For me, this book had a lot of charm, though at times it could have been a little more... what's the word... it could have had more flow. I don't think that's the right word, but bear with me.
Once again, King excels at characterisation and the way he wrote Norman was utterly convincing and had justification. As darchy said, despite his rather tragic and disgusting upbringing, you don't actually feel SYMPATHY for him, much like the psychotic child from "It" and his father, Crazy Butch.
I also dug how he wrote the character of Rosie, she starts so vulnerable and a dull wallflower who has no confidence, but as time goes one, she grows a spine and she learns how to live once more, and becoming a better person for it.
Her attachment to the painting explains volumes in regards to how she sees things that other people do not, ie. the deeper meaning of the picture and the strange kinship she feels for the woman on the hill, before she even steps into Rose Madder's world.