Book Review: Gwendy’s Button Box (The Button Box #1)


Hello Booksters!

How are your 2023 reads going? Any awesome novels I should be checking out?

If you’ve been watching my blog lately, you probably know I’m in a little bit of a reading slump. Two DNF’s back to back is something of a suckerpunch. I’m usually really careful with my book choices and go with my gut, so for it to be wrong like this is a little tough. That being said, I’m hellbent on finding some good reads, so I gave another one a go!

This time I went with Gwendy’s Button Box (The Button Box #1) by Stephen King & Richard Chizmar.

I was originally going to go with a MG or graphic novel, but when I read the preview for this it seemed to stick, so I dove right in. Is this the book that will end my slump? On to the review!




The little town of Castle Rock, Maine has witnessed some strange events and unusual visitors over the years, but there is one story that has never been told… until now.

There are three ways up to Castle View from the town of Castle Rock: Route 117, Pleasant Road, and the Suicide Stairs. Every day in the summer of 1974 twelve-year-old Gwendy Peterson has taken the stairs, which are held by strong (if time-rusted) iron bolts and zig-zag up the cliffside.

At the top of the stairs, Gwendy catches her breath and listens to the shouts of the kids on the playground. From a bit farther away comes the chink of an aluminum bat hitting a baseball as the Senior League kids practice for the Labor Day charity game.

One day, a stranger calls to Gwendy: “Hey, girl. Come on over here for a bit. We ought to palaver, you and me.”

On a bench in the shade sits a man in black jeans, a black coat like for a suit, and a white shirt unbuttoned at the top. On his head is a small neat black hat. The time will come when Gwendy has nightmares about that hat…

Journey back to Castle Rock again in this chilling new novella by Stephen King, bestselling author of The Bazaar of Bad Dreams, and Richard Chizmar, award-winning author of A Long December.



***Brief disclosure***

I am an Amazon affiliate and earn a tiny commission for purchases made through the Amazon links in this post at no cost to you. It’s a great way to help me keep things running on my blog if you’re already intrigued enough to make a purchase. 


The Review

I found my new favorite series in this novel, and I couldn’t be happier!

In this book we follow a young girl named Gwendy Peterson. As she rests at the top of some outdoor stairs in her neighborhood, she meets a mysterious man who offers her a strange object, a button box. As she grows up, possessing and using the box alters her life in bizarre, sometimes horrifying ways.

First and foremost, the writing of this book was what really drew me in. The flow and pacing was handled expertly, and I finished this in just a couple sittings because I couldn’t get enough.

Gwendy is a smart girl and was super easy to root for. As she learns more about the box, she learns just how much it affects not only her but the people around her. Her personal journey was to find a middle ground, which is a lot harder than it seems.

Unlike some of King’s more horrifying reads, this one had more elements of mystery and intrigue to it that was refreshing. There were some chilling developments along the way, and mixing that with her coming of age experiences created a perfect balance that made it easy to keep reading.

I loved every minute of this book and can’t wait to read the next one! If you like lighter Stephen King reads or just want something a little different from intense horror, you’ve gotta try this one out!


That’s A Wrap!

Well that’s it for this book review. I hope you enjoyed it!

Have you read this book? Are there other similar books you’ve read that you simply have to gush about? Feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to start a conversation!

Have a great day!


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