Stephen King Challenge: Carrie

Carrie Book Cover

I finished Carrie a few nights ago. Originally, I read this fascinating novel about a teased high school girl with telekinetic powers when I was 9. Seventeen years later, I admit I don’t remember any of it.

Sure, I remember the basics: Carrie gets her period in gym class, the girls tease her by throwing tampons and yelling to “plug it up”, her crazy religious mother, going to the prom, hell ensues, the end. But it was the in-betweens. The tiny, subtle things, like Carrie using the tampon to blot her lipstick. “She thinks they’re for lipstick,” Ruth Gogan calls out.

I loved the story of Carrie. I personally grew up being teased, so I wished for creepy powers to get back at my torturers. Of course, now, I realize this is morally wrong, as emphasized in the movie Chronicle – a similar story about three boys who develop telekinetic powers and one of them goes insane.

I finished the book in four nights; it’s such a quick read. I suggest to anyone interested in Mr. King’s work to give it a shot. It just so happens to be his first published novel.

I noticed more character development in ‘Salem’s Lot than in Carrie. Of course, ‘Salem’s Lot is longer and deals more with the relationship of the town than the characters themselves. Carrie’s characters have simple motivations: high school popular girls who want to go to prom, Carrie wanting to be accepted, her religious mother simply being insane, and so forth.

Don’t let those things deter you from this novel. It’s a great book, and it’ll make you cheer for Carrie despite her homicidal streak in the end.

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