Prior to reading The Outsider, I watched the mini series on Netflix, so I knew the basic story line. In the early going of the show, they stayed true to the novel, but then diverged as it progressed. The concept of the novel is very compelling. Terry Maitland, a little league coach and teacher who the community respects has unassailable physical evidence and eye witness accounts that he murdered an 11 year old boy in the most heinous way possible, except that there is equally compelling physical and eye witness accounts that Maitland was far away when the murder happened.
Stephen King is without a doubt my favorite writer of all time. His early stuff is fantastic. He had a terrible stretch after his accident where his writing was subpar to be kind, and now he is definitely hitting his stride again with terrific fiction. The Outsider was top notch with excellent writing, a great plot, well-developed characters, and suspense that made me want to keep reading. It was one of King’s better works in what I consider the third phase of his writing career.
The supernatural and horror elements to the story are very well done. Everything was believable within the context of the story and the world the author built. There were no obvious flaws. My favorite part of the novel was when they were investigating Terry Maitland’s computer and found that he was watching Ozark on Netflix, making me wonder if Stephen King had any inkling that Jason Bateman would be playing Maitland on the HBO show. This is a novel that I would recommend.