Night Shift

Night Shift

by Stephen King


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King’s first collection of short stories showcases the darkest depths of his brilliant imagination. Here we see mutated rats gone bad (“Graveyard Shift”); a cataclysmic virus that threatens humanity (“Night Surf,” the basis for The Stand); a possessed, evil lawnmower (“The Lawnmower Man”); unsettling children from the heartland (“Children of the Corn”); a smoker who will try anything to stop (“Quitters, Inc.”); a reclusive alcoholic who begins a gruesome transformation (“Gray Matter”); and many more shadows and visions that will haunt you long after the last page is turned.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780307947291
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 08/07/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 35,546
Product dimensions: 5.34(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.82(d)

About the Author

Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. Among his most recent are 11/22/63; Full Dark, No Stars; Under the Dome; Just After Sunset; Duma Key; Lisey’s Story; Cell; and the concluding novels in the Dark Tower saga: Wolves of the Calla, Song of Susannah, and The Dark Tower. His acclaimed nonfiction book, On Writing, is also a bestseller. He was the recipient of the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, and in 2007, he received the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America. He lives in Maine with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.


Bangor, Maine

Date of Birth:

September 21, 1947

Place of Birth:

Portland, Maine


B.S., University of Maine at Orono, 1970

Read an Excerpt


Oct. 2, 1850.


How good it was to step into the cold, draughty hall here at Chapelwaite, every bone in an ache from that abominable coach, in need of instant relief from my distended bladder—and to see a letter addressed in your own inimitable scrawl propped on the obscene little cherry-wood table beside the door! Be assured that I set to deciphering it as soon as the needs of the body were attended to (in a coldly ornate downstairs bathroom where I could see my breath rising before my eyes).

I'm glad to hear that you are recovered from the miasma that has so long set in your lungs, although I assure you that I do sympathize with the moral dilemma the cure has affected you with. An ailing abolitionist healed by the sunny climes of slave-struck Florida! Still and all, Bones, I ask you as a friend who has also walked in the valley of the shadow, to take all care of yourself and venture not back to Massachusetts until your body gives you leave. Your fine mind and incisive pen cannot serve us if you are clay, and if the Southern zone is a healing one, is there not poetic justice in that?

Yes, the house is quite as fine as I had been led to believe by my cousin's executors, but rather more sinister. It sits atop a huge and jutting point of land perhaps three miles north of Falmouth and nine miles north of Portland. Behind it are some four acres of grounds, gone back to the wild in the most formidable manner imaginable—junipers, scrub vines, bushes, and various forms of creeper climb wildly over the picturesque stone walls that separate the estate from the town domain. Awful imitations of Greek statuary peer blindly through the wrack from atop various hillocks—they seem, in most cases, about to lunge at the passer-by. My cousin Stephen's tastes seem to have run the gamut from the unacceptable to the downright horrific. There is an odd little summer house which has been nearly buried in scarlet sumac and a grotesque sundial in the midst of what must once have been a garden. It adds the final lunatic touch.

But the view from the parlour more than excuses this; I command a dizzying view of the rocks at the foot of Chapelwaite Head and the Atlantic itself. A huge, bellied bay window looks out on this, and a huge, toadlike secretary stands beside it. It will do nicely for the start of that novel which I have talked of so long [and no doubt tiresomely].

To-day has been gray with occasional splatters of rain. As I look out all seems to be a study in slate—the rocks, old and worn as Time itself, the sky, and of course the sea, which crashes against the granite fangs below with a sound which is not precisely sound but vibration—I can feel the waves with my feet even as I write. The sensation is not a wholly unpleasant one.

I know you disapprove my solitary habits, dear Bones, but I assure you that I am fine and happy. Calvin is with me, as practical, silent, and as dependable as ever, and by midweek I am sure that between the two of us we shall have straightened our affairs and made arrangement for necessary deliveries from town—and a company of cleaning women to begin blowing the dust from this place!

