Thursday, July 29, 2010

Jessi Reviews "The Dead Zone"

Title/Author: The Dead Zone by Stephen King

Publisher/Year: Signet, 1983
How I got this: It was a Christmas gift a few years back!
Why I read it: Stephen King is one of my favs!
Rating: 5 Stars

Y'know, I read this before, I must have been 14, but for the life of me, when I began re-reading this, I could not remember a thing about it. I guess that wasn't all so bad, but I admit, it had me scared because I thought that if I couldn't remember it, then maybe it wasn't that great.

Boy, was I wrong! This is the Stephen King that I know and love. I don't even know where to begin with all of the stuff that I loved about this book.

First of all, this book goes to show that old Uncle Steve doesn't just write about things that go bump in the night. Not that I find his other books hokey (because I DON'T), but for the skeptic, this book is the prime example of how he can take a seemingly unbelievable idea and make it absolutely believable.

I also loved how he portrayed Johnny's ability. To put it simply, after waking up from a four and a half year coma, Johnny has this ability to know things about people by touching them--he can tell things about them, but he can also locate lost things (and people) and can even experience small flashes of insight into the future. Great, right? Wrong. This ability isn't all it's cracked up to be, and I find it great that SK shows that while it can be truly helpful and life-saving at times, it is also a torturous curse for Johnny. This is especially true when he sees a vision of the future under the control of a conniving, maniacal politician. It brings to rise the question: If you could go back to 1932, would you kill Hitler? Consequences, consequences, and a dilemma to beat all dilemmas--I LOVE it.

And again, of course, this man is master of characterization. From the main characters to the most minor characters, SK has a handle on them all. You can tell that he spends a lot of time on his writing, and it absolutely shines. Once again, SK has created a cast of characters who I hold near and dear. I could go on and on about this book, I really could, but I think I'll just leave it at what I said before--this is the Stephen King that I know and love!

Oh, and I particularly enjoyed the references to Carrie and 'Salem's Lot. Those kind of connections always make me giggle and I feel like they're a sort of shout-out and a thank you to his Constant Readers.

I would definitely recommend this one to those who haven't read anything by Uncle Steve before and definitely for King fans who haven't picked up this gem yet.


  1. Stephen King is one of those authors that I've never read before but I know that I would like! I just know I would but I never know where to start. Where do you think would be a good place for me to start?

  2. I too have never read anything by Stephen King. I've always wanted to try Carrie, but this one sounds good too. Good review!

  3. I've been meaning to read this one forever, but have somehow never actually got around to doing so. Does anyone else remember the TV show that was based on this book? I think I only started watching it because it starred Anthony Michael Hall (of Breakfast Club fame) but it was actually a pretty decent series. Thanks for the review and bringing this one back up on my radar!

  4. Jamie and Kelly--Carrie would be a good place to start, but I have to say you really can't go wrong with any of his earlier books like The Shining, Pet Sematary, or Salem's Lot.

    Lisa--I never watched the TV show, but I have been meaning to watch it ever since finishing this. I'm curious how the show and the book compare!

  5. I tried reading this one a few years ago and got stalled. I want to try picking up this one again and give Carrie a shot, too. Stephen King has always been an author I've mostly shied away from just due to the sheer volume of his catalog!

  6. I really love this author...
    since i was 12years old, it has been my favourite one...

    Especially Misery, It, and Shining...
    I don't have read "Dead Zone", I only knox de TV serie...

    Have a nice day


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