troperville

tools

toys

SubpagesAwesome
Characters
Heartwarming
Literature
NightmareFuel
TearJerker
WMG
YMMV

main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Literature: Doctor Sleep

Doctor Sleep is a novel written by Stephen King and a sequel to one of his most famous novels, The Shining. Danny Torrance is now an adult struggling with alcoholism. He works at a hospice where, aided by a prescient cat, he is able to use his "shining" to give aid and comfort to the dying. He meets Abra Stone, a young girl with a "shining" of her own, who is being stalked by the True Knot, a group of psychic vampires who sustain themselves on children like her.

Needs Wiki Magic Love.

This story provides examples of:

  • Abusive Parents:
    • Deenie is a good example, although it's more out of neglect and addiction than anything.
    • Danny also warns Abra about her anger problems by relating his grandfather and father's own abusive tendencies.
  • Affably Evil: The True Knot may be horrible people, but their point-of-view chapters treat their evil so casually and matter-of-factly that you might not even notice it if you read them out of context. They love each other and essentially treat each other as family, and it doesn't help that they suffer so many blows and setbacks throughout the novel that towards the end they almost come across as victims rather than predators.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Dan sees two members of the True Knot embrace each other before they die and, despite all they had done, is moved by the sight.
  • The Alcoholic: Danny is one, but starts attending AA meetings after he arrives in New Hampshire. By the end of the book, he's celebrated 15 years of sobriety.
  • And I Must Scream: The fate of the ghosts that Danny locks inside the 'lockbox' in his mind.
  • Band of Brothers: The AA group. More specifically out of that group: Danny, Billy, and John.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: The psychic combat between Rose, and Abra & Dan.
  • Berserk Button: For Rose: do not touch the hat, and do not call her a coward.
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: Silent Sarey, who talks very little and with a severe speech impediment, can make herself almost invisible. Once Dan and company start killing members of the True Knot, she expresses a savage desire for revenge. She never gets to act on it, though, as the ghost of Horace Derwent kills her before she can come to Rose's aid in the final battle.
  • Big Damn Villains: During the climax, one of the last True Knot members is killed by the ghost of Horace Derwent, whom Dan had locked away in his mind previously.
  • Bilingual Dialogue: Concetta, Abra's great-grandmother, and Dan have a conversation where she speaks mostly in Italian and he in English, but they both understand each other perfectly.
    • Justified, since Danny's shine allows him to read minds, and Concetta is an accomplished poet who probably knows English better than he does.
  • Body Horror: Abra discovers that she can transport herself into someone else's head...and can feel when someone else is trying to do it right back.
  • Book Ends / Meaningful Echo: The book starts with an old AA saying, "FEAR stands for fuck everything and run." It ends with another old AA saying, "FEAR stands for face everything and recover."
  • Brass Balls: The aformentioned Band of Brothers, along with Abra's father, Dave, get the jump on the True Knot. They shoot without concern (and, in some cases, experience). John even slams himself into a True Knot member who was about to kill Dave. Later, Billy Freeman rams his truck into a lookout platform to distract Rose, injuring himself in the process.
  • Cats Are Magic: Danny works at a hospice where he befriends a cat that is able to predict when people are about to die. Based on a real therapy cat who had the same ability.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The ghost of Horace Derwent is captured in a mental lock box by young Danny early in the book. He is released by now adult Dan when they reach the final battle at the former site of the Overlook hotel. Derwent kills one of the True Knot hiding in ambush in a shed.
  • Compelling Voice: Snakebite Andi can cause people to fall into a deep sleep by asking them if they're feeling sleepy.
  • Creepy Uncle: Hallorann has one that abused him when he was young.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture/Cruel and Unusual Death: The True Knot's victims are put through long, excruciating torture before finally being killed. According to Rose, it's because pain purifies their steam, although she seems to take some pleasure in doing it.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Danny and Abra completely outclass the True Knot and Rose in the final showdown.
  • Dead Person Conversation: Hallorann has some strange ways of communicating with Danny.
  • Definitely Just a Cold: The True Knot get the measles from a boy they murdered in Iowa. Most of them just brush it off because they can't catch "rube diseases." Then they start dying...
  • Does Not Like Men: Snakebite Andi, who was repeatedly molested by her father as a child.
  • Drugs Are Bad: Alcoholics Anonymous features heavily in this book.
  • Empty Piles of Clothing: What members of the True Knot leave behind when they cycle out.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: The True Knot cares for one another and mourns the loss of their loved ones.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: Dogs can sense that the True Knot are up to no good.
  • Evil Gloating: A heroic example; as monstrous as the Knot are, Dan is still a little disturbed by just how vicious 13-year-old Abra gets when she goes up against Rose. See Tame His Anger below.
  • Evil Overlooker: The woman on the cover of the book is Rose the Hat, leader of the True Knot.
  • Eye Scream: The last things to disappear when a True Knot member cycles out is their eyes.
