- Published: 2008
- Number of pages: 668 pages
- Format: EPUB
- File Size: 1.84 MB
- Authors: Stephen King
#1 BESTSELLER • Ben Mears has returned to Jerusalem’s Lot in hopes that exploring the history of the Marsten House, an old mansion long the subject of rumor and speculation, will help him cast out his personal devils and provide inspiration for his new book. But when two young boys venture into the woods, and only one returns alive, Mears begins to realize that something sinister is at work.In fact, his hometown is under siege from forces of darkness far beyond his imagination. And only he, with a small group of allies, can hope to contain the evil that is growing within the borders of this small New England town.With this, his second novel, Stephen King established himself as an indisputable master of American horror, able to transform the old conceits of the genre into something fresh and all the more frightening for taking place in a familiar, idyllic locale.
Reviews from Amazon users which were colected at the time this book was published on the website:
⭐I read this book as a kid and it scared the beejesus out of me. I read it again recently as an adult and it was a different experience alltogether. If you arent a King fan or are, if horror is your thing or its not, here are 3 reasons why this is still a great bookk:1. Its not what you might expect. Yes, its about vampires visiting a small town and good vs Evil (capital “E”), but Salems lot is a soap opra, with vivid characters only King can create and vignettes of life in a small town that will make you feel nostalgic and disgusted at the same time. They beat their children, cheat on their husbands, drink and bully. Yet its hard to pin them on a good vs bad board, there are shades of grey with everyone you meet. This town is Anytown USA, more a charcter than a setting and you realize the evil man can do is more destructive to society than a thousand year old vampire.2. It is King at his finest – the writing, the transitions and use of the third person narrative makes the story come alive – its a slow build I admit but by the time the bodies start dropping King makes you care in a way most horror novels dont bother to. You feel for the Glicks, you root for the alcoholic priest trying to reclaim enough faith to battle the dark one and you are happy for Dud in his new life. King will do this again in the Stand and in It, but once you read SL you realize hes sampling from his earlier works and no other book will make you laugh cry and turn on the lights like this one will. The genuis of starting the book with the tall man and boy in Mexico is you kind of know whats going to happen (much like a Columbo episode where you see the murder up front), but it raises so many questions you simply have to hang on.3. Its the best kind of horror story – it follows the rules and tells classic tale. Straker and Barlow may be the villans but they arent blood thirsty monsters either – they are true to their nature. A vampire kils and a watchdog protects. In one seen where Straker does something awful, King takes the time to tell us about the look on his face which enlightens the reader about his motivation. They follow all the vampire rules – sunlight and crosses and of course the need for an invitation (in fact they were invited to the town by Marsten). They arent invincible foes but they are formidable ones. And its the townspeople that drive the action and turn SL into an apocalypse.This is a rich story full of great themes about society, the power of faith, men vs boys (my favorite chapter is the inner monologue Mark Petrie has after a close call where he muses about how adult fears are nothing compared to what a child dels with under the bed at night) and even love and salvation. Read it and decide for yourself if this is a horror novel or a novel about the horrorz of man.
⭐I enjoyed Salem’s Lot. Prior to this novel, I read Carrie which was my first by King. I liked this story, a writer staying in a boarding house to write a book about a haunted house from his childhood that continued to bother him even in his adulthood. A group coming together to kill these creatures infesting the town. The witty English teacher/ Dr. Van Helsing character. Parts if it made me laugh in bed while reading, others creeped me out… especially the image of these child vampires overcoming the town’s crotchety bus driver after baiting him onto the bus in the middle of the night. It definitely kept me engaged and I’m looking forward to reading a few more of King’s books. In the afterword, King refers to Salem’s Lot as an American vampire tale… it was then I remembered thumbing through the pages one of my brother’s comic books with the same title and how King contributed to the writing of it. Good read.
⭐I’ll start with a confession: I read this because of the Dark Tower series. That said, my first King book I read was The Stand, and I was hooked. I starting the Dark Tower series shortly thereafter, and found myself wanting to know more about Father Callahan, so I jumped to Salem’s Lot.Slight spoiler alert. If you’re looking for a story about Father Callahan, or are trying to gleam some more information on the Dark Tower, I think you’ll be disappointed. The Father is definitely in the book, and there’s more detail surrounding his ordeal in The ‘Lot, but the Dark Tower does a pretty good job of explaining it. So if you’re coming at it from that angle, you might be disappointed. All of that said, this is a great book. It was on my short list to read anyway, I just jumped on it sooner rather than later.
