So, I’ve been reading the horror novel Needful Things by Stephen King ever since school got out. It’s a thick book but not a hard read, and although I’m not finished with it yet, I have been enjoying it so much that I just have to rave about it.
Summary: Everyone in the small town of Castle Rock, Maine is intrigued when this mysterious new shop opens up out of nowhere. Needful Things, a weird kind of curio-shop, is owned by the unsettling, unearthly (but devilishly charming) Leland Gaunt, and you’d never think you’d want what he sells so bad until you actually see it. Anything you could possibly desire, even things which are intangible, manifest themselves in the merchandise of Needful Things, and Mr. Gaunt is always willing to make a bargain… as long as you can pay his price. Slowly, he takes control of Castle Rock as they realize it isn’t as easy as it sounds, and that the dealing is not done until Mr. Gaunt says it’s done.
I started reading this book because I knew Stephen King has an amazing writing legacy, having written books like The Shining, Carrie, and the stories behind movies like The Shawshank Redemption and Stand By Me. Needful Things is so far the only book of his that I have read, but even if you are not a horror or thriller fan I would highly recommend it.
I kept reading because I was completely blown away by how much time King takes to develop each and every character, relationship and story, and how masterfully he keeps track of every single one and weaves it ALL together. The characters and their lives are so amazingly and painfully real, not to mention compelling. The characters and their relationships are written SO WELL, I can’t even handle it. This is truthfully what makes the story for me. The scary parts are developed well, but they can get pretty repetitive and slow sometimes.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a compelling and totally encompassing read and anyone prepared to get really emotionally invested in the lives of characters.
Speaking of horror and thrillers… the Seattle Public Library’s University Branch is currently doing a Movie Mondays feature on Alfred Hitchcock! Happening right now, every Monday they are showing a different movie, going chronologically through his career, including classics like Psycho and Rear Window. This Monday, July 14th’s feature film is Notorious and the series ends with the movie Frenzy. There is even free popcorn! Make sure not to miss it.