April 26, 2007

Favorite Stephen King Novels

Here's a list of my favorite Stephen King novels, as promised several weeks ago:

Bag of Bones


Dreamcatcher (recently reviewed - click on title)

The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon

Hearts in Atlantis



Pet Sematary

Rose Madder

The Shining

The Stand



When I started putting this list together, I was going to write a brief comment next to each title. However, after a few blurbs, I realized that in most cases I was repeating myself. These are all great, creepy reads with memorable characters and scenes. King is a masterful storyteller, pulling his readers in from the opening lines and making the unbelievable seem quite real and possible.

I was quite surprised when I saw how many of his books of I've read. I knew it had been a lot, but until I typed up the list, I had no idea there were so many. There aren't too many authors I've read with such dedication. Other than a few mystery/thriller writers (John Sandford, Harlan Coben, and Dennis Lehane), there is only one other author I've read in such quantity and that's Elizabeth Berg, coming in at a grand total of 16 (with a new book coming out on May 1st!). The good news is that there are still many more books by Stephen King that I want to read.

Oh, and if you were wondering, The Stand is my #1 favorite of all.


  1. Anonymous4:52 PM

    You know I tried to read Stephen King years ago and just couldn't get into him. Now I have lots of book buddies who love him. Maybe I should try him again now that I'm older and wiser?

  2. Anonymous5:20 PM

    hint hint
    the Talisman :D

    i am eagerly awaiting your review of the Hosseini novel.

  3. Anonymous5:51 PM

    "The Stand" is my favorite as well. I read it when I was in college I think. My first Stephen King book was "Salem's Lot" which I did read in college. I can still remember reading into the night, my roommate asleep and thinking that something was scratching at our 2nd story window. I really liked "It" and "The Shining". I guess really I like best all his older ones. He lost me about the time of "Delores Claiborne".

  4. The Stand is definitely my favorite, I read the original and also the later expanded edition. The other ones that scared the dickens out of me were Salems Lot, The Shining and Christine.

    I stopped reading everything of his after Dolores Claiborne. I did love The Green Mile.

  5. I really like "Misery", but what I enjoy best is his "Pop Of King" column in Entertainment Weekly.

  6. Anonymous7:23 AM

    I used to be a bit of a fan, got totally scared by Cujo and Pet Sematary, but I gave up on King after The Tommyknockers. I am curious about some of his newer books though and it's been a long time since I've read anything by him so I'm glad to see your list. Might help me make some choices if I'm in the mood for some horror :)

  7. I haven't read much of his stuff although I think I should because I think I'd probably like it. I've read Bag of Bones and Skeleton Crew and I borrowed Lisey's Story from the library last night. I know I have a copy if Insomnia laying around somewhere also. I'll have to check out the ones on your list!

  8. Oh you KNOW how I feel about Mr. King!! The Stand is my all-time favorite, but I also loved Hearts in Atlantis, It, The Shing and Insomnia from your list. Also...The Talisman!! LOVED it.
    And Salem's Lot...and The Dead Zone....and, I think you get the point!

  9. I think for King fans and non-fans alike, 'The Stand' will always be his masterpiece. I know it's my favorite as well.

    And I agree with Bybee, I love to read his columns in Entertainment Weekly, especially when he recommends books. His taste is superb.

  10. I've read exactly one Stephen King novel (The Green Mile) and it's not on your list! I enjoyed it, but I've never felt compelled to read more. Maybe someday.

  11. Les, tell me I can finish The Stand. Each time I've started I panic! Halfway through. Of course, it would also count as a Chunkster, wouldn't it? Or a "Fearster". You're very brave, my friend.

  12. I read my first King novel last year, The Talisman. I enjoyed it, but don't have plans to read any others.

  13. Hey, stepping in here. Bellezza . . . heck, yes, The Stand is a chunkster!!!!! I'm terrified of that thing!

  14. I love Stephen King but I have never been able to read The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon and look how short it is! I love his Dark Tower series and The Stand and Bag of Bones. I also like his EW column -- if it hadn't been for that, I would never have heard Green Day's American Idiot which is one of my favorite albums.

