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Carrie by Stephen King
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Carrie (edition 2002)

by Stephen King

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8,200164382 (3.7)285
KindleKapers's review
So, if you've ever considered bullying the outcast kid or not telling your teenage daughter what to expect when she officially hits puberty, this is the book that will change your mind forever! ;)

I saw the movie starring Sissy Spacek as Carrie many years ago, but since this was Stephen King's first published novel, I really wanted to actually read it. ...and as is the case with so many books-that-have-been-turned-into-movies, the book is so much better due the details provided, and the terrifying emotions evoked. I loved the way King alternated his writing styles, mixing third-person narrative with excerpts from legal depositions and first-person witness accounts, thus giving the reader opportunity to greater understand the events and psychology that led up to a nightmarish Prom Night in a small town in Maine. ( )
1 vote KindleKapers | May 26, 2012 |
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I saw the movie a couple of years ago and I thought it was ok, nothing that special. Not even a really good horror movie. So I never bothered to read the books. Well that was a mistake because the book is so much better than the movie…well that’s a hardly surprising, movies are seldom better than the book. Carrie is not a horror book in its essence, yes it has elements of horror, but mostly the book is just a tragic tale of girl who finally snaps, who after years of abuse, both at home and in school just finally just not going to take it anymore and she has power.


So she unleash hell. Big Time!



( )
  MaraBlaise | Dec 11, 2014 |
Stephen Kingin ensimmäinen teos on helppolukuinen, eikä kauhean pelottava. Mielenkiitoinen näkökulma siihen, miten kiusaaminen vaikuttaa ihmiseen. ( )
  marintala | Dec 6, 2014 |
I gave it 4 stars mainly because of the writing, it's just brilliant! It's pretty amazing how many things are happening simultaneously in the story without being confusing at all. However, I must admit that there were some boring sections and that's why I didn't give it 5 stars. ( )
  Araceli.Arias | Oct 24, 2014 |
I couldn't help but think that this was the Cinderella story as told by one really sick puppy. A great book, though. You can see Stephen King coming out of the chute a very strong writer and I don't think he ever really slowed down. -1996 ( )
  AliceAnna | Oct 19, 2014 |
one of my favorites. great characters and hard to put down ( )
  jodiesohl | Sep 14, 2014 |
I am glad I found this lying lost around the book store and you want to know why? Because this is BRUTAL in every sense. I wasn't too excited about it at first, because I know Carrie, I've watch all her movie adaptations all the crappy sequels, but who'd think the book would get me going so much?
The book contains several interruptions to mention arcticles from other books, which at first I thought was something only my copy contained. At first I even ignored them but when I understood what they actually were there for I went back to read them again. The thing about this book is, it's not a book about Carrie. It is a book about the phenomenon of which she was the protagonist. I found it all very interesting, especially since I imagined it all happening around me, all those newspaper arcticles, survivor rants. What if it had really happened? I kept on craving more and more every page.
Carrie White. What a girl. Opressed by her religious mother and brought up in an unhealthy environment, has her first period at age 16 during gym class, surrounded by girls who believed they were already grown women despite not deserving it. But that event is what started it all. Carrie had more power than you could have guessed and what happens when the powerful considered weak lose their temper? Prom Night. Bloooooody Prom Night.
(Flex)
I recommend this for anyone looking for light horror and good entertainment. It was also the first Stephen King I read, and despite some harsh vocabulary, it is pretty managable.
(Flex)
(Flex)
I will keep on adding this everywhere until it works.
(Flex) ( )
  sarafwilliams | Sep 13, 2014 |
I am glad I found this lying lost around the book store and you want to know why? Because this is BRUTAL in every sense. I wasn't too excited about it at first, because I know Carrie, I've watch all her movie adaptations all the crappy sequels, but who'd think the book would get me going so much?
The book contains several interruptions to mention arcticles from other books, which at first I thought was something only my copy contained. At first I even ignored them but when I understood what they actually were there for I went back to read them again. The thing about this book is, it's not a book about Carrie. It is a book about the phenomenon of which she was the protagonist. I found it all very interesting, especially since I imagined it all happening around me, all those newspaper arcticles, survivor rants. What if it had really happened? I kept on craving more and more every page.
Carrie White. What a girl. Opressed by her religious mother and brought up in an unhealthy environment, has her first period at age 16 during gym class, surrounded by girls who believed they were already grown women despite not deserving it. But that event is what started it all. Carrie had more power than you could have guessed and what happens when the powerful considered weak lose their temper? Prom Night. Bloooooody Prom Night.
(Flex)
I recommend this for anyone looking for light horror and good entertainment. It was also the first Stephen King I read, and despite some harsh vocabulary, it is pretty managable.
(Flex)
(Flex)
I will keep on adding this everywhere until it works.
(Flex) ( )
  sarafwilliams | Sep 13, 2014 |
The more I read Stephen King, the less sure I am that I actually like Stephen King, and also the more I read Stephen King, the more I want to read Stephen King. It's a weird relationship. ( )
  sighedtosleep | Sep 1, 2014 |
Carrie is a girl with telekinetic powers who has been isolated from her community due to the crazy reputation of her mother. Her mother has kept her sheltered and taught her extreme religions views and opinions.

