by Stephen King
Hardcover, 448 pages
Fear State: Perfection (5/5)
Finders Keepers begins in the home of famed writer John Rothstein. King explores one of his reoccurring themes of famed authors and their crazed fans in the fatal events of a robbery going wrong in Rothstein’s home. A young man named Morris Bellamy is obsessed with a character written by Rothstein named “Jimmy Gold”. He refuses to believe Rothstein would allow his beloved character to sell out and be normal. Rothstein’s response to the young man’s criticism of his writing would ultimately result in his death. The author had gone into a self-imposed seclusion after the success of his novels. It was rumored that he still wrote daily. Bellamy heard those rumors which birthed the idea of robbing the authors. His unwitting accomplices believed the robbery was about money. Yet, what they didn’t know the true prices what one hundred and fifty novels of unpublished work. They made off with the cash and the journals. Bellamy would bury the items he stole from Rothstein right before he’s sentenced for a rape that occurred shortly after.
The novel time hops between the aftermath of Bellamy’s mishaps in 1978 and the current life in 2009 of the Saubers family. Tom Saubers a husband and father of two was critically injured in the City Center Massacre by Brady Hartsfield. This story illustrates the aftermath of his family’s limping along financially after mounting medical bills drive them into more debt. On top of the fact that Tom was already laid off hence his reasons for being injured on that fateful day he’s developing an opioid addiction while recovering from his injuries. His marriage is becoming strained as he mentally attempts to wrestle with his new normal and depression over not being able to provide for his family.
The Saubers children find themselves tormented by their parents constant fighting. It overwhelms them intensely. That is until you Pete Saubers finds a trunk buried in the back of their home full of money and over 150 journals. He asks his sister what she would do if she found a buried treasure. As any other nine year old living in the turmoil of their parents’ daily fights she says, “I’d give it to mom and dad, so they could stop fighting.” Surely, Pete takes his sister’s advice sending his family into a slow but much needed recovery from their financial crisis. The journals introduce the teenager to the writings of John Rothstein. Now in the google era it doesn’t take young Mister Saubers very long to figure where the journals came from. This takes the boy on a tailspin trying to figure how the journals could further help his family. That is until the original thief sets out to claim what he believes is rightfully his. This installment in the Bill Hodges trilogy is more of a character builder diving deeper into the domino effect of City Center.
I actually enjoyed all of the characters. While it’s a slower read it provides deeper insight into how one event creates chaos in every possible way. It doesn’t seem as if the television adaptation will touch on this novel at all. I just caught up on the second season which seems to fully jump to the final installment of the trilogy. Finders Keepers is still worth the read in my opinion. Hopefully the Saubers family will make an appearance in Season 3?