Salem's Lot by Stephen King

77%

14 Critic Reviews

King spares no one. The elderly, children, animals, and even main characters are all up for grabs where the vampire is concerned. There are thrilling scenes, but the true horror takes place between the lines, with the reader imagining the worst — which usually proves to be true.
-Blog Critics

Synopsis

Ben Mears has returnedto Jerusalem's Lot in the hopes that living in anold mansion, long the subject of town lore, willhelp him cast out his own devils and provide inspiration for his new book. But when two young boys venture into the woods and only onecomes out alive, Mears begins to realize that there may be somethingsinister at work and that his hometown is under siege by forces of darkness far beyond his control."

 

About Stephen King

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Stephen King was born in Portland, Maine, on September 21, 1947. After graduating with a Bachelor's degree in English from the University of Maine at Orono in 1970, he became a teacher. His spare time was spent writing short stories and novels. King's first novel would never have been published if not for his wife. She removed the first few chapters from the garbage after King had thrown them away in frustration. Three months later, he received a $2,500 advance from Doubleday Publishing for the book that went on to sell a modest 13,000 hardcover copies. That book, Carrie, was about a girl with telekinetic powers who is tormented by bullies at school. She uses her power, in turn, to torment and eventually destroy her mean-spirited classmates. When United Artists released the film version in 1976, it was a critical and commercial success. The paperback version of the book, released after the movie, went on to sell more than two-and-a-half million copies. Many of King's other horror novels have been adapted into movies, including The Shining, Firestarter, Pet Semetary, Cujo, Misery, The Stand, and The Tommyknockers. Under the pseudonym Richard Bachman, King has written the books The Running Man, The Regulators, Thinner, The Long Walk, Roadwork, and Rage. King is one of the world's most successful writers, with more than 100 million copies of his works in print. Many of his books have been translated into foreign languages, and he writes new books at a rate of about one per year. In 2003, he received the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. In 2012 his title, The Wind Throught the Keyhole made The New York Times Best Seller List.
 
Published May 6, 2008 by Anchor. 470 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Horror, Literature & Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Action & Adventure, Political & Social Sciences, Humor & Entertainment. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Salem's Lot
All: 14 | Positive: 12 | Negative: 2

Blog Critics

Good
Reviewed by xoxoxoe on Jan 05 2012

King spares no one. The elderly, children, animals, and even main characters are all up for grabs where the vampire is concerned. There are thrilling scenes, but the true horror takes place between the lines, with the reader imagining the worst — which usually proves to be true.

Read Full Review of Salem's Lot | See more reviews from Blog Critics

Blog Critics

Above average
Reviewed by Sommerfeldt on Aug 05 2009

...a haunting tale of vampires and evil, the struggle for good and love and the ultimate revenge on the dark side of humanity — and inhumanity. Some critics might accuse the author of the usual crimes; shallow female characters, oversimplifying the action...This has been Stephen King's style through many, many years however, and it's worked.

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Booklist Online

Excellent
Reviewed by Bill Ott on Dec 31 2010

King feels both affection for and anger toward his small town. A part of him wants to see ’Salem’s Lot get its comeuppance, and this part gives the novel a degree of frisson that most vampire stories lack.

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Tor

Below average
Reviewed by Grady Hendrix on Oct 25 2012

King’s reach far exceeds his grasp and ‘Salem’s Lot falls way short of his lofty target, but he would hit these marks in his next book.

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Boomtron

Above average
Reviewed by Rob on Dec 14 2008

I’ve read a dozen of so Stephen King novels by now. ‘Salem’s Lot is one of the better ones I think but still not King at his best. It is too predictable to be really outstanding. If you like a good classic horror tale this is your book...

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Things Mean a Lot

Above average
Reviewed by Ana S on Oct 24 2011

...I wasn’t completely happy with how their objections were framed because there were too many echoes of the anti-science feeling...Pet peeve aside, ‘Salem’s Lot was a hugely enjoyable read.

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Tiny Library

Good
Reviewed by Sam (Tiny Library) on Jun 14 2011

he real strength of Salem's Lot was the setting, the Lot itself...This book was scary to me, but I am a bit of a wimp. I'd say it's amongst King's scarier books but not as scary as It or The Shining.

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The Book Lover's Boudoir

Excellent
Reviewed by pamelascott30 on Oct 23 2013

This structure works really well. I also like the way King includes chapters that show various goings on in the town with chapters that focus on each of the main characters. I love the way King gradually reveals what happens as Barlow’s vampires start to take over.

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InkSlinger Blog

Above average
Reviewed by THE INK SLINGER on Mar 09 2012

A writer of King’s creative calibre could’ve easily told the same story without the smut. And the book would’ve been all the better for it.

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Summer Reading Project

Good
Reviewed by Unknown on Nov 11 2012

As I said before, I liked to see vampires as monsters. They're supposed to be mysterious and terrifying. Barlow hits the mark on both counts.

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Suvudu

Good
Reviewed by Matt Staggs on Jan 05 2012

Salem’s Lot is one of his best, and creepiest, early novels. If you’re looking for a good story about vampires that don’t sparkle, this is a good one.

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Reading Rants

Above average
on May 03 2007

This granddaddy of vampire fiction was penned ‘waaaaaay back in 1975, but is still amazingly popular today...Oooooo, this novel is so scary, I wouldn’t recommend reading it after dark.

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Fourth Street Review

Excellent
on Oct 03 2012

At its core, ‘Salem’s Lot is simply a well-paced, well-plotted novel. The book’s ability to make a simple invitation or an errant scratching noise deeply menacing are what make it terrifying (and what better month to read such a novel than October).

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Horror Drive-In

Good
Reviewed by Trever Palmer on Sep 28 2014

Carrie introduced Stephen King as a fine storyteller, and Salem’s Lot cemented that fact with a strong maturity. It was simply a foreshadowing of everything that would come.

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Reader Rating for Salem's Lot
87%

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Michael Manley 20 Aug 2013

Rated the book as 4 out of 5