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Ruminations on the Works of Stephen King
ANicholson's so rascally! He's the only one who can do what he does.
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A[quote name="Carnotaur3" url="/community/t/110258/ruminations-on-the-works-of-stephen-king/360#post_4475828"]
Jack Torrence is not likable in Kubrick's version. 

Are you... MAD?!
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[Image: 400]
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I plan on rereading The Shining and Salem's Lot this October to get into the Halloween frame of mind. Yes I know planning months in advance what books I want read means I need a life.

I've got good news and I've got bad news. The bad news is that I have lost my way. The good news is that I'm way ahead of schedule.
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Chaz View Post
 

I plan on rereading The Shining and Salem's Lot this October to get into the Halloween frame of mind. Yes I know planning months in advance what books I want read means I need a life.



Nah, planning and organising how to best utilise your time for maximum efficiency and minimising waste is how you get a life.

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AI was thinking I was due for a Salem's Lot re-read as well. I have been listening to the Consequence of Sound King podcast and it has been stoking my desire to dive into Good King.
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ALast year, my resolution was to power through as many King novels as I could. Here's what I read:

Carrie
'Salem's Lot
The Shining
The Stand
Cujo
Firestarter
Christine
It

Technically, I finished It last month, not in 2017. Now I'm about halfway through Dreamcatcher.
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ASo what’re you waiting for? Rank ‘em!
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AI love them all equally.
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AI really need to read Salem’s Lot and The Stand, two of his greatest that I’ve yet to get to.
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Bradito View Post

Last year, my resolution was to power through as many King novels as I could. Here's what I read:

Carrie
'Salem's Lot
The Shining
The Stand
Cujo
Firestarter
Christine
It

Technically, I finished It last month, not in 2017. Now I'm about halfway through Dreamcatcher.

DON"T DO IT. PUT DOWN DREAMCATCHER AND RUN BEFORE ITS TOO LATE

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_King_bibliography



I've read everything on this list from 1974-1986 (I'm pretty sure I read Thinner - it seems to be familiar and I haven't seen the movie).



Haven't read Eyes of the Dragon though I hired it from the library a few times and I abandoned The Gunslinger Book II about halfway through back in 1989 where it remains on the bookshelf to this day.



I increasingly haven't read the post 1989 stuff.



None of the Gunslinger novels and only: Insomnia (not good), Rose Madder (I really regret this), The Regulators (two for one deal with the one previous to this, regret buying them both), Bag of Bones (I literally don't remember this apart from a reviewer saying he couldn't not see the billionaire in this as C. Montgomery Burns and then *I* couldn't), Dreamcatcher (so-so hand signal), From a Buick 8 (this was terrible), Cell (so-so again), Under the Dome (never again am I falling for an Amazon special - makes an excellent doorstop, though), Doctor Sleep (I am not reading any more of his books for the foreseeable future - almost retroactively ruined The Shining for me. I hated this book).



As for the collections:



All except Hearts in Atlantis and The Bazaar of Bad Dreams



Once again, his older stuff is better.



I do own a copy of The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon (unread) and Duma Key (read enough of it - not much - to know I didn't want to read any more).



TL;DR - The things he writes, in some way it's shifted to a place I don't want to follow. I just don't like it anymore. The types of stories are different and the style of writing is different in a way I can't articulate but I know what I like and I increasingly don't like this.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Shan View Post
 

All except Hearts in Atlantis




TL;DR - The things he writes, in some way it's shifted to a place I don't want to follow. I just don't like it anymore. The types of stories are different and the style of writing is different in a way I can't articulate but I know what I like and I increasingly don't like this.



I can get behind your feelings. I will defend Under the Dome to a point (and I have upthread), and I dig 11/22/63. I thought Cell  was interesting, but not top shelf King. A man as prolific as King is going to have a quality curve.



 As for Hearts in Atlantis, it spoke to me. The three stories are very different. He goes back to a time period he can write (the 50s and 60s) and characters he can write (teens and adults in the 50s and 60s and people in their mid to late 50s). The first story is a child and an older person bonding while crazy King Universe shit happens. It feels like It or "The Body" or Salem's Lot  in tone. The second is about college in the time of drafts for Vietnam and a running game of hearts and the madness of the time. It feels like The Stand in a what do people do when it feels like the world is falling apart. There is no supernatural in the piece--just human nature. The final story is about being grown and looking back on that time period. This felt honestly more like a Tim O'Brien novel than a King novel.



My high school/ college friend group were avid card players, and hearts was our jam. We could kill some time with a deck of cards, and that section felt so much like my college experience, but the dread of Vietnam was the dread of adulthood (and post 9/11 conversations about whether we should join the military or not. It came close.).

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A11/22/63 is some higher tier King for sure.
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AHe’s an older guy, who thinks like an older guy. Less vitality, less exuberant creativity, but also less juvenile and more measured. Young King would never write stuff as dull as Sleeping Beauties or Mr Mercedes, but he also didn’t have the hindsight and emotional intelligence for 11/22/63 or Joyland.

I think young King is a bit overrated relative to old King, but it’s undeniable that his big iconic titles mostly happened 1975-1990. But so did a lot of stuff like Tommyknockers.

To some extent, he’s Spielberg. His own success makes it impossible to ever top himself, and he simply doesn’t have the youth that typified his early work anymore, but there’s still something left in the tank, for sure.
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AIs Tommyknockers that bad?
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AI’m struggling through it now, and it’s not that it’s terrible, exactly. It’s mostly wildly indulgent and overwritten. It’s super violent and gross, but for like eight hundred pages. And all its best qualities are done better in other King books. It’s also supremely not scary, though it’s trying real hard.
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Quote:

Originally Posted by NickP View Post

Is Tommyknockers that bad?


