Review: It by Stephen King

It by Stephen King

Genre: Horror

img_4753 In many ways Derry, Maine was a typical small town. Derry was quiet, familiar, and predictable for all the adults who lived there. But..for the children of Derry, the town was horribly different. If the children didn’t actually see terrible things, they definitely felt something was wrong. That something was IT and IT lurked and hid in the storm sewers, in the drains, in the abandoned houses, under bridges….biding it’s time and waiting. Waiting until the time was right to take form in the shape of the children’s worst nightmares, their darkest fears….hunting, taunting, seizing and killing them.

Seven unlikely childhood friends, affectionately self titled “The Losers Club”, see IT savaging their town, their community, and their family members. Mike, Bill, Ben, Eddie, Richie, Stan, and Beverly understand that the adults in their town can’t do much to stop IT. They understand that children hold both a certain temptation as well as a certain power over IT. But now, 27 years have passed and the children have grown up, moved away and moved on from the town of Derry. But IT hasn’t moved on. When history starts repeating itself and children start disappearing again, the members of The Losers Club find themselves compelled to return home. They must once again confront IT…and the horrors and nightmares that were a very real part of their childhood past have suddenly become a very real part of their present.

“Maybe there aren’t any such things as good friends or bad friends – maybe there are just friends, people who stand by you when you’re hurt and who help you feel not so lonely. Maybe they’re always worth being scared for, and hoping for, and living for. Maybe worth dying for too, if that’s what has to be. No good friends. No bad friends. Only people you want, need to be with; people who build their houses in your heart.”

This was a reread for me. I first read IT many many years ago…I think I was around 15 or 16 years old the first time I read this book. At that age, my obsession first began with Stephen King and I read quite a few of his books. I’m slowly working my way through rereading most of them, as well as others that I haven’t previously read. When I was a teenager reading this book for the first time, I really loved it…I loved the way it terrified me and hooked me in immediately. But I honestly feel like I got so much more out of it now as an adult. I remember thinking that IT was about a killer clown named Pennywise who terrorized a group of kids one summer. And it is…..but IT is about so much more than just the clown. If you’ve seen the movie adaptation of this book, Pennywise has a much larger part of the story in the movie than he does in the book. Don’t get me wrong….the clown and the creepy balloons that pop up out of nowhere are definitely a strong part of the story. But, like most book/movie comparisons, the book is so much better because you just get so much more. IT is loooong….it’s 1180 pages, and in those pages, you get so much more than just a scary clown. IT is a story about evil, nightmares, our deepest fears, childhood innocence, friendship, believability and reality. The characters in this book are so incredibly well written and beautiful in their own way. The storyline of this masterpiece is one which has inspired so many other scary horror stories since it’s initial publication 30 years ago.

There were plenty of times in the almost 4 weeks that it took me to read this where I was genuinely creeped out and turning on all the lights as I walked through my quiet and dark house. And I absolutely LOVE that feeling! That feeling is what made me fall in love with King so many years ago. I love the feeling of being genuinely scared but knowing, in my head, that I am perfectly safe and sound in my own house. That being said….if you do not like being scared and you don’t like blood, gore, and guts…this is likely not the choice for you. Stephen King has plenty of great books that aren’t overly scary…he even has great scary /creepy books that aren’t overly bloody and gory. This just happens to be a book of his that is both scary and gory. In fact….I would say that this is likely the scariest book of his that I’ve read…I loved every minute of reading this one. IT is for sure in my top 3 Stephen King reads, only behind The Shinning and The Stand.

If you are a fan of reading the Horror genre and you haven’t yet read this one….it’s a definitely recommend from me. Don’t let the long length intimidate you, it’s a well paced long book and held my interest the entire time.

My Rating: 5/5 Stars



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