⭐‘Salem’s Lot is Stephen King’s reimagination of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, setting the story in a small 1970s New England town called Jerusalem’s (‘Salem’s) Lot. The book begins much like Stoker’s classic tale, with a lawyer arranging the purchase of the town’s most notorious mansion by a mysterious man named Straker and his unseen partner, Barlow. When the lawyer’s lackeys are tasked with delivering a large crate – one big enough to hold a coffin – to the mansion, the stage is set. The book is an utterly suspenseful read, and I tore through all 668 pages. King apparently considers ‘Salem’s Lot his favorite novel. I might not share the same view, given my love for The Stand and the Gunslinger series, particularly Wizard and Glass. But whether or not it’s King’s best, ‘Salem’s Lot is one hell of a book by one of the most talented novelists of our time.
⭐Salem’s Lot by the legendary Stephen King is genuinely not only one of his greatest novels of all-time but is a horror masterpiece! The way he builds Jerusalem’s Lot piece by piece and all its interesting characters, you’ll be hooked immediately from the start. I could not put this book down and took my time reading it as it’s that immersive.As ‘Salem’s Lot unfolds, whether you read it many moons ago or are just reading it for the first time, the way King is able to keep you on the edge of your seat is surreal. He set the tone for his incredible writing career back in 1975 when this was originally published and decades later, it still holds up. As a matter of fact, many readers will tell you it’s the best novel he’s ever written, yes, even scarier than “It”. I’ve read many horror novels in my life and can tell you that ‘Salem’s Lot is up there in the “best of the best” category without even thinking about it twice.This is 5/5 stars in my book and is something I’d recommend to anyone that either loves King’s work or is a fan of horror. If you’re into reading novels about vampires but written in a way that stands out from anything else, ‘Salem’s Lot is for you. Just make sure to leave the lights on…
⭐OK.At the time of writing (Oct 2019), I’m forty-seven.Remember that number, OK?Right, the book: ‘Salem’s Lot.In no particular order.It started slowly. Very slowly. It crawled. But, round about 15%(Yes, I read on a Kindle so talk about % now rather than page numbers…)of the way in, I realised that the crawling plot had, in fact, been tying loose knots around my imagination. And when the first few people disappeared, those knots started tightening. That didn’t stop until the end of the novel. And that’s the thing – no one and nothing is sacred in this story. From the initial, chilling sacrifice to the Lord of Flies to the final show down. People drop like, well, flies, I guess. They are there and then they’re gone.The problem is, most of these people come back. After dark. And these are not nice vampires. They don’t sparkle. They don’t come armed with comedy accents and cliches and dress in cloaks. They are unpleasant and, in some cases, tragic. But the nastiness doesn’t stop there. There’s a house – The Marsten House. Its cellar is almost as scary as some of the monsters. As the author says in the foreword: ‘it’s one of the scary ones.’But, outside of Barlow and his vampires, and the Marsten House and its cellar, and the superb depictions of some very messed up people there were a few things that jarred.1 – the vast number of peripheral characters was hard to follow. We’re talking about a town’s worth. Many appear and disappear then reappear and I wasn’t always sure who was who. Are you the useless cop? The horny (pervy) dump manager? The wifebeater. And so on…2 – the ending was over too quickly. The set up to the final moments were chillingly good, but the final resolution? Over too soon. Maybe it’s better that way rather than turning the last pages into a B-movie gore schlock fest?3 – where are the rats? They exist in the deleted scenes at the end of the book but were culled from the finished version. I’d have preferred they were kept as some of those scenes are terrifying.All in all, though, this is another one of those books where I found myself wondering why I had never read it before.So. Back to my age. You remember how old I am, right? Go check it you’ve forgotten. I’ll wait.Back already?OK.I read the bulk of this book whilst staying in a largish flat in London. I was on my own. Reading late in the evening. Suffering from insomnia. One night – I think it was near the end of the book when things had really gone belly up for the inhabitants of the Lot – I couldn’t sleep. Not because of my insomnia, but because a doubt had crept up on me, rat-like, whiskers tickling the toes of my imagination. Who, or what, was in the other rooms in the flat? I was there on my own, right? Of course I was. Just me. No one else. Not a soul. Only little old me…Yup.A forty-seven year old man got out of bed to check there were no monsters in the closet, under the bed, in the other rooms or hiding on the landing.Are you laughing at me?You should be…Now go read the book. It’s scarily good.
