'Salem's Lot

'Salem's Lot

Thousands of miles away from the small township of 'Salem's Lot, two terrified people, a man and a boy, still share the secrets of those clapboard houses and tree-lined streets. They must return to 'Salem's Lot for a final confrontation with the unspeakable evil that lives on in the town....

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Title:'Salem's Lot
Author:Stephen King
Rating:
Edition Language:English

'Salem's Lot Reviews

  • Mary

    I hate vampires. I hate them and I hate books about them. I hate the way they're romanticized and sexualized and just generally presented in modern fiction. That's why I loved this book. King doesn't shy away from the fact that vampires are creatures of horror and he presents them as such. They are vile, violent, and everywhere, and that's the way I like them.

    The characters pitted against them, particularly the priest, are compelling and almost too human to face the vampires. And, in the end, th

    I hate vampires. I hate them and I hate books about them. I hate the way they're romanticized and sexualized and just generally presented in modern fiction. That's why I loved this book. King doesn't shy away from the fact that vampires are creatures of horror and he presents them as such. They are vile, violent, and everywhere, and that's the way I like them.

    The characters pitted against them, particularly the priest, are compelling and almost too human to face the vampires. And, in the end, they don't actually triumph. They escape but that's about it. It's tragic and horrible and the perfect vampire book.

  •  Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)

    City folk have a distinct misconception about small towns. We tend to believe that they are tranquil and innocent. That the denizens are wholesome and full of family values. But, we don't see the hidden rot that lurks beneath the sleepy facade.

    Stephen King does a lot to shatter that myth with 'Salem's Lot. This a horror novel about a vampire who destroys a town from the inside out. This is a horror story about the darkness that we don't see clearly (or maybe we ignore) about our friends, familie

    City folk have a distinct misconception about small towns. We tend to believe that they are tranquil and innocent. That the denizens are wholesome and full of family values. But, we don't see the hidden rot that lurks beneath the sleepy facade.

    Stephen King does a lot to shatter that myth with 'Salem's Lot. This a horror novel about a vampire who destroys a town from the inside out. This is a horror story about the darkness that we don't see clearly (or maybe we ignore) about our friends, families, and neighbors.

    What was the most horrific part of this book for me? You're going to guess wrong. It wasn't the horror of the vampires. It was seeing a woman punch her ten month old baby in the face because he was crying. Yes, that bothered me more than any of the actual supernatural horror. I say to Mr. King that you know what fears lurk in our hearts. The dark is full of potential evil that can possess us, take over our bodies, and turn us into monsters. But, the truest monsters are the human ones. With this novel, Mr. King showed me both kinds of monsters.

    Do you believe that there are no true secrets in a small town? You'd be right if you said yes. You'd be equally right if you said no. The townspeople of 'Salem's Lot know a lot more than they want to know about their neighbors, but they overlook it, ignore it, sweep the sins under the rug until the rug starts to bulge in the middle, and it won't hold those secrets back.

    For example, 'Salem's Lot harbored an ex-mobster who had a penchant for devil worship. He lived in a scary house on the top of a hill, the Marsten House. It was a house that haunted Ben Mears after he went there as a nine year old on a dare. He went there, and saw something that was from his worst nightmares, but he believed even in his adulthood to be true. The evil that Hubie Marsten brought into existence never died. The house held it as a battery holds a charge. It was the perfect place for a vampire and his evil minion to set up shop in this little town.

    I read the introduction to this story with interest. I love knowing how an author came to craft his or her story. Mr. King was a fan of Bram Stoker's Dracula, and he wrote 'Salem's Lot as an unofficial homage to that classic vampire novel. In my inexpert opinion, I think he did a great job. I feel that Mr. Stoker would probably nod in approval, even if he didn't get all the modern references. Mr. King wrote his idea of a vampire story, and it holds his individual stamp on it. Yet, the aspects that make Dracula such an excellent vampire novel, at least to this vampire aficionado, are clearly represented. Mr. Barlow could give Count Dracula a real run for his money as far as being a completely evil, despicable, and formidable being. His minion, Straker, could give Renfield some lessons in evil. And Matt, Ben, Jimmy, Susan, Father Callahan, and Mark could compare notes with Van Helsing, Harker, Mina, Holmwood, and Quincy. But, if Mr. Stoker would forgive me, I think that Mr. King ramped up the fear level significantly, because his world is not sentimental and endowed with as many basically 'good' people. His world is full of flawed humanity who have really nasty proclivities, although I still feared for their safety and didn't want them to succumb to the evil of the vampire that infected this town.

