Hey all! I thought I'd celebrate my first published review by reviewing one of my favourite books of all time - Stephen King's The Long Walk.

America has become a police state, one hundred boys are selected to enter an annual contest where the winner will be awarded whatever he wants for the rest of his life.  There is no second prize.
The game is simple - maintain a steady walking pace of four miles per hour without stopping. Raymond (Ray) Garraty is one of a hundred boys, none older than eighteen, who are walking for the Prize.

Three warnings, and you're out - permanently.

In the near future , 100 boys are chosen annually to walk in a televised competition where the winner is the one not dead at the end of it all.  The rules are simple; walk and don’t stop, don’t drop below 4 miles per hour.  If you mess up, you get a warning, 3 warnings and then you get a ticket - a bullet to the head, throat, wherever they can get it in.  The ultimate battle of mind against body.  The story follows Raymond Garraty, a boy who doesn’t know why he entered the competition and left behind everything good in his life.
So, I have read this book so many times but I thought I’d do a review of it anyway because I absolutely love it.  This book was the only Stephen King book in my school library I was the only person to have ever borrowed it.  So it became a yearly tradition for me to borrow this book as a kind of fuck you to the librarians who didn't think girls should be reading Stephen King and who constantly gave me looks like; do you really want to read that?  It was my way of getting back at those damn sexist librarians who didn’t think I could handle anything more than Vampire Academy - not judging that book by the way, it's up there on my tbr. 
Anyway, that is my rant over, on to the novel.  Every time I read this novel I find out something new about the story, it's always like stepping into something different - the same main plot but you pick up on different emotions; the way Garraty uses his girlfriend to get through the walk, the way Stebbins is barely holding on or the impact of Olsen’s deterioration.
Probably the thing that I love most about this book is the world building.  It is both tangible yet illusive and it left me longing to know more about the society and how the world got to be that way.  As for the characters, they are so real.  King just has a way of creating characters that are almost painfully human; flawed, egotistical, vindictive and self-righteous yet upright, altruistic, generous and authentic. I was able to understand their confusion and regret
A lot of people compare this book to The Hunger Games and I can kind of understand why.  The only difference really is that The Hunger Games is like going on the pony ride at a fairy tale themed birthday party when placed next to The Long Walk.  The emotional trauma of this book digs deep and leaves you questioning everything.  It's shocking how quickly something can change, how a cold could become a fever or a foot cramp could mean a ticket. 
This is not a forgettable book and I recommend it to anyone who can handle people being shot gruesomely.  I also suggest reading this book at an older age because it is a lot harder to take in when young - I speak from experience.
WARNING - if you are not a fan of graphic violence, psychological torment, swearing and/or crude language, this likely isn’t the book for you because it contains all of the above.

Rating: 4/5

If you are interested in purchasing this book you can order it on Book Depository here or on Amazon.