The Virtual Bookcase Reviews of 'The Dark Half':
Reviewer amazon.com wrote:
In 1985, 39-year-old Stephen King announced in public that his pseudonymous alter ego, Richard Bachman, was dead. (Never
mind that he revived him years later to write The Regulators.) At the beginning of The Dark Half (1989), 39-year-old writer Thad
Beaumont announces in public that his own pseudonym, George Stark, is dead.
Now, King didn't want to jettison the Bachman novel, titled Machine Dreams, that was he working on. So he incorporated it in The
Dark Half as the crime oeuvre of George Stark, whose recurring hero/alter ego is an evil character named Alexis Machine.
Thad Beaumont's pseudonym is not so docile as Stephen King's, though, and George Stark bursts forth into reality. At that point,
two stories kick into gear: a mystery-detective story about the crime spree of George Stark (or is it Alexis Machine?) and a horror
story about Beaumont's struggle to catch up with his doppelganger and kill him dead.
This is not the first time that Stephen King has written a dark allegory about the fiction writer's situation. As the New York Times
writes, "Misery (1987) is a parable in chiller form of the popular writer's relation to his audience, which holds him prisoner and
dictates what he writes, on pain of death. The Dark Half is a parable in chiller form of the popular writer's relation to his creative
genius, the vampire within him, the part of him that only awakes to raise Cain when he writes, the fratricidal twin who occupies 'the
womblike dungeon' of his imagination."
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