Stephen King: Do I Like Him?

I’ve had this weird back and forth with Stephen King since I found out about him when I was a little Backstreet Boys obsessed teenie bopper in 4th grade.

Yes, I’m dating myself.

As a youngster, I was willing to read everything. Nothing was off limits. And I loved plowing through books that were supposedly above my reading limit. Or topics that were off limits.

Clearly, I was a regular book rebel. In my own delusions.

Enter: my first Stephen King. The King of suspense horror. The renowned bestseller.

Almost every single writer loves him. Readers obviously do…and yet…I have yet to find my beloved King book that makes me “get it”.

What is the secret sauce? Why do people do gaga for him?

My first foray was fourth grade classic, Salem’s Lot. It was vampires. I was a teenage girl. It was a no-brainer.

But I didn’t like it?

The writing was too dense. For me, the suspense wasn’t there. I wasn’t connected to anything and there was nothing that drove me forward to get answers.

I stopped reading at page 132. I never picked it back up again.

Would older me have appreciated it more? Did I just jump into something that was too much for me to handle?

My second sampling of King was The Shining. I’ve seen the movie a million times, so I thought maybe the book would be my speed.

Again. Dense writing. Didn’t pull me into the story. I had no kind of connection.

There was much defeat. At this point, I was past college age, why couldn’t I figure out the mastery of this author that everyone adored? Was I broken as a reader?

I had read and loved On Writing, because of course, I’m a writer. That was great.

But I was totally moot on the fiction front. Hmph.

So did I give up? Um, no. I’m stubborn. No I did not give up.

I trusted BookTuber Katie Colsen, instead. Because her book recc’s are gold.

And I picked up Misery.

Misery absolutely changed the game for me. The light parted and the Goddesses sung down from above and I “got it”. Finally. I was in the game. King was a winner.

I loved this book so much, so very much, I re-read it right after I was done reading it for the first time.

The tension. The dwindling psychosis. The mania.

The sheer beauty of this book. Ugh. I could go on forever. This book captured me in all the ways I wished his former books would have done. This is going on my re-read shelf for once a year reading.

Do I like Stephen King?

I like one book so far. But I’m obsessed with it.

Will I try more of them?

Yup, but I’m going to try to keep to his newer works or books that are similar to Misery in there themes and creep factor. I want that ookie, spooky shiver down my spine.

I’ll keep you posted on my journey!

Keep Reading Book Fam,


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