I will close—there are so many things as yet to be seen, rooms to explore, and doubtless a thousand pieces of execrable furniture to be viewed by these tender eyes. Once again, my thanks for the touch of familiar brought by your letter, and for your continuing regard.

Give my love to your wife, as you both have mine.


Oct. 6, 1850.


Such a place this is!

It continues to amaze me—as do the reactions of the townfolk in the closest village to my occupancy. That is a queer little place with the picturesque name of Preacher's Corners. It was there that Calvin contracted for the weekly provisions. The other errand, that of securing a sufficient supply of cordwood for the winter, was likewise taken care of. But Cal returned with gloomy countenance, and when I asked him what the trouble was, he replied grimly enough:

"They think you mad, Mr. Boone!"

I laughed and said that perhaps they had heard of the brain fever I suffered after my Sarah died—certainly I spoke madly enough at that time, as you could attest.

But Cal protested that no-one knew anything of me except through my cousin Stephen, who contracted for the same services as I have now made provision for. "What was said, sir, was that anyone who would live in Chapelwaite must be either a lunatic or run the risk of becoming one."

This left me utterly perplexed, as you may imagine, and I asked who had given him this amazing communication. He told me that he had been referred to a sullen and rather besotted pulp-logger named Thompson, who owns four hundred acres of pine, birch, and spruce, and who logs it with the help of his five sons, for sale to the mills in Portland and to householders in the immediate area.

When Cal, all unknowing of his queer prejudice, gave him the location to which the wood was to be brought, this Thompson stared at him with his mouth ajaw and said that he would send his sons with the wood, in the good light of the day, and by the sea road.

Calvin, apparently misreading my bemusement for distress, hastened to say that the man reeked of cheap whiskey and that he had then lapsed into some kind of nonsense about a deserted village and cousin Stephen's relations—and worms! Calvin finished his business with one of Thompson's boys, who, I take it, was rather surly and none too sober or freshly-scented himself. I take it there has been some of this reaction in Preacher's Corners itself, at the general store where Cal spoke with the shop-keeper, although this was more of the gossipy, behind-the-hand type.

None of this has bothered me much; we know how rustics dearly love to enrich their lives with the smell of scandal and myth, and I suppose poor Stephen and his side of the family are fair game. As I told Cal, a man who has fallen to his death almost from his own front porch is more than likely to stir talk.

The house itself is a constant amazement. Twenty-three rooms, Bones! The wainscotting which panels the upper floors and the portrait gallery is mildewed but still stout. While I stood in my late cousin's upstairs bedroom I could hear the rats scuttering behind it, and big ones they must be, from the sound they make—almost like people walking there. I should hate to encounter one in the dark; or even in the light, for that matter. Still, I have noted neither holes nor droppings. Odd.

The upper gallery is lined with bad portraits in frames which must be worth a fortune. Some bear a resemblance to Stephen as I remember him. I believe I have correctly identified my Uncle Henry Boone and his wife Judith; the others are unfamiliar. I suppose one of them may be my own notorious grandfather, Robert. But Stephen's side of the family is all but unknown to me, for which I am heartily sorry. The same good humour that shone in Stephen's letters to Sarah and me, the same light of high intellect, shines in these portraits, bad as they are. For what foolish reasons families fall out! A rifled escritoire, hard words between brothers now dead three generations, and blameless descendants are needlessly estranged. I cannot help reflecting upon how fortunate it was that you and John Petty succeeded in contacting Stephen when it seemed I might follow my Sarah through the Gates—and upon how unfortunate it was that chance should have robbed us of a face-to-face meeting. How I would have loved to hear him defend the ancestral statuary and furnishings!

