Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Carrie By Stephen King (finished)

I just finished Carrie by Stephen King.

Carrie is Stephen King's first novel.

Carrie is about a high school girl who has telekinesis, the ability to move objects with her mind. Carrie is awkward and she is frequently the butt of everyone's jokes. She tries to fit in at school but she is unable to, particularly because of the malice of a certain mean girl. Carrie ends up going to the prom with Tommy, a boy that she has like for a long time. But at the prom, something goes horribly wrong and Carrie decides that she will not be laughed at ever again.

I think there is a moral to this story. The moral is "Don't mess with people. Don't bully people, even if they are awkward and weak. Because they could have telekinesis and they may decide to kill you." I think it is a good moral. Seriously though, this theme seems to be in many of King's novels. The weak people in the books are not really weak and those that seem strong are not really strong. Interesting.

Because Carrie was King's first novel, there is an almost palpable raw quality to the book. Everything doesn't "work" in the book but it doesn't matter. The parts that do "work", work really well. I would compare this to Metallica's Kill 'Em All (their first album). Kill 'Em All is not Master of Puppets (their third album), which is a masterpiece but it is still good in all it's garage band sensibilities. In comparison, Carrie is not The Stand, King's masterpiece, but it is still good with it's own raw sensibilities.

King seems to intrinsically know what works. He has a sense for it. When he gets the sense that something is good with respect to building tension or for communicating human vulnerability, he just goes for it. And it works well.

There were some holes in the novel. For example, he explains that telekinesis is a recessive gene trait. But if telekinesis is a controversial phenomenon, then how can there be gene data for it. There has to be a significant number of known telekinetics and those people must have telekinetic offspring. Because telekinesis is rare (if any of those cases were acknowledged at all), gene studies could not have been done.

Overall, I like the book.
Pacing was uneven but good overall. (I didn't like reading about the same events through other people's perspectives.)
The writing was uneven but when it was good, it was very good.
The story was uneven but when it was good, it was very good.
I would recommend this book to those that like this genre.

If you read this review, please drop a like or a comment. It makes me happy.

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