Carrie by Stephen King Book Talk
Author: Stephen King
Genre: Fiction / Horror
Page Count: 290 Pages
Released: April 5, 1974 by Doubleday
Movie Adaptations: November 3, 1976 / November 4, 2002 / October 18, 2013
High School student Carrie White is ruthlessly bullied by her peers at school and mistreated by her mother at home. The teen girl slowly realizes that she is not ordinary— she has the unique gift of telekinesis. If she puts her mind to it, she can move objects and even people at will. Despite her efforts at being normal and fitting in, her bullies refuse to leave her alone let her blend in. In true horror fashion, pure chaos ensues.
I watched the 2013 adaptation of this Stephen King classic years ago. The movie captured the horrific tone of the story and brought my teenage brain nightmares. That was the first time I ever watched a scary movie by myself and the story has stuck with me. One of my favorite books from childhood was Matilda, and that titular main character also had telekinetic powers. I was interested to see how two books in vastly different genres handled this plot point.
Unfortunately, since I had already watched the movie, I knew exactly where the story was going. There were no surprises left in the book, so the horror effect was lost on me. I still find the storyline intriguing, but I do not think I will gravitate towards Stephen King’s work much in the future. There were many scenes that were made sexual that felt unnecessary to the story as a whole. It made reading the book uncomfortable and distracted from the bullying theme.
The shifting perspectives was jarring at times. It was easy to forget that Carrie White was the main character when the story is told in third person omniscient rather than first person. There is nothing wrong with books written in the third person, but I was hoping to see into the mind of Carrie when I picked up this book. I wanted to know more about how she felt about her mother and the years of bullying. I was hoping for more time spent on developing her telekinetic skill.
If you are looking for a book to read to get you in the Halloween spirit, this is a novel that will fulfill your wishes. It has a cold tone over the course of the book that fits the season well.
Have you read any of Stephen King’s books? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!