⭐This might be a long book but my goodness is it worth the read. I’ve gone through a phase of reading some classic horror (Frankenstein, The Exorcist and Dracula), and this is easily the pick of the lot.Stephen King needs no introduction and this book highlights why he is one of the best-selling writers alive. His books read like a movie, you can imagine and picture every detail and visualise the story in your head – yes almost everyone does this with any fiction book they read but with King there is a level of visualisation and detail that is rarely found – he is a true storyteller.The book itself is about a writer who returns to Salem’s Lot after many years to write a book. He learns on arrival that the creepy, empty house he was hoping to rent (this house has a strong connection to an episode during the writer’s childhood), has already been let to two mysterious men. What pursues is a story of residents that suddenly go missing, people seemingly coming back from the dead and what seems to be a town silently becoming overrun by a growing group of vampires and a plan by remaining residents to stop them.One of the highlights of the book is the short story ‘One For The Road’ at the end. This short story was even more creepy than Salem’s Lot and a fantastic end to the read. I had read Dracula before this and must confess that I found it slightly disappointing. Whilst the book has a very eerie vibe, the characters are not particularly likeable and the narrative can get bland at times. Salem’s Lot is of course completely different to Dracula but if you are looking for a great horror/vampire book then you must purchase this!
⭐As an exercise in building tension and fear, this novel succeeds. Taking Stoker’s Dracula as a template, King’s approach is intriguing. We have a scary (haunted?) house, we have strangers in town and we have one newcomer, bound by his past, returning to the scene of his mental horror.It’s hardly a spoiler to write that this is a vampire novel. The point is that it’s more than that.A sleepy New England town is subject to an attack, a virus. The question is who can see this and try and resist? In the end it is rather tortured writer and a young boy, who knows fear but has read enough stories to conquer that fear. This village of the damned plays out as a gradual death of a functioning American community. The New England setting suggests that the virus is both old and new.The difficulty faced by the intrepid band of vampire hunters becomes clear only gradually. The rate at which the evil spreads is beyond their joint efforts to eradicate it. And so the novel reaches the only conclusion possible, fixated on place and terror. The whole town is cursed and even the purification wrought by the protagonists cannot remove the horror permanently.So? If you haven’t read this Stephen King classic, read it now – you’re in for a treat. For those who read it years ago and have lost touch; there are two connected short stories which complement the book.Yes, it’s scary. But so is real life. Read and digest. Understand how one plague can destroy a community.
⭐This book was advertised as a hard back copy of Salem’s Lot, however what it actually appeared to be was a cheaply printed paperback with a very dubious hard cover. Remember the dodgy CD’s or video cassettes you could buy from the bloke in the pub that looked like the jacket cover had been homemade on his printer, well this book was from the same stable…. Yes is arrived on time and was well packed and you could read it but the quality of the item for the price charged was tantamount to daylight robbery. Amazon, I am surprised at you!
⭐***Spoilers for general plot***Whilst this book isn’t strictly of the same vein, the zombie apocalypse genre should take lessons from King and Salem’s Lot.Starting off slowly and with an almost hokey premise (a sinister man of unknown motive moves into a sleepy town’s single, creepy, broken down house) the novel builds over time into a remarkably sinister, shocking and scary tale of a whole township being turned into blood-thirsty monsters by a vampire.The plot centres around a group of people, led by the protagonist (a man who grew up in the town, moved away and has now returned), who discover the truth early on and the excitement ratchets up over each page as sanity bleeds from their world and allies are devoured and turned by the terrible enemy.The pacing is perfect, the relationships believable and brilliant, the theme terrifying and the horror palpable – it’s well worth a read.
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