    In this story, we learn about the heights and depths of the human condition. How a person can bounce back from despair, face his/her worst fears, and quite possibly wrap his mind around events that cannot be real to an empirical mind. We learn about what a person's limits are. Can you go into that house and do what needs to be done? Do you have the nerve? Or will you turn away and pretend it's not happening, as some members of this town do, for their own sanity? Can a thirteen- year-old boy show the bravery that a seventy-year-old man in the twilight of his life lacks? Can a non-believer trust in the symbols of a faith that held no relevance to him, in the face of an evil that defies scientific explanation? All these questions are explored in this story, with answers that might surprise you.

    I deliberately read 'Salem's Lot during the day, because it is quite, quite scary. Even still, I thought about a pair of red eyes haunting me in the night. Feared for the scratching of a lost loved one against my window pane as I tried to sleep at night. Some part of me hoped that I had not inadvertently invited the wrong person into my home. If that is what makes a successful vampire novel, I'd say Stephen King has succeeded in a big way.

  • Nataliya

    There was a time once when vampires were ruthless predators and not the misunderstood brooding and essentially harmless creatures. Ahhhh, good old scary times...

    Vampire stories have been around for a long time - after all, people love a good scare, and what is more terrifying than a monster showing up at night and sucking the life essence out of you? But leave it to Stephen King to turn the terror up a notch, add a whole new layer to it. How? Simply - using the winning formula that he continues

    There was a time once when vampires were ruthless predators and not the misunderstood brooding and essentially harmless creatures. Ahhhh, good old scary times...

    Vampire stories have been around for a long time - after all, people love a good scare, and what is more terrifying than a monster showing up at night and sucking the life essence out of you? But leave it to Stephen King to turn the terror up a notch, add a whole new layer to it. How? Simply - using the winning formula that he continues to employ in the vast majority of his work.

    The eponymous 'Salem's Lot is a small town in Maine, and it is not a stranger to secrets and darkness.

    And trust me, that's the discoveries that you can easily go without for the darkness of the human soul as presented by Stephen King beats everything that any monster or boogeyman can ever send your way. The small town of 'Salem's Lot can boast your usual lies, bullying, corruption, and prejudice - and spices it up with well-hidden child abuse, violence, and murders. Not so quaint, is it?

    From the very first pages of the novel we know that some terrible fate made 'Salem's Lot a ghost town with apparently only a couple of survivors. It doesn't take the reader long to realize, as we go back in time to see how the events unfolded, that the mysterious menacing Marsten House welcomed new evil that tends to lurk at night, floating past your (hopefully, tightly shut) windows.

    The story itself is rather straightforward, steadily moving along to its almost-conclusion that we have glimpsed in the first few pages, and we watch with bated breath as our bunch of good guys - Ben, Mark, Susan, Matt - are trying to take on the supernatural horror. Oh, and did I forget

    King is excellent with the plotting and the pacing (

    ). The story never lags, the suspense and sense of foreboding are rampant, and there are quite a few truly nailbiting situations. Nothing distracts the reader from the vampire story unfolding on the background of small-town horrors. There are no heavy-handed lessons to be learned, no deep morals to take out of the story -

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  • Bradley

    Well this is annoying times two. I just wrote a review and lost it, and then there's the *other* issue.

    What other issue?

    Oh, the one where my 14 year old self of infinite wisdom and experience remembered a boring tale lacking truly epic blood and guts from what should be a vampire tale in a small town. If that 14 year old could have had his way, then 80% of the novel would have been excised for being too-character driven, too-focused on hundreds of characters only set up to be knocked down in gru

    Well this is annoying times two. I just wrote a review and lost it, and then there's the *other* issue.