But do not let me denigrate the place to an extreme. Stephen's taste was not my own, true, but beneath the veneer of his additions there are pieces [a number of them shrouded by dust-covers in the upper chambers] which are true masterworks. There are beds, tables, and heavy, dark scrollings done in teak and mahogany, and many of the bedrooms and receiving chambers, the upper study and small parlour, hold a somber charm. The floors are rich pine that glow with an inner and secret light. There is dignity here; dignity and the weight of years. I cannot yet say I like it, but I do respect it. I am eager to watch it change as we revolve through the changes of this northern clime.

Lord, I run on! Write soon, Bones. Tell me what progress you make, and what news you hear from Petty and the rest. And please do not make the mistake of trying to persuade any new Southern acquaintances as to your views too forcibly—I understand that not all are content to answer merely with their mouths, as is our long-winded friend, Mr. Calhoun.

Yr. affectionate friend,


Oct. 16, 1850.


Hello, and how are you? I have thought about you often since I have taken up residence here at Chapelwaite, and had half-expected to hear from you—and now I receive a letter from Bones telling me that I'd forgotten to leave my address at the club! Rest assured that I would have written eventually anyway, as it sometimes seems that my true and loyal friends are all I have left in the world that is sure and completely normal. And, Lord, how spread we've become! You in Boston, writing faithfully for The Liberator [to which I have also sent my address, incidentally], Hanson in England on another of his confounded jaunts, and poor old Bones in the very lions' lair, recovering his lungs.

It goes as well as can be expected here, Dick, and be assured I will render you a full account when I am not quite as pressed by certain events which are extant here—I think your legal mind may be quite intrigued by certain happenings at Chapelwaite and in the area about it.

But in the meantime I have a favour to ask, if you will entertain it. Do you remember the historian you introduced me to at Mr. Clary's fund-raising dinner for the cause? I believe his name was Bigelow. At any rate, he mentioned that he made a hobby of collecting odd bits of historical lore which pertained to the very area in which I am now living. My favour, then, is this: Would you contact him and ask him what facts, bits of folklore, or general rumour—if any—he may be conversant with about a small, deserted village called JERUSALEM'S LOT, near a township called Preacher's Corners, on the Royal River? The stream itself is a tributary of the Androscoggin, and flows into that river approximately eleven miles above that river's emptying place near Chapelwaite. It would gratify me intensely, and, more important, may be a matter of some moment.

In looking over this letter I feel I have been a bit short with you, Dick, for which I am heartily sorry. But be assured I will explain myself shortly, and until that time I send my warmest regards to your wife, two fine sons, and, of course, to yourself.

Yr. affectionate friend,


Oct. 16, 1850.


I have a tale to tell you which seems a little strange [and even disquieting] to both Cal and me—see what you think. If nothing else, it may serve to amuse you while you battle the mosquitoes!

Two days after I mailed my last to you, a group of four young ladies arrived from the Corners under the supervision of an elderly lady of intimidatingly-competent visage named Mrs. Cloris, to set the place in order and to remove some of the dust that had been causing me to sneeze seemingly at every other step. They all seemed a little nervous as they went about their chores; indeed, one flighty miss uttered a small screech when I entered the upstairs parlour as she dusted.

I asked Mrs. Cloris about this [she was dusting the downstairs hall with grim determination that would have quite amazed you, her hair done up in an old faded bandanna], and she turned to me and said with an air of determination: "They don't like the house, and I don't like the house, sir, because it has always been a bad house."

My jaw dropped at this unexpected bit, and she went on in a kindlier tone: "I do not mean to say that Stephen Boone was not a fine man, for he was; I cleaned for him every second Thursday all the time he was here, as I cleaned for his father, Mr. Randolph Boone, until he and his wife disappeared in eighteen and sixteen. Mr. Stephen was a good and kindly man, and so you seem, sir (if you will pardon my bluntness; I know no other way to speak), but the house is bad and it always has been, and no Boone has ever been happy here since your grandfather Robert and his brother Philip fell out over stolen [and here she paused, almost guiltily] items in seventeen and eighty-nine."

