The thing I love most about Stephen King is how he makes me feel so nostalgic about my childhood as a young boy in America in the '50s. There are at least three ways that ought to be impossible.
I've come to King quite late, so I've not managed more than a few of the more famous ones yet. What I'm discovering is that he writes an utterly fantastic first halves of books. I love the conceits, and the atmosphere he creates in It, Pet Semetary, Cujo and Carrie, but I wasn't much moved by the pay-off in any of them.
Can anybody recommend any of his short stories (not novellas)? It struck me that he might have written some really powerful ones, given his penchant for terrifying atmosphere. Any suggestions where to start?
Just read Night Shift
for a start. Most of the stories in it are marvelous. Different Seasons
, while less straight horror, is fantastic as well - it's a collection of 4 shorts.
Read his earlier work, which suffers less from the lack of pay off problem. I quit reading his stuff for that very reason, but Dead Zone
, 'Salem's Lot
- basically all the pre-Cujo stuff is very strong and often have great endings. Except The Stand
. Hard core King fans love it, but I thought it was the worst offender in the great build up, lousy ending arena.
This is a little off topic - but has anyone read Justin Cronin's The Passage
? It kind of reminded me of King at his best.