All of this made going to high school a traumatic experience for her. Especially when the torture and traumatic times seem to occur on a daily basis.

Everything comes together and she finally explodes with rage, taking it out on anyone and everyone who has ever caused her pain.

It just so happens that the whole town has bullied her, so Carrie has a vendetta against a large amount of people.

I'd give this book 5/5 for an classic original King horror book. ( )
  lizasarusrex | Sep 1, 2014 |
For a Stephen King book, I thought this one was slightly weak. But considering the circumstances in which the book was written (being his first published book), I thought it was pretty good. It's about a girl with telekinetic powers named Carrie, who is cruelly humiliated during a graduation party and decides to take revenge for all the bullying she had to endure. The book has several kinds of narrative: one in third-person plus interviews and a couple of excerpts from documentaries and newspapers.

Considering King's vivacity in the descriptions, I think I was waiting for more violence and cruelty from Carrie, specially considering that the first part of the book is almost real. I also missed her own point of view when she lost her mind. I'd like to know what she was thinking when she was finally able to avenge herself against the ones that humiliated her during her entire life... and even against the ones that did nothing wrong against her. I felt that Carrie was somewhat "forgotten", which is kinda sad because King seemed to take a special care in developing each of his characters, from Carrie's mother to the classmates.

The book itself is short and quick to be read, although the interviews and documentaries seem to slow down the story a little.

An interesting reading, mandatory for Stephen King fans. But definitely not his best book. ( )
  aryadeschain | Aug 26, 2014 |
Just as amazing as I've always been told it is. Loved the character development. I felt sorry for Carrie. ( )
  KRaySaulis | Aug 13, 2014 |
Even if you've never read this book or seen either of the movie adaptations, the odds are good that you know more or less how it goes: Teenage girl is abused and humiliated by both her religious-nut mother and the popular girls at school. Girl develops telekinetic powers. Everything ends in blood and catastrophe on prom night. (And if you diddn't, well, none of that is particularly spoilery, in any case, as King basically tells you right from the beginning how it's all going to end.)

This was King's first novel, and I do think it shows. The writing isn't terribly polished, and the levels of horror and tension are well below the heights that King, at his best, is capable of. Plus, he seems to have conjured up Carrie and her classmates from memories of his own youth in the 50s and 60s, which makes everything feel slightly off for a story supposedly set in 1979.

All that having been said, though, there is something about it that strikes a chord; it certainly resonated with my own painful memories of school bullying. And, although she's really only a very lightly-sketched character, it is impossible not to feel empathy for poor Carrie. So, while this is by no means a great book -- I'd categorize it more as "okay" -- I can understand, I think, how it lodged itself so firmly into popular consciousness and started Stephen King off on his career of being Stephen King. ( )
1 vote bragan | Aug 5, 2014 |
I did wonder whether Stephen King's first published novel would be a mild, toe-in-the-water, version of what followed. It isn't. Carrie is a full-on mixture of the elements of anger, fear, sadness, abuse and the supernatural that are found in his later books. And it's a good mixture.
Through various sources, retrospective and in-the-moment, we follow the story of Carrie. Carrie has always taken abuse from everyone around her, and at some point she will inevitably snap. As it happens, Carrie has some special powers which could easily make her snap something out of the ordinary.

This is a very well done "impending doom" story which meticulously builds up the various elements of the story before it reaches the conclusion. A very worthwhile and enjoyable read. ( )
  clq | Jul 31, 2014 |
I think that a lot of my doubts and fears of high school were planted in me by this book.

Absolutely terrifying. ( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
I think that a lot of my doubts and fears of high school were planted in me by this book.

Absolutely terrifying. ( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
Advertencia: Después de leer éste libro jamás volverás a ver a "Matilda" con los mismos ojos.


Carrie es, extrañamente, el personaje más humano que he leído. La compadeces, la aborreces, le agarras cariño, la odias. La entiendes.