Such memories these folks have, Bones!

Mrs. Cloris continued: "The house was built in unhappiness, has been lived in with unhappiness, there has been blood spilt on its floors [as you may or may not know, Bones, my Uncle Randolph was involved in an accident on the cellar stairs which took the life of his daughter Marcella; he then took his own life in a fit of remorse. The incident is related in one of Stephen's letters to me, on the sad occasion of his dead sister's birthday], there has been disappearance and accident.

"I have worked here, Mr. Boone, and I am neither blind nor deaf. I've heard awful sounds in the walls, sir, awful sounds—thumpings and crashings and once a strange wailing that was half-laughter. It fair made my blood curdle. It's a dark place, sir." And there she halted, perhaps afraid she had spoken too much.

As for myself, I hardly knew whether to be offended or amused, curious or merely matter-of-fact. I'm afraid that amusement won the day. "And what do you suspect, Mrs. Cloris? Ghosts rattling chains?"

But she only looked at me oddly. "Ghosts there may be. But it's not ghosts in the walls. It's not ghosts that wail and blubber like the damned and crash and blunder away in the darkness. It's—"

"Come, Mrs. Cloris," I prompted her. "You've come this far. Now can you finish what you've begun?"

The strangest expression of terror, pique, and-I would swear to it—religious awe passed over her face. "Some die not," she whispered. "Some live in the twilight shadows Between to serve—Him!"

