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Why Salems Lot is the scariest book of Stephen King

Discussion in ''Salem's Lot' started by John13, Sep 25, 2016.

  1. John13

    John13 Active Member

    Warning:NOT the best but the scariest. In fact i think that the main characters are rather underdeveloped. But contrary to other books, in this the focus is on the supernatural and not on creating convincing characters. With that said, i think the idea of a family member becoming a vampire is one of the scariest things i can imagine. Surely Barlow is very scary himself but the most heart breaking scenes are those when dead family members come back to life and go and bite their relatives
    Michael Flagg, mjs9153, mal and 8 others like this.
  2. kingricefan

    kingricefan All-being, keeper of Space, Time & Dimension.

    'Salem's Lot was the very first King book I read (way back in the day when it was first released in paperback) and it's still my favorite. It's not the best written King book, but it sure packs a lot of scare in it. I grew up in a small town in western Pennsylvania and I knew people in real life that were exactly like the characters that Steve put in that book.
    mjs9153, mal, Brian's Twinner and 6 others like this.
  3. AchtungBaby

    AchtungBaby Well-Known Member

    'Salem's Lot is a scary book but, for me, not the scariest.
    mjs9153, mal, kingricefan and 4 others like this.
  4. Doc Creed

    Doc Creed Well-Known Member

    I enjoyed this book a lot, too. For me, Pet Sematary was the scariest.
    mjs9153, OldDarth, mal and 6 others like this.

    GNTLGNT The idiot is IN

    ....scariest?.....VERY subjective, given we all react differently to, in this case, written stimulus.....
    mjs9153, mal, kingricefan and 3 others like this.
  6. Rrty

    Rrty Well-Known Member

    Very interesting thread.

    It is really funny, because I think Lot is exceptionally well-written. Extremely poetic in certain sections (darkly poetic, I should say).

    As far as scary, yes, it can be (I remember the Marsten house scene scaring me when I first read it), but for me, King has written things that are more disturbing (e.g., when he describes realistic torture on characters).
  7. staropeace

    staropeace Richard Bachman's love child

    It was my first book by Stephen as well...........and still the scariest.
    mjs9153, mal, Doc Creed and 3 others like this.
  8. Coyo-T

    Coyo-T Well-Known Member

    I guess reading this one only recently has given me a different perspective than I might have had reading it a few decades ago- I think the "rise" of zombie movies has to some extent desensitized people to the idea of one day having to fight off undead kith and kin (I mean, a lot of these movies are even comedies...) I honestly just feel kind of sad- other than Callahan (whom I first met in The Dark Tower series, so I already knew what became of him after he exited _Salem's Lot's narrative) I really just want to know what happened to everyone, even the vampires. It's possible that I just need time to sort out my exact feelings toward this one- they're strong, but though I know I liked it I'm not exactly sure what they are yet.
    mjs9153, mal, king family fan and 2 others like this.

    GNTLGNT The idiot is IN

    ...Hiya![​IMG] ....
    mjs9153, mal, king family fan and 2 others like this.
  10. PennyHanscom

    PennyHanscom Member

    I read Salem's Lot in 30 hours or so and was my first King book. I liked it, but it seemed atmospherically scary compared to jump out. And since it was the middle of the summer, it didn't hit me THAT hard. Until I stayed up until midnight reading, and then the moment I turned the light out, a moth flew on my face. But definitely a chilling book I agree.
    mjs9153, Coyo-T, mal and 3 others like this.
  11. Doc Creed

    Doc Creed Well-Known Member

    Don't forget to lock your windows tonight, everyone.
    mjs9153, mal, kingricefan and 4 others like this.
  12. Mr. Cranky

    Mr. Cranky The Roosters are Number 1.

    When I first read it in 1979, I remember that scene. At the window, scary. I think the original mini-series still holds up well. Funny, back in 1983, I justed remembered, I was doing my HSC for the second time at the Technical College in Ultimo. A bunch of us were in the Sussex Street part of the building having lunch. I think it was an Macedonian Australian guy and we were talking and I said something about Salem's Lot, and he said something like, 'Man, have you read Pet Sematary?' And I read it about about a few days later.
    mjs9153, mal, kingricefan and 2 others like this.
  13. notebookgirl

    notebookgirl Well-Known Member

    "It" was scary for me. "Salem's Lot" wasn't as scary, but just had a magic to it. Dark magic, because it put you in a spell and made your heart go tap, tap. Also, it made me cry too (at one point). A beautifully written book that I am so thankful to have read!!
    Mr. Cranky, mjs9153, mal and 3 others like this.
  14. mal

    mal Well-Known Member

    I agree John 13. My first King book as well and I still consider it the scariest! All the best, mal.
    Zone D Dad, mjs9153, GNTLGNT and 2 others like this.

    GNTLGNT The idiot is IN

    ...it is a scary read, a marvelously scary read.....
    mjs9153, mal, Doc Creed and 1 other person like this.
  16. CYRUS

    CYRUS Well-Known Member

    I read this one a few years ago and I thought it one of the best vampire novels id ever read. :cool:
    mal, Coyo-T, mjs9153 and 2 others like this.
  17. ServantThirteen

    ServantThirteen Well-Known Member

    Just started this one last night. Ready to be scared.
    mal, Coyo-T, mjs9153 and 4 others like this.
  18. Zone D Dad

    Zone D Dad Well-Known Member

    Same here. I was a kid and home sick from school. Read it in 2 days - literally couldn't put the thing down. I re-read it about 3 years ago and it still holds up. It's definitely at the top of my favorites list. The Kindle version I bought also includes Jerusalem's Lot and One for the Road at the end, which is a nice touch.

    I still love the old Tobe Hooper adaptation too. Once in awhile it will pop up on Encore in its entirety. That's a drop-the-remote treat.
    mal, staropeace, Coyo-T and 5 others like this.
  19. grin willard

    grin willard Grin. Boasting a profile u could cut cheese with.

    I was about to say, "It was for me," and then I noticed Doc Creed's post mentioning Pet Cemetery, and for a sec I relived the terror of reading that book more than a decade ago. :) whew! Looking back it may well be the scariest thing I've ever read. But still, for you lurkers looking for a good fright, Salem's Lot is pretty scary. King makes you care about the characters and then you're halfway in the bag.
    mal, Doc Creed, kingricefan and 5 others like this.
  20. Doc Creed

    Doc Creed Well-Known Member

    I'm curious, what do you think is his scariest book? Like GNT said, we all react differently to different books but it's fun to see what everyone says.
    mal, GNTLGNT, kingricefan and 2 others like this.

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