true story of William "Blockade Billy" Blakely. He may have been the greatest player the game has ever seen, but today no one remembers his name. He was the first--and only--player to have his existence completely removed from the record books. Even his team is long forgotten, barely a footnote in the game's history.

Every effort was made to erase any evidence that William Blakely played professional baseball, and with good reason. Blockade Billy had a secret darker than any pill or injection that might cause a scandal in sports today. His secret was much, much worse ... and only Stephen King, the most gifted storyteller of our age, can reveal the truth to the world, once and for all.

Review:  There were two novellas in this book -- Blockade Billy and Morality.  Both were horrifying in their own way.

In Blockade Billy, you meet William Blakely, the player who will do anything to win.  Anything.  In Morality, you find a happily married couple who take on a priest's dying wish....after all, the money is good.  The price?  Higher than they imagine.

There are no monsters here.  Well, actually, there are.  They just happen to look just like you and me, perfectly human.

I loved Blockade Billy.  It was chilling and awful and showed the underbelly of baseball in all its glory.  It touched on mental illness, murder and greed.  As much as I didn't want to, I actually ended up liking poor Billy.  I don't think he could help what he was.  Morality wasn't as good, but still a pretty good read.  You knew, just knew, the story wasn't going to end well.  You just didn't see why until the sad, bitter end.

This one's a keeper.  It's small enough to not take up too much room on my shelves.  And I may want to revisit old Billy again.  I'd probably have given this book a solid 10 if Morality had been left out or been just a little better.

Rating:  9 / 10

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