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Night Shift 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 198 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is my favorite Stephen King work (and I¿ve read a lot of them). Night Shift is a collection of short stories from early on in Mr. King¿s career. There are 20 stories contained within ¿ each quite short. The longest one is 34 pages long, but most tend to fall around the 17-page range. They may not be the deepest or most profound things ever written, but they¿re fun to read and that¿s what matters. Another plus to this book is that the tale of `Salem¿s Lot continues in two stories contained within. ¿Jerusalem¿s Lot' is a prequel, while ¿One for the Road¿ is an epilogue of sorts. So you might want to check it out if you were a fan of that novel. If you¿re in the mood for something fun to read to help pass a dull moment, Night Shift is for you. However, if you demand something richer and more intense, I¿d look elsewhere.
Amy Gallagher More than 1 year ago
I read this book for the first time over 25 years ago, and to this day, I cannot sleep or allow my children to sleep with the closet door open. A friend was spending the night and as she closed the closet in the guest room I said, "You close the door, too?" She replied, "Oh, yeah. I've read Stephen King."
InnocenceDiesAbbyDosent More than 1 year ago
This is a great book I loved it! The Boogeyman and Children Of The Corn are the scaryest!
JULIANN1 More than 1 year ago
First, let me say I have been a major Stephen King fan since I first read The Stand in 1981. I then read all his books up to that time, including Night Shift, which was the only one I didn't care for. I basically dismissed it as immature and lightweight—silly premises, like rats and a guy who turns into slime from drinking bad beer, with gratuitous gore tossed in for the gross-out factor. I've reread many of King's books since, but always skipped Night Shift. I guess I was the immature one then. I just finished it, and I am astonished. The work is brilliant, no less brilliant than any of King's work. Each story is wonderfully crafted. One of King's greatest talents, I think, is his portrayal of people, and he shines in this collection. Gray Matter (the stupid story about the guy who turns to slime from drinking bad beer) is a masterpiece of character. The trek up the hill with the case of beer is so good it could be framed. Trucks has the same these-people-are-so-real-and-right quality, and reminded me of The Mist, one of my all-time favorites. And to think I almost passed this collection by again.
1000_Character_Reviews More than 1 year ago
Some of the best storytelling that Stephen King produces is usually contained in his short story collections. Night Shift is no exception. Written well over 30 years ago for various publications, the book contains some real classics - most of which have been turned into movies (most of which sucked). Stories such as Children of the Corn, The Lawnmower Man (which oddly enough the movie had very little to do with the story...and even more oddly...the movie was better), Graveyard Shift, Trucks (became Maximum Overdrive), several that became Cat's Eye, and many more. It even includes the 'Salems Lot prequel and follow-up. Each story does a wonderful job of either creating tremendous suspense or scaring the hell out of you. They all mostly end with a bit of a cliffhanger ending that allows your imagination to run wild with how the story ends. A great read that allows you to experience one of the greatest storytellers of all time in bite-size chunks.
Bookworm1951 6 months ago
A collection of 20 short stories. Overall, a 3-star book. While one or two of them I would rate as 5 stars, there were just as many that were 1-2 stars. Most of the stores were just mediocre. Left you with a "what?" feeling. A couple were scary and a few were just sick in a warped way. OK read if you have the time but some of his books are so much better than this one.
Mom_in_Tennis_Shoes More than 1 year ago chill your bones. Stephen King is a great story-teller. Every story is so different and this book provides a lot of variety. Many of them are just pure suspense, which are my favorites, e.g. The Ledge and Quitters, Inc. There's some occultic ones which are not my favorites, e.g. Children of the Corn and Jerusalem's Lot. There will be something in this variety pack for everyone to enjoy. This is a collection written in the early 1970's. I think this author will one day be the modern day Edgar Allan Poe.
Aimee_Leon More than 1 year ago
These collections of Stephen King's earlier short stories were so excellent, believable & not so believable in the sometimes and very scary. I enjoyed reading them all. My ultimate favorite tale was Jerusalem's Lot, I Am the Doorway, Sometimes They Come Back, Quitters, Inc., I Know What You Need, The Last Rung on the Ladder, One for the Road, The Last Rung on the Ladder, Strawberry Spring & Gray Matter. Those are the real in depth and horrifying tales. I love this book a lot that I've read them several times, and would recommend it them to anyone. You cannot go wrong with SK earlier works.
pamkaye 4 months ago
This is a compilation of short stories ranging from 6 to 34 pages. Jerusalem's Lot, Children of the Corn, and Sometimes They Come Back are the three longest. Many of these of been turned into full length movies. I was not a fan of "I Am The Doorway", "The Boogeyman", or "The Mangler" My favorites were "The Ledge", "Children of the Corn", and "The Man With Flowers".
andersonden on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I think this is some of the best of King - old classic stories. Someone should really tell the film makers that stories like "The Lawnmower Man" are best left in print form, however. Most of them are a little too short to transfer well into a feature film (the possible exception being "Children of the Corn" which had a lot of possibilities left open). Sixteen out of the 20 here are very memorable. A good proportion for a short story collection.
