Queer Horror

Gerald's Game


book      fiction

  • Gerald's Game
  • Author: Stephen King
  • Publisher: Viking
  • Year: 1992
  • Country: US
  • 445 pages
Warnings
  5 point scale
Nudity:1
Sex:3
Violence:4
S&M:4
Rape:2

mutilation, torture, child abuse, cannibalism, necrophilia

book cover

Description:
Alone in their bedroom, Jessie and Gerald Burlingame are playing a game of trust and control. Kinky sex is Gerald's game and lately he has taken to handcuffing his wife to the bedposts. But when her husband takes the game too far by handcuffing her to a bedpost, Jessie lashes out--with deadly results. But now she is trapped, with no way to escape the deathly quiet of the room. As the long hours pass, cramps bite like iron jaws into Jessie's own flesh; but they're nothing compared to the thirst raging through her.

Over the next twenty-eight hours, Jessie will come face-to-face with her most terrifying nightmares that exist in the last place she would ever look...her mind!

Qvamp says:

This book is a fantastic character development story. Though most of it involves a single character, and virtually no action, it does draw you in. If you ignore the weak end, it's a good story, but not for everyone (extremely graphic).

In this novel, through an odd set of circumstances, a woman named Jessie winds up chained to a bed in the middle of nowhere and has nothing but the voices in her head and memories of abuse to keep her company until she figures out how to escape. One of the 'voices' she hears is that of her old college roommate, Ruth. Ruth was always a tough gal, a feminist, no-nonsense, and Jessie stopped being her friend when Ruth pushed her to deal with her past instead of sweeping it under the rug. At one point she thinks about the last time she heard from Ruth:
'The card had borne a blurry Arizona postmark and the information that Ruth had joined a lesbian commune. Jessie hadn't been terribly surprised at the news; had even mused that perhaps her old friend, who could be wildly irritating and surprisingly, wistfully sweet (sometimes in the same breath) had finally found the hole on the great gameboard of life which had been drilled to accept her own oddly shaped peg.'

To balance out the positive portrayal of a queer character, a negative one was included. The 'demon' of the book, who torments Jessie, breaks into crypts to rob the corpses after screwing them, and occasionally eating them, turns out to 'prefer men.'

We are looking for a copy of this. If you own one and want to get rid of it, let us know!

Rating C+
Queer Vampire Rating C+
Amount of Gay Content affection

 

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Reviews


From JessWorks 9/8/2000

This is perhaps the one that really convinced me that King, if not the most politically correct writer, wasn't writing anything out of homophobia. In this novel, through an odd set of circumstances, a woman named Jessie winds up chained to a bed in the middle of nowhere and has nothing but the voices in her head and memories of abuse to keep her company until she figures out how to escape. One of the 'voices' she hears is that of her old college roommate, Ruth. Ruth was always a tough gal, a feminist, no-nonsense, and Jessie stopped being her friend when Ruth pushed her to deal with her past instead of sweeping it under the rug. At one point she thinks about the last time she heard from Ruth:

'The card had borne a blurry Arizona postmark and the information that Ruth had joined a lesbian commune. Jessie hadn't been terribly surprised at the news; had even mused that perhaps her old friend, who could be wildly irritating and surprisingly, wistfully sweet(sometimes in the same breath) had finally found the hole on the great gameboard of life which had been drilled to accept her own oddly shaped peg.'


I like that paragraph a lot. I think that King's depictions of all of his characters depend a lot on how the other characters view them, and that is why we often get homophobic passages and comments; he is depicting homophobic people, who are obviously a part of life. But when he can turn around and write gay characters with sympathy and care, to me that shows that he isn't harboring nasty prejudices of his own.

 

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