Review: 'Salem's Lot by Stephen King
Monday, October 31, 2011
Author Ben Mears has returned to the town of Jerusalem's Lot, Maine, where he spent the best years of his childhood. He had a traumatic, horrifying experience there, and he wants to write it out of his system at last.
Around the same time, two other men move into town, R. T. Straker and Kurt Barlow. They buy and move into the local house that has haunted Ben for years. And then people start disappearing...
Parts of this felt a little familiar. Little Mark Petrie reminded me of Jake from The Dark Tower series and the kid from The Talisman. Ben reminded me of someone too, I just can't put my finger on who. And then there's the name Susan. I wonder if there's a Susan in King's past.
That slight familiarity aside, I did enjoy this. I think part of what gives me the willies when reading King's work is that he doesn't back away from using children in his horror stories. He kills them off when he has to and he turns them into evil little beings too. He uses children to chilling effect in this novel.
One of the subplots that I really liked was Father Callahan's struggle with faith. Maybe that's because I did read The Dark Tower series first, but I enjoyed "meeting" Father Callahan and learning more about him. His part in this book comes pretty late, so I'll refrain from discussing him more. I want to re-read his part in The Dark Tower now that I know more about him!
I really liked that the vampires in this book were real, true, evil vampires. Granted, this was written in the mid-70s, well before the current vampire love story craze (not knocking it at all), but it's still refreshing to read right now.
This is not the scariest book I've read by any means, but it's still left me a little edgy. The ghost I have hanging on my front door for Halloween is scratching at the glass and making me jumpy. I may have to move it before I go to bed! I definitely won't be yelling for anyone to come on in tonight, that's for sure!
Oh, and I adore this cover. It's very creepy even at first glance. And then you look closer and see those evil eyes peering out at you....Just perfect for this book.
This is by Stephen King. I think you either like him or you don't. If you like him, you'll like this one. If you're new to King, this might actually be a decent place to start. I think it's a pretty good representation of his work.
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