I've been 'reading' The Hangman's Daughter by Oliver Potzch for a couple of weeks now. By 'reading' I mean to say that I've been listening to it on audio while reading along on my Kindle. Kindle has this terrific little feature that will read a book aloud while highlighting the text being read. It costs extra, of course, but when a book is the Kindle daily deal, as The Hangman's Daughter was, it's only 99 cents extra.
I decided to try it out. It's been helpful while reading in bed. At my now advanced age, I find that reading in bed will put me to sleep in about a chapter if I'm lucky. I can do a little better with an audio book. I thought the read-a-long feature on the Kindle might keep my concentration up a bit so I could get through two or three chapters before dozing off.
It helped for a while.
But one night, when I fell asleep a bit early, the Kindle kept reading until it had finished most of the book. I rewound to about where I felt I'd fallen asleep and tried to restart but the read-a-long feature lost it. Now it reads a few words, then skips forward twenty pages, reads a few words, skips back sixty pages, skips forward, skips backwards.....
I've had to turn off the text altogether. The audio works alone so now I'm just listening to the book, no text.
And the audio puts me right to sleep in five or six 'pages.'
Since watching Room 237, the documentary about obsessive fans of Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, I've been planning a Stephen King/Shining fest of my own--read The Shining, watch Kubrick's The Shining, read King's sequel Dr. Sleep.
But I've had a devil of a time trying to find a copy of The Shining. My library doesn't have a copy on the shelf. The library in the next town over doesn't either. My local bookstore does not have it. The nearest Half Price Books has lots of books by Stephen King but not The Shining.
So I went on Amazon to see if they had a used copy listed for a penny. They have lots of used copies of most older books at just a penny plus shipping, which usually works out to four dollars. No used copies at a penny, but it is available as a Kindle edition for just 1.99.
I didn't buy the audio read-a-long feature this time, since it's 7.45. The Shining is cheap, but it's no daily deal.
Last night I was able to read four chapters without falling asleep.
It's been close to 30 years since I read The Shining, but I find it quite good so far. It's really a study of alcoholism and its affect on one small family. I'm impressed with it. I can see why Stephen Kings hates the Kubrick movie as much as he does, too. I'll keep on listening to The Hangman's Daughter, but so far, The Shining is the better "book."