    What other issue?

    Oh, the one where my 14 year old self of infinite wisdom and experience remembered a boring tale lacking truly epic blood and guts from what should be a vampire tale in a small town. If that 14 year old could have had his way, then 80% of the novel would have been excised for being too-character driven, too-focused on hundreds of characters only set up to be knocked down in gruesome death (or undeath), and too detail-driven and poorly-paced for a thriller.

    Damn, I was a dipshit. I'm not saying that I'm no longer a dipshit, mind you, just that I think that kid was a real idiot. I mean, I'd only been reading anything at all for less than a year and 8 months of that was focused on learning *how* to read. Of course I was going to be influenced more by the all the slasher movies rather than novel construction. I even watched the crapfest that I considered the made for tv movie based on this book, and I think I might have been a *little* too harsh on it, too.

    So flash-forward to now, when I jump up the rating from a scathing 3 stars to a full-blown 5, an adult reading an adult novel of suspense, emotionally invested characters, subtle humor, more high-brow words than I remember Stephen King usually using in his novels, and beautifully crafted passages of hometown life falling into what might as well have been a modern retelling of a medieval town falling under the spell of the Black Plague, with all the horror and sadness and superstition that entails.

    This novel was gripping and intense to my adult sensibilities. Do I feel like a fool for my old memories? Yes. Am I embarrassed? Yes. Am I absolutely impressed and amazed that the very first "trash" novelist I got into as a kid actually turned out to be a consummate master of the writing craft? Yes.

    All the things I hated as a kid happen to be the things I love the most, here. The characters were absolutely gorgeous. I fell into them, and later, I fell into love with the whole town. The fact that it had a cancer that was eating away at it from the inside, slowly, was only a tension-driver. This may be a vampire novel, but it is really a tragedy, through and through. We expect to love and lose our loved ones, and this is the true horror. Not just the eyes like stars or the breath that smells of pure putrescence or the image of a supernatural horror that no longer needs keys because, now, the dead can squeeze between door jams.

    Of course, Part 3 was all action all the time, with the stakes as high as it can be. It was all for the sake of pure survival. But Part 1 (the get to know you) and Part 2 (something isn't right) were some of the best readings of Stephen King, like, ever. :) Believe me, he has a personal formula when it comes to his writing, but I know of no one who's able to pull off exactly what he pulls off. He makes everyone so damn real to me. :)

    Fun fact! There's a dead John Snow who knows nothing in this novel! Isn't that fun?

    So, I've eaten crow and said that I'm sorry for being an childhood idiot, but what I really mean is that There Are No Sparkles. This is a novel of horrible anticipation and and deep sadness, of exciting vampire hunting with truly intelligent foes. There are no levelled-up vamps or long antihero arcs or Master Vampire Hunters. And best of all, there are no werewolves.

    There is, however, a sense of reality and loss and fear, and if you are missing a huge dose of that in your life, if only to hold up as a mirror to your own life to say that things aren't so bad with you, then you really ought to jump out there and pick up a copy. I can't believe this is only SK's second novel! Wow!

  • Delee

    I was a bit of a wimp before I entered my teen years...so I stayed away from anything vampire. My first vampire experience was Love at First Bite, and not knowing it was a comedy (yes, it was before you could Google) I put on a brave face for the friend that invited me- and entered the movie theater terrified by what I would see. Luckily the evenly tanned George Hamilton awaited me...along with some mighty impressive disco dancing. The scary blood suckers would have to wait to frighten me.

    Next

    I was a bit of a wimp before I entered my teen years...so I stayed away from anything vampire. My first vampire experience was Love at First Bite, and not knowing it was a comedy (yes, it was before you could Google) I put on a brave face for the friend that invited me- and entered the movie theater terrified by what I would see. Luckily the evenly tanned George Hamilton awaited me...along with some mighty impressive disco dancing. The scary blood suckers would have to wait to frighten me.

    Next was Fright Night...again not so scary- I would have welcomed Christopher Sarandon nibbling at my neck for all eternity. A year later I was hooked on Interview with a Vampire's beautiful and tragic characters....but nothing to panic about yet...

