I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect from “A Night With Stephen King”—which sounds amusingly like a reality show with potential horror elements—one of the numerous King author events as part of his tour to promote End of Watch, the final book in King’s Bill Hodges trilogy. The last-minute addition of George R. R. Martin as the moderator left me even more at sea. Would it be a reading from the book? A Q & A where a select few could parse King’s motivations or habits or plot points?
It was actually none of these things, and still managed to be an enjoyable evening. Set at the 2 300-seat Kiva Auditorium at the Albuquerque Convention Center (which looked to be filled at approximately 75 percent capacity), it resembled nothing as much as a two-man, one-act play. The stage was set with two comfortable leather chairs, with King on the left, his long legs stretched out in front of him, while Martin sat to the right, facing King while they traded stories about writing, politics, the nature of evil, and oddly enough, rats.