We’ve all at least heard of Stephen King, right? If not by his novels, by the film and TV adaptations of them. Films such as The Shawshank Redemption (which is one of my favorites), The Shining, Stand by Me, and Carrie. So, I was well aware of who Stephen King was years before I even decided to read one of his works.
Today, 21st of September, Stephen King’s birthday, and because of that, I have decided to revisit and rewrite my review of his horror novel, It.
It, by Stephen King
It tells the story of a group of friends that came together because they were all outsiders. Each one of them has their own conflicts, but when something strange starts tormenting them, they unite to try to fight it back. The years go by, the children grow up and go their separate ways, and they all try to forget what happened, but when it calls them back, they are forced to remember their childhood in Derry, Maine, their traumas and secrets, and the friendship that they once shared.
The heart of the book is the struggle that each child has to go through throughout the story and the friendship that is born out of their conflicts. My favorite character is Bill, the leader of the group, but none of the other friends feels like they could have been left out of the novel; they all have something to do, they all are important. There are several villains and antagonists besides the thing that haunts the children, which made the story and the heroes easier to identify with, despite the supernatural element.
“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.”
The book is almost 1400 pages long and I couldn’t put it down… until I had 350 pages left. At some point I felt that the story lost some of the magic that had kept me going non-stop, and what had been an incredible tale, became slow and bizarre (even by its own standards). Too long a story can sometimes have episodes that feel somewhat unnecessary. However, this did not last for long and the story quickly picked up again and had me on the edge of my seat for the rest of the book.
Before you read it, let me tell you: this book is nothing but trouble. It is the reason why I stayed up until three in the morning, why I almost missed my bus stops, why I now hate to walk near big sewers, and why I can’t stand clowns. This book is so much more than a horror novel. It made me scared, it made me laugh, cry, and, by the time I was done, it made me want to read it again.
“Drive away and try to keep smiling. Get a little rock and roll on the radio and go toward all the life there is with all the courage you can find and all the belief you can muster. Be true, be brave, stand. All the rest is darkness.”