    Enter into my life- the book SALEM'S LOT!!! Now these were vampires that kept me awake at night- pulling my covers up just under my nose. Not that flimsy cotton sheets would be enough to protect me from impending doooooooooooom...but so far no blood has been spilled. Knock on wooden cross.

    Writer Ben Mears has come back home to Jerusalem's Lot after twenty-five years, to write a book and face his fears...

    The Marsten House, an abandoned house- that has haunted Ben since he was a child has recently been purchased by a Kurt Barlow- and Ben is curious about both house and owner.

    ...but as he settles into town- one boy goes missing and another turns up dead...or undead should I say....

    Hands down my favorite Stephen King- and no matter how many newer, shinier, sparkly vampires- come along to try to tempt me- none can compare to SALEM'S LOT.

  • Mohammed Arabey

    بالأخص في اغلب ما يقدم علي الساحة الأن من هراء يلقب بأدب الرعب لبعض المؤلفين الجدد كالمنحوس والمرسوس واستخربوص وغيره، هذا الهراء الذي ملأ معرض كتاب 2016 وبعضه العمل الثالث لمؤلفيه العظماء

    تبدأ الرواية برجل ما وشاب صغير يسافران سويا من بلدة لآخري، يحاولون الإبتعاد عن الولايات المتحدة قدر الإمكان ،حتي يقرأ الرجل خبر حول مدينة ساليم لوت، واختفاء اغلب سكانها تماما وانتقال القليل منهم لمدن اخري بعيدة، والشائعات التي تنسج حولها من اصوات غريبة وانوار واختفاءات لبعض السكان بالمدن المجاورة لها

    ليضطر الرجل والفتي الرجوع…..ونرجع نحن ايضا معهم بالذكريات

    ليبدأ الجزء الأول

    تبدأ قصة اخر اسبوعين تقريبا للمدينة..من أواخر سبتمبر حتي 6 اكتوبر، حيث في يوم باواخر الصيف وبداية الخريف حضر بين ميرز، مؤلف متوسط النجاح، للمدينة الصغيرة التي عاش بها طفولته، ليتعافي من حادث فقد بسببه زوجته، وليكتب رواية جديدة ترتبط بمواجهته مخاوف طفولة قديمة تخص

    ، بيت مهجور علي تلة في اقصي شمال غرب المدينة كئيب الشكل وصار مهجورا،فقد كان مشيده رجلا مجنونا عذب زوجته حتي الموت وانتحر مشنوقا...وظل البيت بلا سكان، وعندما دخله بين كتحدي طفولي منذ اكثر من 20 عاما شعر انه رأي جثة الرجل مازلت مشنوقة في غرفة نومه، انها خيالات الطفولة

    يتعرف علي سوزان بالصدفة في الحديقة وهي تقرأ احد رواياته، ويحدث بينهما إعجاب وحب، تعرفه علي امها المتشككة وابيها الذي يعجب بشخصية بين القوية العملية، ويسكن بين في نزل ايفا ،ارملة فقدت زوجها في حريق شهير كاد يقضي علي البلدة في الخمسينات

    يحاول بين الذهاب للبيت مرة اخري تأجيره من محامي البلدة ليكتب به ولكن المحامي يخبره بأن البيت تم بيعه منذ أيام قليلة لرجل نمساوي ،بارلو، متوقع ان ياتي خلال ايام.. والذي اشتري ايضا محلا ضخما مع شريكا له انجليزيا يدعي ستاركر ليبيع به انتيكات اجنبية واثرية

    تأتي الصناديق من الجمارك ، من بينهم صندوق كبير ثقيل جدا يجد عمال الشحن صعوبة في حمله، لكن ستاركر يحمله بكل سهولة...ستاركر هو الواجهة بينما بارلو لم يقابله احد بعد في المدينة حيث انه في سفريات عمل

    لسبب ما هناك امرا ما لاحظته مع ستيفين كينج في رواية كتبها بعد تلك بثلاثين عاما عن الكهرباء