Aplausos para King. ( )
  Glire | Jul 7, 2014 |
Great Book ( )
  heyitsnathan11 | May 23, 2014 |
I am told that this was the novel that made Stephen King the famous writer that he is today. The story that I was told was that Hollywood was looking for a story with a strong female role to turn into a movie, and they happened upon this book and decided to buy the rights off of King to turn it into a movie. Obviously King accepted their proposal (otherwise there wouldn't have been a movie based on this novel, and King probably would not have become so famous). In fact this was King's first novel and Wikipedia suggests that he actually had thrown it into the bin when his wife pulled it out and encouraged him to finish it. Well, I must admire his wife for giving him a kick where it was needed otherwise he would have not even become a footnote in history. Some would probably suggest otherwise, but as I have said previously, I do not think King is a bad author, and his use of the horror genre is actually quite thought provoking.
Horror is a lot more than just monsters and ghosts running around killing people, and to be honest, that type of horror is pretty bad horror in my view (let's call it schlock horror). It is what one expects from Hollywood movies such a Fright Night, Nightmare on Elm Street and the millions of other movies that are cut from the same mould. King does not write novels like that, and of many of the movies that I have seen from his writings, he does not use that standard device to write his horror. The genre has been around for quite a while, and it is only in recent times that it has degenerated into this particular mould, and while I am not going to say that King resurrected it from this mould, I will say that he has a better understanding of traditional horror than do many Hollywood writers.
Horror is about our fears, and while we may fear some rampaging monster storming through our town destroying anything in its path, that is not necessarily horror. Fear can take any form, whether it be of imprisonment, alienation, or simply being rejected from society. Carrie takes the form of being rejected from society, and that is because she is different. In this story she is different because she has psychic powers, and it is not necessarily that she is fearful but rather that others are fearful of her. People fear being threatened, and even if the threat is unfounded, they will act to remove that threat. Take minority populations for instance. Minorities are always threatened that they are going to be overrun by a majority population, and as such will act to prevent the majority from doing so. We have seen this happen throughout the twentieth century, and usually when that happens, the persecution of a weak majority can have the effect of causing that majority to rise up. Take Iraq for instance. Up until the American Invasion, the minority Sunni ruled the country, and would act against the majority Shiite population of the south. Dare I say that we also see this struggle between the white and Negro populations of America? In fact, some cultures have actively prevented majority populations from breeding in an attempt to prevent them from overrunning the country (and the biblical book of Exodus has a well known story about that type of action).
In this story though it is a minority that is persecuted, that being Carrie. However despite being a minority she is an incredibly powerful person, and it is her psychic powers that scare people. In a way, one could say that the horror in this novel is the horror of being different. We don't want to be different, we want to be the same, we want to be like everybody else. If we are like everybody else there is nothing anybody else can or will do to us for being different. However sometimes it is impossible not to stand out from the crowd, though if we are weaker it is easier to persecute and alienate us than if we are stronger.
I guess that is why intelligent people tend to be persecuted at school. People fear intelligence, and in fearing intelligence they will attack it and attempt to undermine it. The jocks, for want of a better word, will push the geeks around, beat them up, and give them royal flushes. Yes, the geek is generally weaker than the jock, but physical weakness is made up by intellectual strength. However, the sad thing is (and this is very true in my case) is that we can react to that by dumbing ourselves down. We don't like to be different or alienated, so we will hide what we can hide from our persecutors. However, we can react in a different way, as Carrie does, and lash out in violence. That, indeed, is the wrong way to react because in the end it plays into the hands of the persecutors.
One example that I will use is the Columbine Highschool Massacre (though, as it has been pointed out to me, may not necessarily have been the truth). In that situation a group of boys, known as the Trenchcoat Mafia, were harassed, persecuted, and alienated. One day, after they had had enough, they got their fathers' guns, stormed the school, and went on a killing rampage. Who, in the end, are the bad guys in this story? The murders of course because the persecuted had turned around and become the persecutors. Yet we quickly forgot and ignore the reason why they snapped, and lay the blame of societies problems at their feet. I have heard Christian leaders proclaim how they went out specifically targetting Christians? Did they? Truth be told I do not know, however, the fact that they are now dead, they do not have the opportunity to defend themselves. Hell, even if they were locked up, they would lose the opportunity to defend themselves. What I am showing here is that there is a right way and a wrong way to deal with persecution, and lashing out at it is the wrong way. Carrie pretty much destroys the town, but it ends badly, very badly for her. The Trenchcoat Mafia left a huge impact in the Colorado Springs highschool, but it also ended very badly for them. Their persecutors have been vindicated, while they have been demonised.
See, we can learn something about ourselves and the world around us in a book written by Stephen King. ( )
  David.Alfred.Sarkies | Apr 24, 2014 |
Beginning a Stephen King reading project - first one down and it was excellent. ( )
  JonathanCrites | Apr 22, 2014 |
The phrase "dirty pillows" still haunts me. ( )
  LisaFoxRomance | Apr 6, 2014 |
Not much more I can say about this book. It was heart-pumpingly good. I really got into it. It is an awesome horror novel. I'm glad I decided to read this one out of the other Stephen King books I've got on my list.
Oh and I think what made this more thrilling for me is that my senoir formal is on in like 3 weeks so the idea of everything going insane on that night is horrifying. I don't think I thought it through; reading this book now but anyways it is still an awesome book. I would probably read it again if I didn't have such a big list of books to read.

