As I move on into the book, I encounter yet more evidence that every single man or boy in Dooling is just…awful. So, as we saw earlier, Old Essie has fallen prey to the Aurora Disease. Eventually, a group of boys from Dooling High School come across her in her lean-to. They proceed to harass and disturb her. One of them even says that he’s going to urinate in her ear. Now, Jared is there, and presumably is going to be the good guy in this scenario. Does he run out and stop these people from doing what he knows is wrong? No, he decides to sit idly by and record them. Now, does he record them so that there is evidence of their wrongdoing so he can make sure justice is served? No, he mainly wants to prove a point to a girl he wants to date. Once again…are there no good men in Dooling?
Not only that, Jerod’s mindset seems to fall into that mindset in which he’s such a “nice guy” and he can’t stand that Mary doesn’t want to date a “nice guy” like him. It’s clearly not the way that the Kings see Jerod. It’s a bit refreshing, and I wonder if any men that think that way in real life would get a bit of a reality check from reading Jerod’s part of the book. Now, I’m going to be skipping around a lot because the perspective changes around a lot. It really does make sense in the book itself, it helps keep the timeline consistant as events unfold. But it does make it a little difficult to talk about. I tried my best to set my section markers in logical places, but talking about the timeline of a Stephen King book is certainly an interesting task.
Anyway, while Jerod is dealing with his teenage rivals, his father is dealing with the situation in the women’s prison. He does his intake for Evie, who we now see has some sort of power. Either that or some very lucid dreams. Now, there hasn’t been time so far to explore these powers in detail, but it seems that she can speak to small creatures while she sleeps. We see her talking to a colony of rats that lives in the prison. The queen of the colony agrees to help her, provided Evie helps prevent memebers of her colony from falling victim to rat poison. Now, this did catch me off guard. I understood that Evie seemed to have a connection to insects, especially moths, but not mammals. There have always been moths around her, and there are always moths around when something major is happening. Still, I’m curious to see how this whole explination pans out.
Now, there is one part of this seciton that was simply satisfying. In the precious section, a guard by the name of Peters sexually assaults Jeanette. I won’t go into detail here, just know that the description of him coercing her into sexual acts is a bit graphic and upsetting, and anyone sensitive to that type of subject matter should be forwarned. However, Peters gets what’s coming to him. Ree decides to take matters straight to the warden, and she gladly follows through with the complaint. As it turns out, Ree provided the testimony and evidence that she needed to fire him, as she had wanted to do for ages, but did have concrete proof of his offenses. This section ends with Clint giving Peters a well deserved punch in the stomach.
The one thing that I’m really curious about is how this book is going to age. I think I’m going to pick this one up again in a few years and see. There are some pretty clear parallels to events that happened in the last few years. The book even mentions politicians by name. I’ve seen some criticism that this book is too political because of this. While I don’t quite agree, I can at least respect that point of view.