“Joyland by Stephen King is a great read. Yes there is a murder at an entertainment park. But it was years ago and now some park visitors on the Horror Hollow ride report seeing the ghost of the murdered girl in the darkest part of the tunnel. Tightly plotted the author takes the reader on a journey to finding the killer.
Devin Jones signs up to work at Joyland during the summer break from college. He knows nothing about working at a carnival, but soon learns the lingo, works on the various rides and wears the fur - the dog costume of Happy Howie the Carnival Dog. He also makes friends with the other workers including the resident psychic who warns him about his future.
When Devin hears about the ghost in the tunnel he persuades, Ellie and Tom, who also work the carnival, to come with him on the ride. Devin wants to see the ghost. Unfortunately he does not see her, but Tom does and it had a profound effect on him. There is a picture of the girl and her attacker taken before the fateful ride, but the face of the man she is with is obscured by his cap.Devin begins to wonder if she was the first or the latest death of this killer.
He also makes friends with a young woman, her son and his dog Milo, who live in a large house on the beach. The boy Mike has DMD (a form of Muscular Dystrophy) and is confined to a wheel chair. His mother is not very welcoming at first, but Mike likes him and they soon become friends.
Fall comes and Ellie and Tom return to college. Devin decides to skip this semester of school and remain at the carnival for the winter. He asks Ellie to do some research on the killing while she is at school, since she will have greater access to research sources.
The information Ellie finds is more murders, all associated with carnivals. She also asks a friend to clean up the picture of the man with the murdered girl at Joyland. Ellei brings the material to Devin on Spring Break and when they go over the photo they realize the police did not see an important clue.
LadySatel wrote this review Saturday, August 17, 2013.