The Institute by Stephen King
The Stranger Things vibe is all over this book initially but then it diverts and goes down its own majestic Stephen King path. I'm a HUGE King fan and while this did not disappoint, it's definitely not my favorite of his work. Luke Ellis is a super genius twelve-year-old who has big plans to attend college when his whole world is altered the night a group of people break into his house, murder his parents, and ferry him off to the Institute. He wakes up in a bedroom almost identical to his own at home and discovers other kids at the Institute who are being held and forced to endure experiments and shots to expand their telekinetic and telepathic powers. All of this experimental torture takes place in Front Half but eventually kids are moved to Back Half where the real horrors exist, and they're never seen again. The staff at the Institute are heartless and cruel. King builds two simultaneous story lines between the Institute and Tim Jamieson, a disgraced former cop, now working the nightknocker shift in Dupray, South Carolina. I've always loved King's supernatural books more than his true horror (weird, I know) but the only thing I didn't love about this one is that it seems watered down. It's not as nasty as some of his books get, and I quite frankly miss the carnage. This makes me seem like a complete psycho since we're talking about kids, torture experiments, and kidnapping but in comparison to his other greats like The Stand and Under the Dome, this one was just sort of thinned out more than what I prefer in my King reads.
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Travel All the Pages is inspired by my two loves - travel and reading, a combo I can't resist. Enjoy these little pairings.