Book recommendation: It, by Stephen King


I’m not a big fan of horror movies; they tend to put me too on-edge, make me too jumpy. And yet, I’m somehow pulled to them. I want to know what they’re about and how they turn out. Especially if they have a really great trailer.

IT is one of the most recent examples. The trailers look amazing, tempting me to watch the full movie. I don’t fully trust myself to do so, however. So instead, I re-read the book, written by Stephen King.

From the outside, Derry looks like any other small town. Beneath the streets, however, lurks an evil presence that comes out to feed every 26 to 28 years. Nobody is willing to admit it’s there, except for seven young friends who are determined to destroy it.

I don’t remember when, exactly, I first read It, just that it was years ago. Long enough ago that, when the movie trailers prompted me to think back on the novel, I couldn’t remember the details of what happened. This, of course, pushed me to read it again.

If you’re in the same boat, or if you’ve never read It, I encourage you to open a copy and start reading. Those first few pages will tell you what to expect. They foreshadow a lot: the type of horror you’ll find, the events, the motivation of the characters. They pull you in while making you think you’re ready for what’s coming. But even all of that foreshadowing can’t fully prepare you for what you’re about to read.

See, there’s a lot of detail in the novel–good detail, the type that paints a vivid picture in your mind. Yes, sometimes it’s almost a bit too vivid, and you end up imagining more than you would prefer. Mostly, though, it makes the novel more engrossing.

Goodreads summary

To the children, the town was their whole world. To the adults, knowing better, Derry, Maine was just their home town: familiar, well-ordered for the most part. A good place to live.

It was the children who saw – and felt – what made Derry so horribly different. In the storm drains, in the sewers, IT lurked, taking on the shape of every nightmare, each one’s deepest dread. Sometimes IT reached up, seizing, tearing, killing . . .

The adults, knowing better, knew nothing.

Time passed and the children grew up, moved away. The horror of IT was deep-buried, wrapped in forgetfulness. Until they were called back, once more to confront IT as IT stirred and coiled in the sullen depths of their memories, reaching up again to make their past nightmares a terrible present reality.

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