Thoughts on IT and the Genius of Stephen King

I have been a die-hard Stephen King fan for years. And when I say die-hard I mean anything but the scary stuff. So no Carrie, no ‘Salem’s Lot, no Cujo, and DEFINITELY no IT. I am such a baby when it comes to scary stuff. Ironic right?

Anyway, this summer Bec got me reading ‘Salem’s Lot, and it quickly jumped into the top 3 all-time favorite books for me (American Gods by Neil Gaiman being number one and Good Omens by Neil Gaiman being number two). That book blew my mind. It was incredible! It was actually one of the first books that had me wanting to write a review (and made me start this blog!). Check out the review here.

With that said, I then listened to Lisey’s Story which was much more weird than scary. I still need to finish a review on that one because it is just so much to wrap your head around! But over Halloween, I had a bout of temporary insanity and downloaded IT. There are homicidal clowns with sharp pointy teeth, shapeshifting, and scariest of all Derry, Maine. What could possibly go wrong?

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I primarily listen to audiobooks rather than read print, and the narrator on this one is something else. Steven Weber breathes a little bit TOO much life into these characters and makes them slide into your brain in a way that makes it all too real. His Pennywise voice is absolutely horrifying. This is not the real terror of the history though.

The thing about King is he has a remarkable grip on the human psyche. His actual human characters are infinitely scarier than his “creatures.” Big Jim Renny in Under the Dome is one of the most terrifically messed up characters ever written, and it is GENIUS. Pennywise in IT is terrifying no doubt about it, but the characters that make the hair on the back of my neck stand up are Bev’s abusive husband, Henry the school bully, and the men who murdered an innocent man at the beginning of the book because he was gay.

I am about 2/3 of the way through the book, and the storylines are not even converging yet, but I have so much anxiety for all of the different things that are in motion. It is building to this giant climax, and I can feel the earth shaking beneath me as the audiobook rolls on.

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