It's one of my favourites. Part of the Golden Run Triple Play for me when our school library got: It, Misery and The Tommyknockers in quick succession.



I am however aware that I may not be aligned with majority consensus on this one.

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AMisery always has a place in my heart cause it was my very first.

I’ll never forget the look on Mrs. Trotter, my 5th grade teacher when I would bring it to read during free time...
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AWere you still in her class or did you just show up randomly, years later?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Call Me Roy View Post

Misery always has a place in my heart cause it was my very first.


This actually reads like a quote from Annie Wilkes herself.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Bradito View Post

Were you still in her class or did you just show up randomly, years later?


Congratulations Roy, you've just been Bradito'd.

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ABetter than gettin’ Booned!!
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Call Me Roy View Post

11/22/63 is some higher tier King for sure.


11/22/63 is my all time favorite King novel. My favorites parts of the book are how Jake interacts with people in the past. My favorite and just to be on the safe side


Is when Jake races back to check on Sadie at the start of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Quote:

Originally Posted by NickP View Post

Is Tommyknockers that bad?

I enjoyed it in high school because it was so batshit crazy. I'm a tad more mature now, so I don't think I would like it as much.

I've got good news and I've got bad news. The bad news is that I have lost my way. The good news is that I'm way ahead of schedule.
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A"Hi, Ms. Trotter, I have some free time. My P.O. calls it 'parole,' but I call it 'free time!'"
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Call Me Roy View Post

Better than gettin’ Booned!!


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http://variety.com/2018/film/news/stephe...202739627/

[Image: 1*evsRlXzetp7FdEOK2ynL1Q.gif]
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Apparently they are finally making a Long Walk movie

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-v...ne-1105541

Probably my favorite King. My body is ready to nit pick and judge.
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'Bout damn time.
Someday, you’re going to fuck up so magnificently, so ambitiously, so overwhelmingly that the sky will light up and the moons will spin and the gods themselves will shit comets with glee.

PSN ID: anakinsdad

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Stephen King DGAF.



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https://www.tor.com/features/series/the-...ng-reread/


Thought I'd post these here if it hasn't been already. Grady Hendrix, who wrote Paperbacks From Hell, has re-read and reviewed every King novel and collection. He brings a interesting perspective to these reviews and isn't afraid to point out some of King's shortcomings as writer. His review of Desperation has finally made me interested enough to dig that book out of my attic and give it a proper read.
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Having just reread THE STAND, I found myself in half-agreement with Hendrix. I think the book (and its characters) are more complex than he gives credit for (though he does finally give it some). And while the seams are very apparent to me now, I've only read the Uncut/Restored edition and really have no desire to read the "shorter" version.

While I understand it's a product of its time (as all art is), this time through I found King's depictions of women far more problematic than any so-called shallow dualism or King supposedly siding with "irrational mysticism" over science.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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Much as I love it, The Stand is far from a perfect book. I generally agree with his criticisms, particularly the point he makes about the characters getting a shove from the heavens whenever the plot lags, but he also touches on something that's key to King's success over the years, his ability to create three-dimensional and then allow the reader to spend sufficient time with them. For me, that's what sets The Stand apart from something like Swan Song.

I also found his review of The Green Mile to be fascinating. He gives a spirited defense of the John Coffey character and explains why the "magic negro" criticism is unfounded, and I think he's spot-on.
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I found it interesting that Tommyknockers was given a good review. I did enjoy it when I was 17, but now I just chalk that up to being young and liking something for being batshit crazy. I still would like to see it made into a movie. I would pitch it as an R rated Flash Gordon. Yes I remember the mini-series, but I want to see a good adaption.

 I 100 percent agree that Jake and Sadie's love story is the core of 11.22.63. I was rooting more for those two to live happily ever after, more than for Kennedy to be saved.
I've got good news and I've got bad news. The bad news is that I have lost my way. The good news is that I'm way ahead of schedule.
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Desperation was the 6th or 7th King novel I read, and after a tense as hell, shocking first 150 pages, it really suffers for relying on characters intuitively feeling they must follow some supernatural grand plan or ritual, implicitly God's. I realised this had been a subconscious issue for me in much of The Stand (which remains one of the most solidly entertaining reading experiences of my life) too, and it's heavily present in IT and, with a malevolent twist, Pet Sematary.

It's the King trope I like the least, with his writing of characters he wants us to find fundamentally decent through and through in second place. The old mother in The Outsider; Abra in Dr Sleep; Stu Redman in The Stand - I got sick of reading about how much the other characters loved and admired their folksiness/feistiness/salt-of the earth manliness.
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I'm very looking forward to ELEVATION later this month. Sounds pretty promising to me, so far...

"Although Scott Carey doesn’t look any different, he’s been steadily losing weight. There are a couple of other odd things, too. He weighs the same in his clothes and out of them, no matter how heavy they are. Scott doesn’t want to be poked and prodded. He mostly just wants someone else to know, and he trusts Doctor Bob Ellis.

In the small town of Castle Rock, the setting of many of King’s most iconic stories, Scott is engaged in a low grade—but escalating—battle with the lesbians next door whose dog regularly drops his business on Scott’s lawn. One of the women is friendly; the other, cold as ice. Both are trying to launch a new restaurant, but the people of Castle Rock want no part of a gay married couple, and the place is in trouble. When Scott finally understands the prejudices they face–including his own—he tries to help. Unlikely alliances, the annual foot race, and the mystery of Scott’s affliction bring out the best in people who have indulged the worst in themselves and others.

From Stephen King, our “most precious renewable resource, like Shakespeare in the malleability of his work” (The Guardian), Elevation is an antidote to our divisive culture, as gloriously joyful (with a twinge of deep sadness) as “It’s a Wonderful Life.”"
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