Friday, August 25, 2017

{Re-Read Review} IT by Stephen King

Goodreads Summary:

To the children, the town was their whole world. To the adults, knowing better, Derry, Maine was just their home town: familiar, well-ordered for the most part. A good place to live.

It was the children who saw - and felt - what made Derry so horribly different. In the storm drains, in the sewers, IT lurked, taking on the shape of every nightmare, each one's deepest dread. Sometimes IT reached up, seizing, tearing, killing . . .

The adults, knowing better, knew nothing.

Time passed and the children grew up, moved away. The horror of IT was deep-buried, wrapped in forgetfulness. Until they were called back, once more to confront IT as IT stirred and coiled in the sullen depths of their memories, reaching up again to make their past nightmares a terrible present reality.

Mandy's Review:

I chose to re-read this novel before the first movie comes out September 8th. My first reading of IT was when I was 13 and, maybe because a large portion of the story centers around children close to my age at that time, it resonated with me. My re-reading of IT did not diminish my love for this novel. It enhanced it.

If, for some ungodly reason, you have never read IT and have no clue what it's about, I'll give you the gist of it. Basically, there is a cycle of evil that takes place every 25 to 27 years in Derry, Maine. (Side Note: The new movie comes out 27 years after the horrendous television mini series. Coincidence? I think not.) In 1958, through (seemingly) preordained circumstances, seven children form a group and are known as the Losers. The bond between them felt more than just the bond of friendship, it felt almost supernatural. Despite their fears, they are determined to face down the evil residing in Derry and kill it. Only when they're called back to Derry 27 years later in 1985 do they realize they only hurt it the first time. This time, they won't stop until they're dead or IT is.

Most people who have not read this novel don't want to read it because of the clown and their fear of it. The evil in Derry manifests as a clown BECAUSE people have a fear of clowns, but the evil in Derry is a shapeshifter. The reason it mainly preys on children is because of a child's innate belief in all that is fantastic and strange. So, when a child hears something scary in the dark, they relate that sound to something (a werewolf, or mummy, or a rat, etc.) and whatever they BELIEVE the sound to be coming from that's what the evil in Derry transforms itself to.

So, yet again, I have laughed, sat in suspense, and have been heartbroken by this novel. When I got near the end of the book last night, I was thinking to myself, "NO! No, I have to go back! I have to go back to when they were kids playing in the Barrens and forming their circle of friendship. I don't want this to end!"

To those who wonder how in the world I can be heartbroken by a horror novel, I'll tell you: the same way you (and I) were heartbroken over Harry Potter. Like Harry Potter was about more than just magic, IT is about more than just an evil clown. It's about a child's guileless belief in all things, it's about how adults grow up and become adept at glancing over evil happening right in front of them, it's about how as children grow they forget the wonderful magic they were tapped in to, and it's also about how we often forget those that helped us the most during our darkest times. To say IT is about nothing but evil and horror is not doing this novel justice. It's also about love, faith, beauty, simplicity, and power. It's about something outside of us yielding its power over us, whether it be evil or good. God, I could talk all day about this but I'll stop now. You just have to give this a chance if you haven't read it before. Look beyond the obvious and see IT for what it really is.


  1. Great review of one of my favorites. I loved the TV miniseries (the 4-hour version before it was hacked up for a 2-hour time slot). It starred some of my favorite actors (Richard Thomas, Annette O'Toole, John Ritter and Tim Reid)and included most of what was in the book. That said, I'm looking forward to the new movie version and hope it doesn't lose too much from the book. Thanks again!

    1. Thanks! =) I wasn't a fan of the TV miniseries at all but I have high hopes for the 2017 movie.


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