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Salem's Lot Paperback – October 1, 2000
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Kirkus Reviews A super exorcism...tremendous. -- Review
About the Author
Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. His recent novel 11/22/63 was named a top ten book of 2011 by The New York Times Book Review and won the Los Angeles Times Prize. He is the recipient of the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. He lives in Bangor, Maine, with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.
Top customer reviews
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With Twilight, Vampire Diaries, and all these romantic, obnoxious, poorly acted vampire movies and shows out, I couldn't imagine that a book about vampires could possibly be anything but lame.
Holy moly was I wrong. Absolutely terrifying. It goes from "fun spooky" to "swear out loud terrifying" about midway through.
If you love King, this is right up your alley. Obviously a classic book. Made me afraid to look out the window at night. NEVER thought I'd find vampires scary.
It's still not my favorite Stephen King book - and I've read them all. But it is much better than I remembered. It's a hefty tome like most of King's offerings and I did feel that it was repetitive and too wordy in spots.
But as far as vampire books go, it's truly top of the line. You aren't going to find blood, guts and gore like modern day vampire tales. There are a few stomach-roiling moments but King mainly depends on his superior storytelling abilities to let the reader imagine the terrifying happenings in 'salem's Lot.
The book is suspenseful and scary yet filled with ordinary people trying to overcome extraordinary circumstances.
I enjoyed most of the characters, especially Ben and Mark. They were vividly drawn and I felt I would know them if I ever met them - and even call them friends.
A couple of negatives based on this illustrated edition:
There were very few pictures in the book, especially for a book of this length. And the pictures are very small in the Kindle edition.
There was a formatting issue about halfway through the book that garbled up about 50 pages of the book. It was barely readable - and annoying.
I did enjoy the two short stories that were part of this edition - ONE FOR THE ROAD and JERUSALEM'S LOT. And I especially enjoyed the deleted scenes at the end of the book.
So, all in all, I'm glad I re-read this book. Will I read it again someday in the future like I do many of Stephen King's books? Probably not.
The group of “heroes” is very diverse and even though not necessarily connected in their everyday lives their interactions do not seem forced or unauthentic. The character of Mark Petrie is just so adorable you want to wrap him in your arms and protect him from the evil. Matt Burke is an interesting character when compared to Mark Petrie. Mark Petrie is a child and is immediately accepting of the reality surrounding them as is Matt Burke who is a 60-something school teacher. Matt’s lack of resistance to the idea of evil is very refreshing and gives his relationship with Mark Petrie a nice twist. Dr. Cody is a very logical and scientific person yet he also has enough respect for the intelligence of the others in the group. The main character in the book is Ben Mears and he is a nice normal guy caught up in something unexplainable. Mr. King takes this into consideration as he walks us through Ben’s emotions and actions which are very true to his character. The reader feels each part of Ben’s struggle in their own gut and is rooting for him as soon as he drives into Salem’s Lot.
Ron McLarty did a fabulous job on the narration. His ability to convey the tension, the creepiness and the fear of the characters was phenomenal. I could really get into and root for the characters and I feel Mr. McLarty deserves as much of the praise as does Mr. King.
The prologue by Stephen King was good but I found his elevating of the Ben Mears’ character to hero status over the other characters was not correct. It did not do the other strong heroic characters in the book enough justice.