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Old 06-11-2019, 04:36 PM   #1
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Stephen King's lesser known books

Hi there I was just reading The Dead Zone by SK, and I liked it more than The Shining. I wonder which of his books that aren't so well known do you like most. So, do recommend me some Stephen King's books!
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Old 06-11-2019, 09:25 PM   #2
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Well, you just picked one of my favourites of his: The Dead Zone.

The problem with the "lesser known" description is that for a King fan (as I once was, though much less so now) there is no such thing . For example, is Firestarter lesser known? It was made into a movie (but so was The Dead Zone). Firestarter didn't make favourite status for me, but I did enjoy it (4/5). Same goes for 'Salem's Lot.

I've spoken elsewhere of Different Seasons, a collection of four novellas. Three have been made into movies. Two are (IMO) some of the best that Stephen King has ever done: Rita Hayworth And Shawshank Redemption (movie was called just Shawshank Redemption) and The Body (movie was called Stand By Me). Coincidentally - or not - the movies for these two stories are also favourite movies of mine and are excellent adaptations (not always the same thing, and quite unusual for a King story to be so done so well).

My reaction to King varied quite a lot (I hated Carrie, Cujo and Thinner, and disliked The Shining, Delores Claibourne and Gerald's Game.) But I liked quite a few others and would recommend you try: Needful Things and Insomnia. I don't think It could be considered lesser known, but it made favourite status with me (but I definitely could not recommend the movies).
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Old 06-11-2019, 09:38 PM   #3
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And the last novella in Different Seasons is being made into a movie as well, according to wikipedia. But I digress.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Breathing_Method#Film
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Old 06-11-2019, 10:33 PM   #4
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And the last novella in Different Seasons is being made into a movie as well, according to wikipedia. But I digress.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Breathing_Method#Film
Thanks, that is interesting to know. This was certainly the least memorable of the quartet. Apt Pupil was memorable, I just didn't like it.


To refer back to my previous post, I do think Needful Things qualifies as lesser known and will add that I found it a delightfully grubby story, like a perverse version of the pay it forward idea: you can have what you think you need if you will just do this small, but nasty little thing to someone else. It was, I thought, quite cleverly done. Like so many other King books, the movie made from this was disappointing (despite having quite a good and appropriate cast).
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:03 AM   #5
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King did write some books under pseudonyms. The Running Man, also later made into a movie, was written as Richard Bachman. The book was very, very different than the movie and the ending is a definite shock following certain events in the real world.
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:11 AM   #6
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King did write some books under pseudonyms. The Running Man, also later made into a movie, was written as Richard Bachman. The book was very, very different than the movie and the ending is a definite shock following certain events in the real world.
The Long Walk is a good one as well 👍🏻
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Old 06-12-2019, 01:54 PM   #7
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Well, you just picked one of my favourites of his: The Dead Zone.

The problem with the "lesser known" description is that for a King fan (as I once was, though much less so now) there is no such thing . For example, is Firestarter lesser known? It was made into a movie (but so was The Dead Zone). Firestarter didn't make favourite status for me, but I did enjoy it (4/5). Same goes for 'Salem's Lot.

I've spoken elsewhere of Different Seasons, a collection of four novellas. Three have been made into movies. Two are (IMO) some of the best that Stephen King has ever done: Rita Hayworth And Shawshank Redemption (movie was called just Shawshank Redemption) and The Body (movie was called Stand By Me). Coincidentally - or not - the movies for these two stories are also favourite movies of mine and are excellent adaptations (not always the same thing, and quite unusual for a King story to be so done so well).

My reaction to King varied quite a lot (I hated Carrie, Cujo and Thinner, and disliked The Shining, Delores Claibourne and Gerald's Game.) But I liked quite a few others and would recommend you try: Needful Things and Insomnia. I don't think It could be considered lesser known, but it made favourite status with me (but I definitely could not recommend the movies).
Thanks for such a detailed post. I have watched Insomnia. But I thought Shawshank Redemption and The Body were short stories. I will try Needful Things. I'm psyched for Salem's Lot!

I loved reading Pet Sematary. What's your opinion of it?

