March 28, 2017, 05:09:35 AM

Author Topic: Stephen King  (Read 7284 times)

Offline AlmightyZael

Stephen King
« on: July 30, 2014, 09:37:07 PM »
So I searched for a thread about this guy. You all know him. His name's everywhere on this board, and his name's everywhere all the time anyway. Regardless, I couldn't find a thread (I know there's gotta be one somewhere, but if it's buried I guess we can make a new one?)

Basically, when I was a kid I heard of people talking about staying away from Stephen King because he was "****ed in the head." I thought that was unfair and unkind.
I didn't think a book could actually scare you. It was just words. Even to this day I haven't read a horror novel by King, which is why I ask the following questions.

Is it worth reading the rest of his works?
Which specific books would you recommend?
I've heard his style gets annoying (something about characters) - is this true? (very subjective question, I know :) )

To clarify, I'm specifically wondering whether or not to give his classic works a go - a la The Shining, Carrie, Cujo, Misery etc, but wanted your opinions before hand. I'm a slow reader, so time is valuable ;D

I've read The Eyes of the Dragon, which I freakin' loved! And I'm chipping away at the Dark Tower series (with The Gunslinger being one of my all time favourites, which I've mentioned elsewhere). I have a copy of Insomnia floating around somewhere, too.

Phew. Long post. 
Up Helly Aah!

Offline Idlewilder

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2014, 10:26:46 PM »
WHO? 

Oh, Joe Hill's Dad, you mean? Ah.

I will try and write a longer post tomorrow, but certainly I used to be a big King fan. He's such a prolific writer that there is some great stuff, some not-so-great and some utter dirge.

Misery is one of the single best thrillers ever written. The Shining is excellently chilling and The Stand is proper, proper epic horror as only King can do. There's obviously way more but certainly along with the Dark Tower that'd be a good starter for ten.

And Joe Hill is so far shaping up to be even better.  ;)
Make Another World.

Offline AlmightyZael

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2014, 10:31:32 PM »
I've seen parts of the movie adaptations, and there's something that's drawing me to try and experience some of that 80's/90's culture of horror, so I will look into the ones you mentioned :) Thankee-sai :P
Up Helly Aah!

Offline Hedin

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2014, 05:57:43 PM »
I love The Stand, the first time I read it I finished it over an entire weekend (I slept very little that weekend).  Of course in a book that long there are some so-so parts that I kind of skim through whenever I re-read but overall it is probably one of my favorite books. 

Offline JonRock411

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2014, 01:34:11 AM »
If you're reading Dark Tower, then you MUST read 'Salem's Lot, The Stand, It, and a few others that I can't remember.   It will help out a lot in the second half. 

Some other books I'd suggest you read include The Dead Zone, The Long Walk (which is one of the Richard Bachmann books), Carrie, Pet Semetary, the novella collection Different Seasons, Firestarter, The Green Mile, 11/22/63, Under The Dome, and Lisey's Story

Oh yeah, and On Writing. 

I would make a note that it helps to read King, especially his early stuff, as period pieces since he makes his settings resemble when they're written to a large degree.

Offline AlmightyZael

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2014, 02:54:34 AM »
If you're reading Dark Tower, then you MUST read 'Salem's Lot, The Stand, It, and a few others that I can't remember.   It will help out a lot in the second half. 


Yeah I've heard of the numerous connection he makes to his other books. Hopefully they aren't majorly important to the story though, right? I thought they were just characters with the same name/personality (twinnies, I think he calls them)
Luckily I understood the first mention of Flagg and how he was being chased. That was cool beans, man.
Up Helly Aah!

Offline JonRock411

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2014, 03:03:56 AM »
If you're reading Dark Tower, then you MUST read 'Salem's Lot, The Stand, It, and a few others that I can't remember.   It will help out a lot in the second half. 


Yeah I've heard of the numerous connection he makes to his other books. Hopefully they aren't majorly important to the story though, right? I thought they were just characters with the same name/personality (twinnies, I think he calls them)
Luckily I understood the first mention of Flagg and how he was being chased. That was cool beans, man.

It's not necessary but there is at least one major character outside Flagg who is from another book.    Twinners is a separate thing.   I suppose you could read the Dark Tower series without worrying about the connections but I personally feel it's a much lesser experience. 

Offline AlmightyZael

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2014, 03:07:14 AM »
Oh, yeah it's gonna take some of the value from it, I suppose.
But there's just a part of me that really doesn't like the idea of HAVING to read another 10 books before I can carry on with a series I know I'm enjoying right now.
That being said, would reading them the other way round still work? So finish DT and then see the connection in the other books?
Almost like you're still exploring DT even after the series is finished... if that makes sense...
Up Helly Aah!

