Cycle of the Werewolf is King's shortest mass-produced and stand-alone) works. It is shorter than Carrie and Rage. And it's little more than a blip on the impressive radar screen of King's canon.
But it's got those pictures!
Actually, a lot can be said for Cycle. The intense scenes of the werewolf's attacks are among King's most gruesome, especially the remains of the pig attack. It's a campfire story, a scary story. It goes for the jugular.
And those excellent pictures!
King draws the small town of Tarker's Mills as eloquantly as he did Salem's Lot and would later draw Derry, even though it's a lot more compressed. His use of the weather as a precursor to violence is excellent (especially the snowier scenes; very reminiscant of "Gray Matter".)
And then, there are the pictures. Berni Wrightson, who worked with King on the comic book Creepshow and would later draw the illustrations for the unexpergated The Stand, gives us some wonderful black and white drawings, depicting the change of season in Tarker's Mills. Balancing those are the vibrant color of the werewolf's attack scenes, violent and nightmarish (especially the face-torn cop!)
This collaberation of writer and artist is successful in spite of its limitations. It doesn't give answers to the werewolf's nature, but that is all right. We don't really need them. What it gives is a fun and furious decent into monster madness, and the handicapped child who overcomes it. Rockin' good time.