Colorado Kid is a Stephen King Novel that first came out in 2004 and has been out of print for the last decade. Published under the Hard Case Crime imprint by Winterfall LLC (in association with Titan Books), this one is a fast-paced mystery read which can be devoured in one sitting.
On an island off the coast of Maine, a man is found dead. Though seemingly a case of choking, there is no body identification, and the local investigators never cared much about the case either. A pair of local newspaper journalists and a graduate of Forensic Science take up the investigation and try to find out the truth behind the death.
This Stephen King Novel works to a considerable extent as a neatly written mystery. Colorado Kid is not your conventional police procedural, as the focus here is mainly on the identity of the victim and the reason for his mysterious appearance on Maine Island. The interactions between the principal characters, I believe, are the highlight of this book. Though a mystery thriller, the writer gets due credit for not making this too dark. Written in a light-hearted tone, the novel also takes a satirical look at the tabloid culture and police apathy. The book also has underlying themes of discrimination, high-handedness of investigators, investigative journalism, tabloid culture, and life in the 80 s. I liked how the author managed to throw little clues at regular intervals (the pack of cigarettes with the stamp, the Russian Coin ), slowly unraveling the mystery. The climax is also decently done.
On the downside, the book takes its own sweet little time to arrive at the main plot as the initial pages are mostly spent introducing to the readers the news staff of The Weekly Islander and their new intern Stephanie and her deduction skills. As mentioned earlier, the initial few pages feel a bit off as a lot of time is spent establishing the setting. Also, there might be mixed feelings for those looking for a straight forward climax.
This new edition published in 2019 is also an illustrated one, and I must say that it did help in making it an enjoyable reading experience.
The fans of the author would relish this one!