This is one of those authors that I always end up talking about, mainly due to the fact that he’s just so damn popular. And I don’t get it? I’ve read a few of his books and I distinctly recall being immensely bored each time. I suppose it doesn’t help in the end that I’m not a fan of the horror or thriller genres, which ultimately leaves his books missing points from me even before I’ve started. But I just really don’t understand.
And this comes up at a time where everyone seems to be reading his new book Sleeping Beauties, which I’ve read the synopsis of and am not even slightly interested. I haven’t even enjoyed the movies I’ve seen that are based off his books. And so, again, I find myself wondering how is he so popular? I’ll say this much, King’s writing is superb. It’s his stories that I couldn’t care less about.
My introduction to this author came from my father, a man who doesn’t read but clearly had heard of Stephen King simply on account of how popular he was. My dad, who knew I loved reading at a very early age, was positive for some reason that I, at thirteen, would be ridiculously ecstatic to move to the same state that King lived in despite the fact that I had never read any of his books at the time. It would be only a few month’s later that my Uncle would lend me a copy of The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordan to read.
And I was just so bored.
Though, if I were to say anything good about this book here it would be that it does a brilliant job of depicting a real situation. Even so, I don’t know how much entertainment a person is meant to get out of reading 264 page book literally about a young girl walking through the woods and doing basically nothing else.
I suppose it’s possible to chalk this up to age, but I was reading books by Jim Butcher and Alexandre Dumas (among others I can’t recall off the top of my head) at the time (on my own, not for school or anything) and enjoying them, so I really don’t think that’s a fair thing to say. My reading level at thirteen was well above most others, just as it has been my entire life.
Fast forward three years and I was reading The Dark Tower series, as recommended to me by a friend. And again, I just didn’t like it? I can’t even pinpoint what it was that I didn’t like anymore, it’s been so long. I haven’t read a King book since. And perhaps it’s about time for me to roll back and give his books another try, since it’s been nine years since the last time I read one (though I almost picked up Under the Dome, but couldn’t bring myself to buy it since I was bitter about whole Michael Grant, Gone thing).
At the end of the day, I appreciate his writing and I think he writes exceptionally well from a language standpoint. But I just don’t understand the popularity. I mean…his stories are okay. They don’t stand out to me at all. Perhaps it’s the novelty? After all, It was very original despite my opinion that it was an entirely pointless plot. As for It, I watched the film, but have never read the book and therefore will leave my criticism to a minimum. There are things that are vastly different between movies and books 99% of the time. Then again, I don’t watch horror movies, either, for precisely the same reason.
Maybe it’s time to sit down with one of his books again and see if my mind changes at all. But I don’t know, I have a hard time seeing myself ever enjoying these sort of books. I guess we’ll see!
What do you think of Stephen King? In your opinion, his best book is…? Maybe I’ll start with one of those.
Happy reading, everyone!