Sunday, January 30, 2011

'Salem's Lot | by: Stephen King

This is for my participation in the 2011 Stephen King Reading Challenge, hosted by Book Chick City!

Jerusalem's Lot, or 'salem's Lot, is a very small town, and it already has secrets. Ben Mears has come back to face the demons of his past in the Lot once and for all, thinking that he can chase them away. Perhaps he could have, but the Lot has a couple of new strange visitors. Ben came at the worst possible time, for these new inhabitants are about to release something that could change the lives of the town's entire population with the evil they brought.

The story of Ben Mears is not the only story told in 'Salem's Lot, a classic tale of vampires, they way they've originally been told.

Well, before I even cracked this one open I knew I was in for some very good, descriptive writing; It is Stephen King, after all. At times it felt a little ramblesome, making it tedious, but it was generally impeccable. Another thing he knows well is character development, which is just as evident in 'Salem's Lot as it is in any other book that he's written, and that's saying something, considering that he writes about so many different characters in this novel alone. Not all of them were likeable, but that's life. He gives us background information on each person, so we really know them on just about every level. However, I didn't always see the point in in getting to know some characters, like Reggie and his family, as well as Sandy's family. But most of all, Dud. What was his purpose? Just sharing a bit of his story? It's like they barely mattered in the end, if they did at all.

As far as characters that I believed did matter, Mark was definately my favorite from this novel. He's a smart, strong kid, and I felt bad for him. Why did he have to be in this situation, defending his life, attempting to save others, and figuring out how to handle the town vampires? Just because he's smart?

The beginning was very difficult for me to digest, but I guess it's meant to be that way so the ending isn't spoiled. I just wish it was more understandable in its mystery. Other than that, Stephen King's descriptions always succeeded in letting me know what occurred in this plot, which could be a bit boring, but as I read, it became much more fascinating.

With that being said, most of the action is saved till the end, but it can be a long haul until then. This book was created merely for entertainment, and lives to that standard with suspenseful climatic points that increases until the final page. I think the ending is quite interesting, leaving room for imagination, but it's not like it's a cliffhanger.

'Salem's Lot had a very classic vampire feel to it, since the vampires were depicted as they were in classics such as Dracula. They were not glorified in any way, they were evil beings that manipulated people into letting them enter their house and deserved to have a stake through their hearts. I found this interesting. Perhaps this is because I did not read all of Dracula or other famous vampire classics (I mean the ones that aren't Twilight), but I was surprised to see that vampires were handled much like demons. They feared crucifixes and seemed to be quite satanic.

It didn't do too much for me, well, it was okay (that's why it's kind of hard to explain how I feel about it), but 'Salem's Lot will at least interest fans of early vampire depictions as well as fans of Stephen King like myself. It was an enjoyable, entertaining read overall; I liked it.

3/5 Stars

1 comment:

  1. This was definitely not one of my favorite Stephen King novels, but it was the first one I ever read. I haven't read that many of his novels and I am actually kind of in the process of choosing my next one, do you have any favorites?