It was pretty imaginative that she could read peoples mind like at the end with Sue and going through her mind like file cabinets. That was an interesting tidbit.
I also thought her mother in the story was conveyed really well and added to the shock horror value of the book.

Although I didn't get scared, my heart started going crazy, like I was in the prom or feeling Carrie. It was intense but awesome. ( )
  bethie-paige | Jan 29, 2014 |
around 2.5 stars, but i'm slightly biased. i'm doing a re/reading of all of stephen king's books, in the order he wrote them (except for sequels, which will be read after the book they follow) and this is his first publication. it shows. it's his style, his voice, his imagination, his use of language and grammar, and even his character perspective. and it's all underdeveloped but totally shows his potential and where he's going in the future. the story itself is a bit overdramatic and less fleshed out than i'm used to with him, but not too poorly so. if it was the first of his books i'd ever read, i'm not sure how many more i'd pick up, but i wouldn't dismiss him out of hand either. i think it shows a good start, and lots of room for improvement. and his classic ending that i love so much. ( )
1 vote elisa.saphier | Jan 23, 2014 |
The story of Carrie's prom night, like the identity of Luke Skywalker's father and the origin of Soylent Green, exists in my brain as part of a prepackaged set of pop cultural facts I've always known but never remember learning about. So finally reading this book felt more like reading a retelling of a well-known fairy tale than an original novel that launched Stephen King's career.

In this case, foreknowledge of the plot didn't ruin the book for me. The story's iconic scene happens halfway through the book, so there was more to the plot before and after that than what I knew about. Also, scattered throughout the story are news articles, interviews, and excerpts from other sources that were all written after prom night, which means you're told about every major event before it happens. So the point of the main story is just to fill in the details and show you how it happened from the main characters' points of view.

Even after overcoming all that, I still thought the story was mediocre. Maybe it was a fresh concept when it came out, but now it's a pretty formulaic revenge fantasy. I was pleased to find that there were a few students besides Carrie with some depth, although more of them are the standard jeering bullies that you'd expect to see in this kind of story. The tone is dated, and although that's gives the story a quaint small-town feel at times, the dialogue here doesn't sound like anything a high schooler in any time would say. Also, does every Stephen King book have a crazy religious zealot for an antagonist, or have I randomly only read those ones?

I'm glad I could fill in this pop cultural gap, but I wouldn't say this is one of the better Stephen King books I've read. Certainly it's high of the list of scary coming-of-age stories, though. ( )
1 vote thatpirategirl | Jan 16, 2014 |
It's been so long since I actually read Carrie that I forgot much of the action. Being treated to the audio version... with SISSY SPACEK reading was phenomenal!

This is horror at its very best. It is filled with pathos and Stephen King does a great job of getting inside the heads of teenagers wanting to fit in. Carrie is such a sad and pathetic character, but even so she has an incredible life force and will to belong. Sissy Spacek brings her to life, along with all of the other characters. She makes you experience everything the characters are feeling. She does a remarkable job with her narration.

My only complaint is in her pronunciation of 2 words. The H is silent in Thibodaux and you rifle through a desk or someone's belongings... you don't riffle. Sissy should know better. But if those are the only things I can find to criticize, I can tell you that this is a good good book and it read by a great narrator.

If you like audiobooks, you can't go wrong with this one. ( )
  enemyanniemae | Jan 8, 2014 |
For me, this wasn't King's best. I had no bond with the main character and even never having seen the movie, the book itself made it quite clear what was going to happen. In that respect, it reminded me of Nineteen minutes by Jodi Picoult. The story was told in the same way, you already know what's going to happen, you just need to find out how it happens and you mostly find out by accounts from people who were there. I didn't think it was scary at all, but it was interesting.

I think the people from the book were concentrating on the wrong things in the end, by the way. Everyone was wondering what to do if someone like Carrie were ever to be born again, and considering whether they could confine such a person or whether they should kill her. What they should have been thinking about is how to prevent someone as crazy as Carrie's mother ever raising another kid again, be it with telekinetic abilities or not. The answer about what to do seems clear to me: make sure any new telekinetic is raised well and grows up to be a happy and balanced person. ( )
  zjakkelien | Dec 27, 2013 |
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