Offline JonRock411

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2014, 04:29:25 AM »
Oh, yeah it's gonna take some of the value from it, I suppose.
But there's just a part of me that really doesn't like the idea of HAVING to read another 10 books before I can carry on with a series I know I'm enjoying right now.
That being said, would reading them the other way round still work? So finish DT and then see the connection in the other books?
Almost like you're still exploring DT even after the series is finished... if that makes sense...

Yeah, that's fine.  I may have exaggerated when I said they were a must. 

Offline Phil Norris

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2014, 12:15:28 PM »
Yes, Yes, yes read King's classic stuff. Carrie, Christine, The Shining, The Stand, It and so the list goes on. Definitely have a look at his anthologies as well, his short stories are great, take a look at the stuff he wrote as Richard Bachman as well (Running Man for instance).

Its also worth looking at his non-horror stuff, The Green Mile, Delorous Clayborn, Misery etc.

As for the Dark Tower. This is just a personal opinion but I dedicated over 20 years to this series and felt really let down by the ending, because of it I stopped reading King books so his newer stuff I have no knowledge of. The Gunslinger, Drawaing Of The Three and The Waste Lands is a brilliant trilogy, Wizard and the Glass a brilliant standalone, after that (for me) it kinda lost its way and King disappeared up his own butt.

And I 100% agree Joe hill is brilliant.
To have an idea is not enough - no matter how good the idea is.

Offline Timstar

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2014, 02:58:12 PM »
As for the Dark Tower. This is just a personal opinion but I dedicated over 20 years to this series and felt really let down by the ending, because of it I stopped reading King books so his newer stuff I have no knowledge of. The Gunslinger, Drawing Of The Three and The Waste Lands is a brilliant trilogy, Wizard and the Glass a brilliant standalone, after that (for me) it kinda lost its way and King disappeared up his own butt.

That's a very commonly held opinion and I fully agree. Apparently he was rushed by his publishers to finish, if you notice he wrote the last three books in 3 years after taking 16 years to do the previous four. His latest addition, The Wind Through the Keyhole wasn't much better either. It's a real shame, the series had great potential but the last three novels are basically garbage.

Not all his latest books have been though. 11/22/63 is brilliant. Under the Dome and Cell are also great reads.

Offline Phil Norris

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2014, 03:25:08 PM »
His latest addition, The Wind Through the Keyhole wasn't much better either.

I actually really liked this, being a shorter piece it didn't have any of the baggage Wolves of the Calla, Song for Suzanna of The Dark Tower had. Much like Wizard and the Glass the story within a story theme worked well and made me wanting to hear more.

To have an idea is not enough - no matter how good the idea is.

Offline whitepawn

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #12 on: August 01, 2014, 05:05:30 PM »
The Wolves of the Calla is Seven Samurai / Magnificent Seven done all Dark Tower.  (I confess I haven't read the series beyond book 5...that's where the series ended  in terms of publication when I read it...)

What a raging endorsement, eh?  I moved on to a serious audiobook addiction around that time and sometimes the local library simply isn't cooperative with audiobook availability...so, I'll wait longer.

The Talisman offers a look at the "territories".  The sequel is fairly "meh" but The Talisman remains one of my favorites...King/Straub write an amazing modern day fairy tale.  With wolves.

Offline AzWingsFan

Re: Stephen King
« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2014, 12:29:47 AM »
I'd also recommend to follow Joe Hill on Twitter to everyone who hasn't. Back to SK. I remember Cujo being truly scary. This was when I was younger, but great read.
Fan of Classic/Epic Fantasy and Grimdark

Working on writing a book. Any advice will be taken graciously.

Offline Elfy

  • Writing contest regular
  • Powers That Be
  • Ringbearer
  • *
  • Posts: 6569
  • Total likes: 503
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
    • Purple Dove House
Re: Stephen King
« Reply #14 on: August 02, 2014, 12:40:19 AM »
I read a few Kings, they were fun, but not really great as such. It, though, that was scary as hell. I also loved the bits that took place in the past, that sort of writing he does really well. I tried The Gunslinger, but just couldn't get into it. I think we have to thank him for Under the Dome, because that's so incredibly awful that it's actually one of the funniest things on TV.
I will expand your TBR pile.

http://purpledovehouse.blogspot.com

 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
32 Replies
8914 Views
Last post August 29, 2011, 09:11:51 AM
by pornokitsch
0 Replies
2032 Views
Last post November 23, 2014, 08:11:23 PM
by Arry
0 Replies
548 Views
Last post May 04, 2015, 07:33:30 AM
by RonPrice
5 Replies
760 Views
Last post July 16, 2016, 08:51:28 PM
by treadmikeway
10 Replies
430 Views
Last post November 02, 2016, 11:25:37 PM
by The Gem Cutter