jseger9000 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Stephen King's first short story collection Night Shift is pretty solid. Overall, it's not as good a collection as Skeleton Crew, but there are some real classics here.For my money Graveyard Shift, I Am the Doorway, Gray Matter, Children of the Corn, The Last Rung on the Ladder and One for the Road (a cool, spooky sort of an epilogue to 'Salem's Lot) are King at the top of his game.The rest of the stories don't quite approach that level, but all have something interesting about them. There are some that I wish were better, but I didn't think there was a clinker in the bunch.In a couple of stories, you can see King working out some early ideas for what would become classic novels. The first is Jerusalem's Lot a fun Lovecraftian tale about a family curse, a deserted village and the old gods. King is a monumentally better writer than Lovecraft ever was. Even his purposely-purple-prose seems less of an affectation than Lovecraft's usually is.The other, Night Surf is a sort of alternate take on Captain Trips and The Stand. A neat idea, but I wasn't wild about the story itself.There were a couple of horror/comedy stories (The Lawnmower Man and Quitters, Inc.) that were handled very well. They reminded me of the sort of stuff that Bentley Little does so well.Worth a read, definitely. For any other writer, this would be a top tier collection, but King is King for a reason and has done better collections since this one.
ManoDogs on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A collection of his earlier works, most of which are pretty good, but not great. Many were the bases for several of his movies, including Graveyard Shift, Lawnmower Man, and Children of the Corn.He later expanded several of these shorts into larger works, including Jerusalem's Lot (Salem's Lot) and Night Surf (The Stand).A decent collection for real fans and completists, but Skeleton Crew is superior.
Bookmarque on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One of the best collections of King's short fiction. Skeleton Crew is marginally better, but this is excellent. He reminds me a bit of Bradbury in the way that he can come up with many different scenarios and each still has a major punch.
StefanY on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Overall ¿ I really liked the first story, but after that the stories really seemed to taper off quite a bit until I got to Battleground. After that one, my interested was piqued and the book continued at a high level through The Ledge and on to the end with a few exceptions here and there raising my overall rating from a 6 to a 7.Jerusalem¿s Lot ¿ The first story is an ¿historical¿ account of the events that take place when a man and his faithful servant take residence in his ancestral home and explore the shunned ghost town of Jerusalem¿s Lot. The story is told through a series of letters and journal entries and is very different from King¿s normal style. It¿s a bit slow, but still creepy.Graveyard Shift ¿ A group of men who work in a factory are offered the ¿opportunity¿ to work over the 4th of July holiday cleaning out the basement of the factory. They discover a rat problem in the depths of the building that turns out to be worse than expected. This one was mildly amusing, not the best of the bunch.Night Surf ¿ Post apocalyptic preview of The Stand. The super flu has run rampant and wiped out most of the population. For all that this small group of survivors knows, they are the last people on the planet. So-so, maintains interest because of The Stand.I Am the Doorway ¿ A wheel-chair bound former astronaut with a strange affliction tells his friend about his vision of a crime that he is sure that he committed even though it is a physical impossibility for him to have committed it. This one took me much longer than it should have to finish. It did not keep my attention and frankly I was bored with it.The Mangler ¿ A police officer investigates an industrial accident at a laundry. What he finds there turns out to be more than just an accident. I liked this story. It was engaging and kept the tension going through the end.The Boogeyman ¿ A man speaks to a therapist about the deaths of his young children at the hands of the closet monster and the blame that he has taken upon himself for his part in them. Pretty darn good story¿until the end. Just my opinion, but I though that the ending really sucked.Gray Matter ¿ A man gets some kind of illness from drinking a bad beer and it begins to change his physical form. Not bad, this one moved along pretty well and had some decent suspense.Battleground ¿ Excellent story. A hit man receives a box from his mark¿s mother when he returns from a job. The suspense is built up really well and there¿s a great ending.Trucks ¿ This one is pretty good. It centers on a group of people who are trapped in a truck stop by a mob of possessed trucks. The movie Maximum Overdrive is based on this story and uses most of the major parts of the story, but extrapolates upon the story quite a bit. Another one with which I was not too pleased by the ending.Sometimes They Come Back ¿ Well written story about a man who is having recurring nightmares involving the childhood murder of his brother. When the teenage murderers begin appearing in his class 16 years later, he knows that something unnatural is afoot and takes it upon himself to find out how to stop it.Strawberry Spring ¿ Best story in the book so far, although a bit predictable. I can¿t really say why I enjoyed the story so much, it just seems to flow well. Told in first person, it is an account of a series of murders that take place on campus during the time that the protagonist is in college. I loved the ending of this one.The Ledge ¿ The Ledge is another solid offering. A tennis pro caught cheating with a millionaire¿s wife accepts a wager to walk the 5 inch ledge around the 40th floor. Good build up of tension through-out and another nice ending.The Lawnmower Man ¿ After a string of excellent stories, this one is pretty weak. A man sells his lawnmower after a cat is accidentally run over by the kid he hires to mow his lawn. The following summer, he procrastinates hiring a service to do the mowing and the lawn grows out of control. When he finally hi
