“A Good Marriage” a novella by Stephen King from the collection “Full Dark, No Stars”

I finally drew the three of spades for my “project: deal me in” on Saturday, and was thus finally ‘allowed’ to read the last of the four novellas in this Collection by Stephen King. I’ve written about the other three (1922, Fair Extension, and Big Driver) elsewhere on this blog. This last story was titled “A Good Marriage.”


King mentions in his comments in the back of the book* that the “inspiration” for this story came to him when reading about the “BTK” killer, Dennis(?) Rader, who, if some are to be believed, carried out his heinous acts unbeknownst to his spouse. King began to speculate upon what the course of events would be if a spouse DID find out her husband was secretly a serial killer. Chapter one describes how the “happy couple” had reached this point in their lives, only hinting about “that day in the garage” where the reader assumes some discovery is made or some incident occurs.

There is good suspense as the wife goes through a natural stage of denial and then ponders what to do about her situation. Her resolution is a bit surprising, but in a way I liked the way King wrapped things up, especially with the final paragraphs involving a visit to the wife by the shrewd, semi-retired detective.

This was not my favorite story in the book though – actually maybe my least favorite, perhaps in a dead heat with the story, Big Driver. Still, King fans – and I count myself among them – are likely to enjoy it.

*One thing I really appreciate about Stephen King is that he frequently gives us a peek into his process, as he does in this collection. As readers,we’re often thinking, “Where did this story come from?!” and the like. King is gracious enough to let us know.