I used to love most books in the past, but ever since I had e-books I became picky. Whenever I try to force myself to read an unappealing book I would get unhappy. That's why I asked about this. I think we might have similar taste in King's books. I also gave you some karma.
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Old 06-12-2019, 01:56 PM   #8
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Thanks to all of you who have posted here. I'll keep your views in mind.
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:56 PM   #9
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Thanks for such a detailed post. I have watched Insomnia. But I thought Shawshank Redemption and The Body were short stories. I will try Needful Things. I'm psyched for Salem's Lot!

I loved reading Pet Sematary. What's your opinion of it?

I used to love most books in the past, but ever since I had e-books I became picky. Whenever I try to force myself to read an unappealing book I would get unhappy. That's why I asked about this. I think we might have similar taste in King's books. I also gave you some karma.
I loved the first two-thirds of Pet Sematary, I thought it was going to turn into a favourite ... but then the last part turned into the sort of schlock horror that I don't much like. I ended up giving it a 3/5.

Which reminds me, I will add that I ended up giving 11.22.63 a 4/5 despite the fact that the last few pages felt like a cop-out. Everything up to that point felt like the King I knew and enjoyed from many years earlier.

I have slowly become better at dropping books I'm not enjoying, I used to be quite obsessive about finishing. And I think you're right, e-books have helped. There are just so many books so easily available that I don't have to worry about what I'm going to read next. I don't pay a premium for anyone except true favourites, everyone else can wait until the price comes down because I have more than enough to keep me busy. Thanks for the karma.
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Old 06-13-2019, 01:12 AM   #10
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Okay, lesser known and less appreciated, but I really enjoyed The Tommyknockers. Stephen King himself dislikes that one, but I think he's wrong.

I'd also recommend reading Desperation and The Regulators. Each stands alone, but there are fun connections if you read them back-to-back.
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Old 06-13-2019, 02:00 PM   #11
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Okay, lesser known and less appreciated, but I really enjoyed The Tommyknockers. Stephen King himself dislikes that one, but I think he's wrong.

I'd also recommend reading Desperation and The Regulators. Each stands alone, but there are fun connections if you read them back-to-back.
I've heard of the Tommykockers but never the regulators. I did enjoy reading Desperation.
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Old 06-13-2019, 02:06 PM   #12
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I loved the first two-thirds of Pet Sematary, I thought it was going to turn into a favourite ... but then the last part turned into the sort of schlock horror that I don't much like. I ended up giving it a 3/5.

Which reminds me, I will add that I ended up giving 11.22.63 a 4/5 despite the fact that the last few pages felt like a cop-out. Everything up to that point felt like the King I knew and enjoyed from many years earlier.

I have slowly become better at dropping books I'm not enjoying, I used to be quite obsessive about finishing. And I think you're right, e-books have helped. There are just so many books so easily available that I don't have to worry about what I'm going to read next. I don't pay a premium for anyone except true favourites, everyone else can wait until the price comes down because I have more than enough to keep me busy. Thanks for the karma.
I've been putting off reading 11.22.63, and for the moment my schedule doesn't permit it, so I'm postponing it still further. On verra ce qu'on verra.
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Old 06-17-2019, 06:34 PM   #13
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I've been putting off reading 11.22.63, and for the moment my schedule doesn't permit it, so I'm postponing it still further. On verra ce qu'on verra.
It's really good and should be read!
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Old 06-18-2019, 05:36 AM   #14
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It's really good and should be read!
I understand you...but I am a very fussy reader and with King, you never know.
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Old 06-21-2019, 11:21 AM   #15
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I've heard of the Tommykockers but never the regulators. I did enjoy reading Desperation.
The Tommyknockers I loved. But numerous people (including King himself) didn't, so take it with a grain of salt. I've read the book twice.

The Regulators was written at the same time as Desperation and the two books were published at the same time with interlocking covers. Desperation was published as a Stephen King book and The Regulators was published as a Richard Bachman book.

King took the ideas and characters from Desperation and said 'I wonder what would happen if I plunked these characters into an Ohio suburb?' and did just that.

Each book is independent of the other, but it is neat to see how characters in one book play out in the other.

Here's the two original covers, side-by-side:
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