The story begins with the scene of a mother reluctantly sending her son to a place which she feels uncomfortable with it. She hopes the son will change his mind but he insists to continue to do what he has decided to do. Her son, Garraty soon meets up a new friend, McVries who shares the nervousness before The Walk starts.
The Major arrives and starts calling their names. Everyone is given a number and feel unreal when they see the Major. Each of them will get a canteen and a wide belt with snap pockets which contains tubes of high-energy concentrate pastes.
A hundred of boys start to walk at 9 o'clock in the morning. Their speed will be monitored by the tiny radar dishes. There are certain rules need to be followed. Three warnings are given and if the fourth time you fall below four miles an hour you will be out of the Walk. But if you had three warnings and could manage to walk for three hours, the previous warnings will be cleared. If you have more than three warnings, you will get a ticket which nobody wants to have it, a ticket to death.
I guess Stephen King will be a good author for travel books. Imagine the landmarks and interesting places being told in a creative way plus uncommon imaginations. The entire story is about one hundred of boys walking continuously but the story doesn't bore me. I couldn't explain why but all I know that not everyone can write such story without making us falling asleep during the "walk".
As I kept reading, there was one point I felt this probably be the most horrific story compared to what I've read previously from him. The continuous and unknown ending of torture is way worse than a temporary shock from any monsters or ghosts. That's how I feel. Sometimes, I felt reluctant to continue reading it because I felt exhausted. I felt I was one of the participants and continuously walking every time when I continue reading it.
More reviews can be found on Goodreads: The Long Walk.