    في مشهد ممتاز قرب ذروة الأحداث هناك شخصية ما -كي لا احرق لك الأحداث- يحمل الصليب ليشع بوهج إيمانه وليحاول صد ونفي مصاص الدماء، وما أن يتردد تلك الشخصية ويبدأ في التشكك ويحاول أن يحل الأمر بنفسه دون ايمانه يزول الوهج عن الصليب بل و ينجح مصاص الدماء في انتزاعه من يد الشخصية وكسره بسهولة بالرغم من انه في البداية كان يخشي منه وقت توهجه

    لا يا صديقي ليس مجرد ان تلوح بصليبك والماء المقدس سيبعد عنك الشر، كما أنه ليس بترديد المعوذتين وحمل مصحف سيمنع عنك الشر، ليس معني ركوعك وقيامك وسجودك بشكل روتيني يجعل منك مؤمنا بحق

    فمثلا وصف صديق سوزان السابق والذي وقع في حبها البطل ، ستجد ان امها مقتنعة بذلك ذو الشعر المموج الطويل والعيون الحالمة , الشاب الرقيق الحساس، بينما أبيها قد ارتاح لبين الرجل بحق والذي لا يمانع استكمال عمله بعد العشاء

    هذا هو الشئ الذي واجهة الطفل مارك..أعز اصدقاءه يناديه من خارج شباك الدور الثاني ويطلب منه ان يدعوه للدخول للعب سويا

    نعم هو احد المشاهد المقبضة بها

    ماذا تقول ياصديقي ؟ قلت لك انها رواية عميقة تحوي بعض الفلسفة؟

    بل أنها رواية عن مرعبة عن بيت مهجور مسكون بظلال من الماضي

    وعن مدينة يختفي سكانها كالكثير من المدن الأمريكية

    وعن مصاصي الدماء

    نعم , انها عن مصاصي الدماء ياصديقي

    محمد العربي

    من 2 فبراير 2016

    الي 7 فبراير 2016

    بعد تلك الرواية بدأ كينج في كتابة تحت القبة بمنتصف السبعينات عن مدينة صغيرة ايضا ولكنه توقف لان الفكرة لم تختمر جيدا وقتها ليعود لها بعد 25 عاما

    في قصة ممتازة اخري عن المدن الصغيرة

    المقال ببداية الرواية يروي بعض القصص الحقيقية عن مدن امريكة اختفت وسبب الظاهرة وتفسيرها الطبيعي وتلميح للتفسيرات الماورائية لتلائم الرواية

    وقد استخدمه بشكل كبير احمد خالد توفيق في عدد جديد من سلسلة ماوراء الطبيعة في 2016

    عندما بدأت البحث عن صور لاضيفها في الريفيو فوجئت للمستوي الهوليوودي الرخيص في تصميم شكل مصاصي الدماء للافلام المبنية علي الرواية , مبالغ فيه جدا .. الرواية صورت الموضوع بصورة اكثر واقعية تجعل تخيلها اكثر قبولا مما يجعله ايضا اكثر رعبا, وسهولة في استخراج الرمز به

    فأنس الفيلم وابدأ بالرواية

    وعذرا لسوء ترجمة المقاطع من الرواية

  • Dan Schwent

    When writer Ben Mears moves back to 'Salem's Lot, a sleepy Maine town he spent a few years living in as a child, he has bitten off more than he can chew. 'Salem's lot is home to an ancient evil. Can Ben Mears and his friends stop the vampire in their midst before falling victim to his lust for blood?

    One of the great things about getting older is that old books magically become new books after ten years. I forgot most of the wrinkles of this one so I figured it was a good time to give it another

    When writer Ben Mears moves back to 'Salem's Lot, a sleepy Maine town he spent a few years living in as a child, he has bitten off more than he can chew. 'Salem's lot is home to an ancient evil. Can Ben Mears and his friends stop the vampire in their midst before falling victim to his lust for blood?

    One of the great things about getting older is that old books magically become new books after ten years. I forgot most of the wrinkles of this one so I figured it was a good time to give it another read.

