End Of Watch
By Stephen King
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Author’s Journal | Read Date 3.20.22 | TW: Violence, Language, Suicide, Death
Have you Read “the Bill Hodges Trilogy”?
Tell me what you thought!
I’m sad it’s over, but grateful to have been a part of the journey.
Time continues to pass since the events of the Mercedes Massacre but something strange is going on within the walls of the hospital where a semi-vegetative Brady Hartsfield spends his days seemingly wasting away staring at the screen of a cheap tablet gaming device.
Meanwhile, the unorthodox team of Holly Gibney and Bill Hodges are grinding away as PI’s of the “Finders Keepers” Agency. The two have been the perfect dichotomy to help one another grow, but when some alarming news may put an end to the agency, Bill must choose whether to prioritize work or his health.
Unfortunately, a mysterious patchwork of suicides begins to force Bill’s hand after a survivor hits a little too close to home. With the help of Jerome and Holly, Bill must put a stop to whatever or whoever might be behind these manipulative suicidal events. In the end, however, Bill’s one-track mind may lead to his ultimate demise.
Where our first two books in the trilogy are entirely contemporary, King closes out End of Watch with some paranormal darkness that readers may not have seen coming. This feels like a true return to King-esc writing. The characters quickly find that the supernatural and paranormal have been thrust upon them, and their only choice is to accept this reality and vanquish the darkness or perish under the villainous individual(s) wielding it.
I also found a lot of heart in the characters’ journeys here, and the conclusion of the novel is not only very cathartic but also deeply tragic. I’m reminded of themes from the “Reichenbach Falls” of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes.
Well of course we have to talk about Brady Hartsfield. He’s a bigot, a sexist, a racist — he’s all the -ists, okay? He’s a BAD person. Unfortunately, people like him exist and that can be very triggering for some readers. It certainly would be understandable if his existence put off readers who need to shield themselves from such villainous plot devices.
Otherwise, my only other complaint would be that the resolution felt a bit forced. Don’t get me wrong it was incredibly fitting in many ways, but when I think of the conclusion to the novel I think more about that final moment between Holly and Jerome than the conclusion with Dr. Z.
End of Watch is hands down my favorite book in the trilogy. Bill and Holly’s respective arcs were great and set up Holly’s appearance in The Outsider quite well! But it’s Bill’s arc through the series that moved me to find a drop staining my cheek when I finally shut the cover for the last time.
Where we find him in book one: broken, alone, and lost; is not where he gets to end his story. It was a heart-wrenching and fitting end, to say the least.
I one-hundred percent recommend this trilogy and am glad to have it on my shelves!
For more of my overall opinions and takeaways on King’s Bill Hodges Trilogy, as well as End of Watch head over to Ko-Fi and consider joining my “knowledge tier” for more in-depth reviews and takeaways on novels and KindleVella exclusives that won’t be find anywhere else.
Review also available on Goodreads
For more reviews by genre CLICK HERE
Stephen King on AMAZON
The Complete Bill Hodges Trilogy
If you’ve enjoyed this review or any of my reviews, maybe my Kindle Vella recommendations, or my serial novel Season of The Monster, please consider supporting my future self-publishing endeavors on Ko-Fi.
My blog is currently monetized with a small assortment of affiliate links. If you click on these links and make a purchase, I earn a small commission.
I am grateful for all those helping me to continue doing what I LOVE! For more information on the affiliate programs this blog is enrolled in, please read the Affiliate/Advertiser Disclosure/Disclaimer.