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Stephen King: A Master Craftsman of the Written Word

  • Jul 16, 2010

I recommend reading anything you can by Stephen King, as he is a master craftsman of the written word. His books are consistently satisfying reads that also provide the depths that merit further analysis. I am confident that his cannon will be studied by later generations. 

You feel for his characters. They are multidimensional and multifaceted.  Annie Wilkes of Misery is the embodiment of dangerous fanatic and yet she isn't just a tool. There is a life and a backstory to this character that makes her both frighteningly ordinary (which is a consistent theme in King) and extraordinarily frightening. Continuing the theme of ordinary, his protagonists are well-rounded Everymen. Many times they are even the underdog - so ordinary there are contrasting characters to emphasize how common these characters are. The young protagonists in particular seem to be overshadowed by a better figure (usually a sibling). It seems very important to King that the people who experience the extraordinary events in his tales must be as accessible as possible by being so thoroughly "normal."  

King's tales also transport the reader into the world he designed. He has tales to tell that provide an entertaining voyage typically with a very honest and insightful commentary on the state of the current world. Anti-establishment, of course, but less subversive in that his message requests thoughtful action not blind disobedience.

I have laughed and I have cried (often in same book) over his work. I have reread many. The Stand is among my all time favorite works because it not only terrified me, it spoke to me - a spiritual me that is all too content to remain dormant unless challenged.  Every reading gives me something new to think about - a requirement of relevant literature in my estimation.

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July 16, 2010
Great review, Patricia! I've only read a few of his books and really need to check out more. Thanks for sharing!
More Stephen King reviews
Quick Tip by . September 04, 2011
At his best, King's a nearly unparalleled master of the contemporary pop genre novel; at worst, an intolerably prolix hack. As an actor, he's too maladroit to execute a cameo competently, which he's proven time and time again.
Quick Tip by . June 20, 2011
Stephen King can really turn phrases, and many of his plot ideas are pretty original. But he keeps writing a lot of cliche characters: Alcoholics, bad parents, abused high school students, and others of the sort you might find in a Robert Altman movie.
Quick Tip by . October 01, 2010
Stephen King's On Writing is the best book on writing I've read. And his other books are so much more than just scary stories. I love the most recent ones--a real return to form.
Quick Tip by . August 09, 2010
Can't write a novel shorter than 600 pages, his self-insert in Gunslinger was horribly egotistical, cusses too much, but I keep turning the pages.
Quick Tip by . July 16, 2010
has had some great books and some dross. For a man so prolific it's about par for the course.
Quick Tip by . July 16, 2010
One of the most prolific as well as engaging story tellers of our time! Even bad King is good.
Quick Tip by . July 16, 2010
Personally, I am less a fan of his novels and more a fan of his brilliant short story collections. If you haven't checked em' out, I highly suggest it.
Quick Tip by . July 15, 2010
Stephen King not just give you an exciting and tense story, he makes you meditate in the end of each book.
Quick Tip by . July 15, 2010
Stephen King not just give you an exciting and tense story, he makes you meditate in the end of each book.
Quick Tip by . July 13, 2010
What a fascinating man.He has such a great imagination.
About the reviewer
Patricia ()
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Member Since: Jul 13, 2010
Last Login: Jul 20, 2010 08:42 PM UTC
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Stephen Edwin King (born September 21, 1947) in Portland, Maine, is an American author of contemporary horror, fantasy and science fiction. Having sold an estimated 300–350 million copies of his books, King is best known for his work in horror fiction, in which he demonstrates a thorough knowledge of the genre's history. Many of his stories have been adapted for other media, including movies, television series and comic books. King has written a number of books using the pen name "Richard Bachman" and one short story where he was credited as "John Swithen"
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Filmography (Director): Maximum Overdrive
Birth Date: September 21, 1947
Movie Writing Credits: Pet Sematary, Maximum Overdrive, Cujo, Sleepwalkers

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