Joyland is the 35th stand-alone novel by popular American author, Stephen King. When twenty-one-year-old Devin Jones starts his summer job at Joyland, he’s just there to earn money for College, but before the year is out, his life has been radically changed. To begin with, he learns a lot and makes some true friends. He finds he likes the job, the variety of his chores, even “wearing the fur”, dressing up as Howie the Happy Hound.
But there’s a story that the Horror House is haunted by the ghost of a girl who was murdered there four years earlier, and Devin is curious. He stays on when all the summer temps leave, and makes friends with a crippled boy, his little dog and eventually, his beautiful mother. But he has no idea just what effect his curiosity will have, and whom it will endanger.
Once again, the master story teller is at the top of his game. His characters have enough depth and appeal enough to endear them to the reader, while his plot is wholly believable. This is a coming-of-age tale that has humour, heartache, a mystery with twists and red herrings, and an exciting climax. Once again, King does not disappoint. Horror it isn’t, but a darn good read is an apt description.