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King's darkest, scariest work yet

Discussion in 'Revival' started by fushingfeef, Sep 21, 2015.

  1. fushingfeef

    fushingfeef Uber-in-waiting

    In my opinion this was King's darkest, most horrific, disturbing work yet. Made me think of how dark Pet Sematary was, but this one was even scarier because this is something could that could happen to all of us one day...no one really knows, do they?

    Anyway, as much as I've loved King's non-scary stuff over the years, it was great seeing him show us that he truly still is the master of horror.

    GNTLGNT The idiot is IN

    ...I still say Sematary is the bleakest, but this novel has it's moments....
  3. Maskins

    Maskins Well-Known Member

    Agree on both - Pet Semetary has the horror element of losing a loved family member while Revival deals with what happens to them and us after death. I think they are very similar structure wise, at least in the ending reveal.
    Neesy, jchanic, AchtungBaby and 4 others like this.
  4. stacy270

    stacy270 Keep On Floatin' On

    I loved Revival.It has become my 3rd favorite King book.People seem to either love it or hate it.What's not to love? Even if you hate the whole book doesn't the ending make up for it? It may be my favorite King ending of all books but I have forgotten much of what I have read so sometime here during my reread I might change my opinion but no matter what I will always think the ending of Revival is spectacular!
  5. Maskins

    Maskins Well-Known Member

    Agree - it is now very very high on my list of favourties. What an ending!
  6. 80sFan

    80sFan Just one more chapter...

    I'm the opposite of most: I enjoyed most of the book very much. Didn't like the ending at all. I wasn't scared, more like "where did THAT come from?!?"
  7. Maskins

    Maskins Well-Known Member

    Defo a love or hate ending. I must add that I read the ending in a dark room of an old house with just a small lamp as I was staying at a relatives farm house.

    Not that I was scared at all.
    mal, rudiroo, stacy270 and 5 others like this.
  8. carrie's younger brother

    carrie's younger brother Well-Known Member

    Yes, the ending was a HUGE let down for me. At the time of the initial publication of this book when many of us were reading it and posting, I got a little carried away with how disappointed I was with the ending (even though I really didn't care for the rest of the book, either). I just couldn't believe it was freakin'

    Giant ants!!!!!Oh, Please!!!
    Doc Creed, stacy270, lowman and 6 others like this.
  9. Maskins

    Maskins Well-Known Member

    I wasn't bothered by the Ants aspect of it as I saw them as a visualisation of eternal beings feeding and toruring our souls for eternity - that the afterlife was in fact and eternal hell for everyone. That gave me the proverbial willies.
    stacy270, Neesy, AchtungBaby and 5 others like this.
  10. 80sFan

    80sFan Just one more chapter...

    Totally agree!
    Doc Creed, stacy270, Neesy and 3 others like this.
  11. carrie's younger brother

    carrie's younger brother Well-Known Member

    I respect that, really I do. But they were still freakin' giant ants!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

    I can't disassociate all these types of corny images from that ending. Sorry. No matter how hard I try to think the way you do, I still come back to images like this.
    Doc Creed, Neesy, AchtungBaby and 4 others like this.
  12. 80sFan

    80sFan Just one more chapter...

    Don't get me wrong, it IS a scary thought. Horrifying, in fact. I just felt like the ending didn't "go" with the rest of the story.
    Sorry, I don't know if I'm explaining that properly.
    Doc Creed, stacy270, Neesy and 5 others like this.
  13. carrie's younger brother

    carrie's younger brother Well-Known Member

    I get you. You're explaining yourself just fine. :kiwi-fruit:
    Doc Creed, stacy270, Neesy and 3 others like this.
  14. Maskins

    Maskins Well-Known Member

    I guess I have a problem with ants, evern since I was told as a youngster that I had ants in my pants (it was an itch).
  15. Maskins

    Maskins Well-Known Member

    No not at all, it is very jarring and kind of out of keeping with the rest of the story so I completely get you. I think it is one of those points that gels with you or not.
    stacy270, Neesy, AchtungBaby and 3 others like this.
  16. skimom2

    skimom2 Just moseyin' through...

    I'm with you. Didn't love or hate the book, but it was pretty good until the end. I think that particular thing is a phobic touch point: either it's going to creep you out entirely or it will throw you right out of suspension of disbelief because it's laughable to you. He gambled. It works for some, not for others; every book is a crapshoot, but not every author is willing to go all in on a risky bet.
    Doc Creed, stacy270, Neesy and 4 others like this.
  17. Randolph Carter

    Randolph Carter Active Member

    I agree with the original post, although it took me the whole book to get to that point. I was interested the whole way, and mildly creeped out by some of the dreams, but found it to be almost a conventional lifestory novel. But then the ending hit, and all the build up was worth it.

    To me it was so scary because it seemed like there is no hope. In a lot of his works, there is a good force working against evil- the Turtle in It, God in the Stand, or just the individual powers in The Shining and Dr. Sleep. Or in more bleak stories, like Pet Sematary, there's a bit of moralism in there-you bring the evil on yourself by meddling where you shouldn't have. But there's none of that in Revival. There's not even no hope, there's a kind of negative hope, as he saw the horror that awaits us (if his vision was true, I have another post planned on that...). For the protagonist to end with no hope forever, to me, was terrifying.
    stacy270, Neesy, jchanic and 4 others like this.
  18. Pucker

    Pucker We all have it coming, kid

    Well . . . I suppose you could say that the "horror" in Pet Semetary is internal. That is to say, the characters create the horror by making use of the cemetery, even though they know they shouldn't. The darkness at the end of Revival might seem more base, simply because the implication is that it is inevitable. It's outside us and it's waiting for us and there's nothing we can do about it (although I seem to recall some speculation that the vision could somehow have been some kind of psychic "mirage" and not necessarily "fate" -- I'll have to go back and look at it).

    Louis Creed keeps getting something he doesn't want from the monkey's paw, but at the end of that story, he still hasn't lost his faith that somehow he can "get it right next time." To me, that's a much more fundamental horror. If I were to discover, incontrovertibly, that the Jesus people were right and I'm going to burn for my sins, that would bother me exactly to the extent of . . . say . . . losing at a game I hadn't yet learned how to play. But making the same mistake over and over and over again, and cheerfully telling yourself that it will all work out okay in the end (something I know a little bit about) . . . well . . . that is orders of magnitude worse.
    Brian's Twinner, GNTLGNT, mal and 3 others like this.
  19. AchtungBaby

    AchtungBaby Well-Known Member

    I agree with the OP. File Revival away with Pet Sematary, Cujo, The Dark Half, FDNS, et cetera.
  20. Randolph Carter

    Randolph Carter Active Member

    Interesting. So you think it's scarier to picture a situation in which someone willingly makes themselves endure horror, possibly for what seem like good reasons (Pet Sematary) than one in which someone will have to endure the horror no matter what? I can see what you're saying there, although for me it's always been the reverse--I'm usually slightly reassured by scary stories where I could envision a way for the protagonist to avoid the horrors they faced. Although I am a religious person, so that might color my views a bit, as I tend not to find existentialism uplifting.

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