  • Happy Ending Override: The prologue shows that the ghosts from the Overlook have followed Danny home despite the Overlook's destruction. Later on, Danny falls into alcoholism like his father before him.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Referenced by name, even. When the True Knot feed on Bradley Trevor, "the baseball boy", what they don't realize is that Bradley was incubating a case of the measles, and it starts to make them sick. But the real point at which it is referenced is referring to how Dan defeats most of the remaining True Knot members: he holds the spirit of Concetta, Abra's recently deceased great-grandmother, in a lock-box in his mind, and releases it against them. They absorb it as steam, but it kills them all.
  • Honorary Uncle: Dan becomes this to Abra. Moves into Cool Uncle territory when the family link is uncovered.
  • Humanoid Abomination: It's revealed that the True Knot are this, as a result of consuming Steam. It's only briefly touched upon, but the description of their "Lizardy Thoughts" and of Rose's brief transformation into a being with pinhole eyes and a jaw that distends to her chest is quite enough to qualify.
  • I Am Not My Father: Danny attempts to stray from the demons that plagued his father. Said word-for-word in the final confrontation with Rose, where she manages to briefly trick Dan into strangling Abra, while he says "Come and take your medicine!"
  • Imaginary Friend: Tony is back. And he's not just communicating with Danny.
  • It Runs in the Family: The shining seems to run in the Torrance family. So do anger management problems.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: Rose tries to force Dan to choke Abra, even when one of them is not physically present. She almost succeeds.
  • Life Drinker: The True Knot consumes the "steam" of children who have the shining.
  • Little Miss Badass: Abra.
  • Long-Lost Relative: Abra's Mother is Dan's half-sister, the result of a fling between Jack Torrance and her deceased mother.
  • Male Gaze: Lots of attention is paid to Rose's appearance, usually her legs.
  • Marked to Die: Danny sees flies crawling on a person's face when they are about to die or are suffering from a potentially fatal illness. In one case, Danny is able to prevent his friend's death by telling him to go to the hospital at the first sight of the flies. He later sees the flies on his own face when he looks in a mirror, after he has absorbed Concetta's spirit and the cancer that killed her, but he recovers after releasing it against the True Knot.
  • Meaningful Rename: Members of True Knot go by names that have to do with their appearance or actions. Rose the Hat is known for her stylish top hat. Snakebite Andi has a snake tattoo. Jimmy Numbers handles the group's finances. With rare exception, their original names are never revealed.
    • Also Danny Torrence preferring to go by "Dan" as an adult.
  • Mythology Gag: Dan has kept his room at the Overlook as his safe place within his head, except he's added huge windows that couldn't possibly be there - much like the windows in Kubrick's The Shining.
  • Nervous Wreck: Lucy seems to be constantly on the verge of a breakdown.
  • No Body Left Behind: True Knot members "cycle out" when they die—their bodies partially fade away, then come back, repeating the process more rapidly and more completely until they finally disappear.
  • Older than They Look: The True Knot is made up of a range of ages, but most of them appear middle aged to elderly. Many of them are much older, with one claiming to remember when King Henry VIII started killing his wives. They even vary in appearance during the book, as when they take steam they look decades younger.
  • Properly Paranoid: Danny goes to great lengths to make sure he doesn't look like a pedophile when meeting up with Abra. They even come up with a story in case someone she knows happens upon them. Doesn't stop her father from assuming the worst when he's introduced to Dan, though.
  • Sequel Gap: Released 36 years after its predecessor.
    • The book self-references this, making oblique references to every American president from Jimmy Carter to Barack Obama and incorporating technological advances (cell phones, GPS, iPads, etc.).
  • Shout-Out:
    • There is a mention of Charlie Manx.
    • When Abra tries to attack Rose while she's trapped in Abra's mind, Abra makes herself over as a lance-bearing warrior on a horse, citing Daenerys Targaryen as her influence.
    • While the True Knot are traveling through the country, Jerusalem's Lot is mentioned.
    • At one point Dan says "There are other worlds than these," a phrase used several times in King's Dark Tower series.
    • One of John Dalton's patients mentioned in passing is named Fredrica Bimmel.
  • Stronger Than They Look: Danny isn't described as being a large or strong-looking man, but he's held his own in a series of bar brawls. He even scares the crap out of one of the orderlies, a large man with full sleeve tattoos and a bad attitude who bullies the patients, by knocking him out of his chair and threatening to beat his face in. And Danny was completely sober at the time.
  • Student and Master Team: Danny and Abra Stone.
  • Tailor-Made Prison: Danny makes three of these. Two are for Horace Derwent and the woman from room 217, who have followed him from the Overlook to home. The third is for Concetta Reynolds' spirit, which she passes on to him as she dies. Also doubles as a Chekhov's Gun.
  • Tame His Anger: Much like his father and grandfather, Dan has anger issues. The alcoholism (not to mention the childhood trauma and the psychic visions of dead people) isn't helping. Abra has it too, big time.
  • They Look Just Like Everyone Else: The True Knot are described as looking harmless; "mostly old, lots of polyester, and married to their RVs".
  • Unspoken Plan Guarantee: Basically the entire last quarter of the book.
  • Vampiric Draining: The True Knot aren't vampires in the traditional sense, rather they feed on the "steam" that is produced by children with the shining after they die. Apparently they do enjoy licking the blood off of their victims as they torture them, though.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Rose goes through several over the course of the book.
  • Would Hurt a Child: The True Knot, who brutally torture children with the shining to death to sustain their immortality.
  • Your Vampires Suck: The Knot are nothing like the ones in Twilight.


The ShiningWorks By Stephen KingSkeleton Crew
The DivinersHorror LiteratureThe Dollmaker
The DivinersLiterature of the 2010sDodger

random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
28690
40