    'Salem's Lot owes a lot to Jack Finney's

    . In this case, the pod people are replaced by vampires! Stephen King does a great job portraying small town life and then destroying it. While I remembered the bare bones of the plot, most of it had been lost in the sands of time so it was a pretty suspenseful read the second time through.

    Ben Mears is the first instance of what has become a Stephen King staple over the years: the writer as the main character. In some ways, Mears is a prototype for the protagonists of

    and

    . Mears, damaged by the death of his life, moves back to 'Salem's Lot to try to resume writing. Good luck with that.

    The characters other than Ben Mears were an interesting crew. Too bad most of them are dead or worse by the end. I'd read a second book featuring the two survivors dealing with the fallout from this one.

    If I had to pick one thing to gripe about, it would be that the ending itself seemed a little easy. After everything that came before, it was kind of a whimper rather than a bang. Also, I had to wonder why they didn't just burn Barlow's hiding place down and be done with it.

    40 years later, Stephen King's sophomore effort is still a fine read. His Dracula meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers tale is just as suspenseful as the first time I read it. Four out of five stars.

  • Lyn

    Vampires.

    Years after I first read it, I can truthfully say that this is still on a short list of scariest books I have ever read.

    King at his best.

    An American re-telling of

    , King stays close to the vampire myth but with some of his own storytelling thrown in and some subtle changes that make for an original novel. I cannot help but think that Barlow helped to usher in a new generation of vampire literature, of which we have now been inundated for the past few years.

  • Samadrita

    The last time I picked up a King novel, my inclination towards critical analysis of a text was still just a budding obsession. Now it is an enduring preoccupation. Try as I may, I cannot overlook the subtle slips in King's plot arrangement and characterization any more - the inevitability of women being cast in the molds of the lover or the victim of abuse or the tactless ingenue is a veritable threat to my fangirlism. (This is not to mention the tropes of the

    and other assorted

    The last time I picked up a King novel, my inclination towards critical analysis of a text was still just a budding obsession. Now it is an enduring preoccupation. Try as I may, I cannot overlook the subtle slips in King's plot arrangement and characterization any more - the inevitability of women being cast in the molds of the lover or the victim of abuse or the tactless ingenue is a veritable threat to my fangirlism. (This is not to mention the tropes of the

    and other assorted cliched representations of people of color.)

    And yet I cannot challenge the legitimacy of his repute as a master story-teller. Even though it has been many years since I picked up my first King title from the bookshelves of a friend, his words still make me break out in goose flesh in the middle of the night, his narrative voice exerts a hypnotic pull rendering me incapable of detaching myself from the world wrecked by paranormal phenomenon that he carefully builds from scratch. The horror that King conjures up here is not just a direct consequence of the emergence of an unknown, malevolent force which destabilizes the functioning of a secluded small town but the sinister darkness of the human soul which needs just the right trigger to be unleashed, to soundlessly absorb all capacity for reason and leave a bestial urge for carnage in its place. The supernatural forces that threaten to disrupt the lives of King's characters are symbolic of the evils existing in the realm of reality - the ominous shadows of war, hunger, poverty, totalitarianism.

    All accusations of profit-making and sacrificing good writing on the altar of plot can be damned to hell. King can write a wordy passage fraught with grim philosophical reflections when he wishes to. He can still rescue me from a miserable reading rut and remind me of the hollowness of ritualism - that faith is not prayer offered without feeling or the routine thumbing of rosary beads but simply the mind channeling an inner strength to purge the darkness within, professing unwavering devotion to a worthy cause.

    Before the abomination called

    inspired the publishing industry to mass market vampires as lustful, gorgeous, innocuous hunks ready to pleasure women at their behest, there were fictional bloodsucking fiends like the ones in

    . And no that is not a spoiler, given most community reviews here contain more generous spoiler-y synopses in this regard.

    In terms of thematic resonance and characterization this is far from King's best work, but if you haven't yet made yourself familiar with Bram Stoker's masterpiece and wish to make the acquaintance of vampires who give rise to pure spine-tingling, bone-chilling terror, this is the book for you. Fans of

    will also find something of value here.

    I am just glad that there are a great many number of King titles out there left for me to devour.

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