  15. Kristy - I've been trying to think of one book to recommend that might get you interested. One that isn't too long or too scary. I haven't read The Green Mile, but that might be a good one. Or maybe Bag of Bones. So many of his others are extremely frightening.

    think pink dana - I know, I know! Everyone keeps telling me to read this one. I will soon!

    The Hosseini review should be up today or tomorrow. :) Thanks for stopping by my blog!

    janezfan - I think my first was The Shining. What an incredibly scary read!! Same with IT. I haven't read Delores Claiborne. Guess I can skip that one, eh?

    SuziQ - I read the original but hope to read the uncut version sometime soon. Maybe next year. A challenge of re-reads might be in order! Ah, another negative remark toward Delores Claiborne. Scratch that one off my list!

    Bybee - Haven't read Misery, although I did enjoy the film. I'll have to start looking for his column in Entertainment Weekly. Thanks!

    Iliana - My husband and I were on a mini-vacation on Catalina Island and stumbled upon an actual pet cemetary. We wandered around through it and I couldn't help but get creeped out! {shudder} Tommyknockers was a bit strange, but I still enjoyed it. Read it while sitting by the pool while we were vacationing in Puerto Vallarta.

    Kristen - I have a copy of Lisey's Story on my nightstand, too. It's a library book, so I better get cracking and get it read!

    Stephanie - Wasn't Hearts in Atlantis wonderful? I've thought about renting the movie. Have you seen it? Hmm, another vote for The Talisman. Now to remember to get a copy...

    Kookiejar - I think you're right. I believe any fan of Stephen King's will tell you The Stand was their all-time favorite. Wonder why that is? What makes it stand out so well (no pun intended!)?

    Nancy - It's not on my list because I haven't read it! Saw (and loved) the movie, but haven't gotten around to reading the book. :)

    Bellezza - Is it the length that's giving you trouble or the storyline? Hang in there! It's so good (although, honestly, I've forgotten so much about it, it would be like reading it for the first time when I do get around to a re-read!).

    I think it should count as TWO chunksters! :)

    Booklogged - Any particular reason you're not planning to read more? Just didn't care for it enough to try something else?

    Nancy - Are you terrified by the length? It really goes quickly! Honest.

  16. Katya - I wonder if you have to be a baseball fan to enjoy The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon? It's been a few years since I read it, and as I recall, it was quite creepy. Not as much as some of his others, but it still sent chills down my spine. I haven't read any of the Dark Tower series. So many boooks... ;)

  17. Les, and Bookfool, it's not so much the length that scares me as the content. My friend loaned me her re-released, unabridged copy of 1134 pages, and yep, I think it counts as two Chunksters. I'm halfway through, so do I get credit for one? Every time I come face to face with evil in his books I'm afraid. He knows way too much about it, I think.

  18. I don't know what it is about TGWLTG. I like baseball and I'm a big fan of baseball movies -- there was just something about that book. Let me put in another vote for The Talisman and its followup -- Black House. Even though others haven't liked Dolores Claiborne, I did.

  19. Anonymous8:32 PM

    You are much, much braver than I am! I read Gerald's Game and didn't get a good night's sleep for six weeks. I was 18 at the time!!!!!! So, no more Stephen King for me...

  20. Bellezza - It's been such a long time since I read The Stand. I remember it was scary, but I don't have much recollection of the details. I think The Shining and IT scared me more, though.

    Katya - OK, adding another vote for The Talisman. And adding Black House to the list. Thanks! ;)

    Library Diva - Thanks for stopping by. Yep, he is a scary writer. I don't know why I like to read scary books. Maybe because SK's aren't just scary. They're beautifully written and easy to jump into. Great entertainment.

  21. Anonymous9:54 PM

    I was an avid Stephen King reader before I had Jennifer, so Cujo (published the same year) was the first I read after she was born, and also the last. I don't know if having a baby changed my taste for horror, but that book scared me so much that I've actually never read any other horror novel since.

    ~Janet in FW

  22. Janet - Cujo was a scary book, but I think some of his recent books have been even more frightening. You're probably wise to stay away from them. ;)


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