JechtShot on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Night Shift is a collection of short stories by Stephen King first published in 1978. I will be the first to admit that I am a bigger fan of the King tomes and normally do not love his short fiction. Night Shift, however, is the exception. A few standouts that I would recommend: The Ledge, Quitter Inc., Children of the Corn and I Know What You Need. The rest of the stories are pretty good and vary in levels of believability from "very real" to "complete absurdity". If you are going to pass by any of the stops along the Night Shift train I would personally skip The Man Who Loved Flowers. Other than that, this is Stephen King gold.Night Shift is a great collection to pick up if you are in the mood to be scared, just a bit, one story at a time.
endersreads on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ahhh, the night shift. Nothing like the quietness of it. In King's "Night Shift" we have 20 shorts. The well known "Jerusalem's Lot (later shortened to Salem's Lot), Graveyard Shift (sweet), "Trucks", "The Lawnmower Man", "Children of the Corn"--we all have heard of these, and for good reason. It's been a while since I read this, and much has blurred. One story that sticks out in my mind is "Sometimes They Come Back". Bullies die hard...
Refill More than 1 year ago
We often think of Stephen King’s introduction as “Carrie”, but he was writing long before that through short stories. These helped make him the writer we know so well, and though they were mostly printed in pornographic magazines, there were some gems that would be difficult to come by if we were not gifted in 1978 with “Night Shift”, a collection of short stories containing some of his pre-“Carrie” stories. He wrote a few that came after, but they were typically not as strong. Because it is a collection, the plots vary. Some of the highlights include killer trucks, ghosts haunting a teacher, and a mill with horrific terrors underneath. It is the kind of stuff that can be done poorly on the SYFY cable network, but because King is so good with words, they often had me laughing at the end as I realized I just enjoyed the hell out of something so bizarre. My favorite was about the possessed industrial laundry machine. Or maybe the one about the soldiers in what could be described as a violent version of “Toy Story”. Speaking of movies, two of the writings, “The Ledge” and “Quitters, Inc.”, are translated for the screen by King himself in the 1985 film “Cat’s Eye”. One of the good adaptations of his work, the movie benefits from tight storytelling. This is one time where the book and the movie are both worthy of each other. “Quitters Inc.” is one of four original stories written for this collection, and it is the best of them. Another is “Jerusalem’s Lot”, a prequel to King’s 1975 novel “’Salem’s Lot”. It is slow and not easy to follow, though it does improve by the end. The remaining original stories here are “The Last Rung on the Ladder” and “The Woman in the Room”. These are not bad stories, but they are more sentimental in nature and break the momentum of the fun I was having. If they were going to be included, I would have preferred they not be so close to the end so it could have had a much more fun feeling at the end of the book. “Night Surf” was not an original story, and I didn’t care for it, but at least it was out of the way early on. Not his most terrifying book (although “Children of the Corn” is pretty damn atmospheric and disturbing), it is the most fun I have had reading King. I had a ball with this delightfully macabre collection and recommend it for most readers. Four stars out of five.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a great read! Once I picked this up I could not put it down. Each of the short stories in here aren't too long, so you can go through them quickly. They're fun but I'll be honest they scared me too! I would definitely recommend reading this as long as you don't mind getting spooked. I really enjoyed reading each of these stories and I can't wait to read them again!  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The stories are not quute what i was expecting, some of them just don't give me the chills one would expect from a Stephen King story. I mean some of them are really interesting and chilling, like "Sometimes They Come Back", but ithers are just plain silly. Possessed trucks? That sounds already done. And the way the short "Boogeyman" ended was just plain ridiculous
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great assembly of short stories. Must read for all Stephen King fans.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book a wonderful collection of well developed stories, characters, and fright! Writing a short story is such a talent, not everyone can do a great job like this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book. My favorite short stories are- I know what you need, Children of the corn. King once again managed to deliver bone chilling, dark thoughts for his loyal fans.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago