Released: October 17, 1975
Thousands of miles away from the small township of 'Salem's Lot, two terrified people, a man and a boy, still share the secrets of those clapboard houses and tree-lined streets. They must return to 'Salem's Lot for a final confrontation with the unspeakable evil that lives on in the town.
I approached ‘Salem’s Lot with some scepticism. I’m generally not into the vampire genre, and surely there must be at least one dud among these early Stephen King books. Perhaps this would be it.
The book did start out a little slow for me, and at times it seems a little aimless as it builds up to the start of the climax. It didn’t get downright boring, but I felt that I cared enough about the characters and the relationships between them for bad things to just start happening to them already. It would be unfair to hold this against the book though, because once things start happening… they happen. Mercilessly. And it probably wouldn’t have felt as merciless without the build-up. The story doesn’t really start moving that much quicker, but bulldozes slowly but surely towards the conclusion. As with other Stephen King books I’ve read, this one doesn’t shy away from making the “that won’t possibly happen”-things happen. This makes the book unpredictable and wonderfully thrilling. Despite being very enjoyable, it never quite crossed from being very good to being great, but I’m impressed that Stephen King managed to make me enjoy a vampire story this much.