Book Review: Carrie by Stephen King

Carrie.jpgTitle: Carrie
Author: Stephen King
Series: None
Publication Date: April 5, 1974
Genres: Fiction > Horror
My Rating: ★★★☆☆
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Carrie knew she should not use the terrifying power she possessed… But one night at her senior prom, Carrie was scorned and humiliated just one time too many, and in a fit of uncontrollable fury, she turned her clandestine game into a weapon of horror and destruction…

Overview:

Seventeen-year-old Carrie White has spent her life living in fear of her fanatically religious and abusive mother, and her ignorance and innocence make her a target for her high school peers. Carrie has latent telekinetic abilities that she has not completely explored until the bullying reaches a crescendo on prom night and things begin to explode…literally.

I read this book for the first time in 2011 and I gave it 5 stars. This time around, I was debating whether to give it 3 stars or 4. For some reason, I didn’t enjoy it as much the second time around.

This review contains no spoilers.

Good:

  • I enjoyed the way this story was broken up into the typical third-person narrative and excerpts from written accounts and police reports of the victims/survivors of “The Black Prom.”
  • I liked Carrie’s character and empathized with her struggles. It was sad to see someone who could be so bright and full of life completely beaten down by her damaged mother.
  • This was one of King’s shorter works, which meant that he had less time to go into detail about things that don’t matter like he is apt to do.

Bad:

  • I found it hard to connect with Carrie, and because she was the protagonist (or antagonist), this was problematic. I get why she had the problems that she had, but I felt like she took things a bit too far, and I just wasn’t on her side by the end of the book. I’m not sure that I was supposed to be, but I wasn’t even able to sympathize with her anymore.
  • I’m not sure if this is really a negative thing or not, but I definitely wouldn’t say that this book was exactly scary, even though it’s technically in the horror genre. So just keep that in mind if that’s something you’re looking for. To me, it was more of a tragically sad story of the effects of emotional abuse and bullying.

Final Thoughts:

I’m not sure why I didn’t enjoy this book as much the second time around — maybe because it wasn’t as classically scary as other King books are that I’ve read more recently.


 Which Stephen King book should I read next?

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