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It (1986)

by Stephen King

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
16,670324203 (4.08)1 / 566
It is a small city, a place as hauntingly familiar as your own hometown. Only, in Derry, the haunting is real. They were just kids when they first stumbled upon the horror. Now they are grown-up men and women who have gone out into the big world to gain success and happiness. But none of them can withstand the force that has drawn them back to Derry to face the nightmare without an end, the evil without a name.… (more)
Recently added byjcrn, nandiniseshadri, Thander, BookHavenAZ, hileymh, Ahdom, wduncan, private library, wduncan2
  1. 151
    Summer of Night by Dan Simmons (amyblue, msouliere)
  2. 111
    Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury (Locke)
    Locke: Both novels deal with themes of childhood horrors and coming of age. Both have a subtle melancholy tone!
  3. 70
    11/22/63 by Stephen King (sturlington)
    sturlington: A section of 11/22/63 is set in Derry and features characters from It.
  4. 50
    The Guardians by Andrew Pyper (lippylibrarian)
    lippylibrarian: Both books feature a group of childhood friends returning to face the horrors of their small hometown after the suicide of a close friend.
  5. 61
    Phantoms by Dean Koontz (caimanjosh)
    caimanjosh: Koontz's take on the shape-shifting monster is more scientific, less epic/supernatural, but entertaining too.
  6. 20
    NOS4A2 by Joe Hill (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Malevolent entities that prey upon children are the driving force of these creepy, suspenseful horror stories. In both novels, only adults lucky enough to escape the villain's clutches in childhood are later able to battle the evil when it returns.… (more)
  7. 31
    Stinger by Robert R. McCammon (Scottneumann)
  8. 31
    Carrion Comfort by Dan Simmons (Scottneumann)
  9. 21
    Straight on 'Til Morning by Christopher Golden (mniday)
  10. 10
    Vigilantes #1: Het teken by Gaudin (comtso)
    comtso: Des amis d'enfance, devenus adultes, se retrouvent pour affronter un ennemi de leur passé. Pour réussir, ils doivent retrouver ce en quoi ils croyaient enfants.
  11. 10
    The Glister by John Burnside (Jthierer)
  12. 33
    Harbor by John Ajvide Lindqvist (2810michael)
  13. 22
    Floating Dragon by Peter Straub (sturlington)
    sturlington: Both are about a small town infected by an evil influence.
  14. 12
    The Pilo Family Circus by Will Elliott (ShelfMonkey)
1980s (43)
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English (304)  Italian (5)  Dutch (4)  German (2)  French (2)  Swedish (1)  Portuguese (1)  Norwegian (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (321)
Showing 1-5 of 304 (next | show all)
I read "It" many years ago when I was a kid. I also had nightmares for about a week about a clown that was under my bed chanting that "we all float down here." too. So thanks for that Stephen King. Though I find "It" brilliant and often cite this one as my favorite King book, there are still some problems with it that are hard to gloss over during my re-read decades later. You all at this point should know about one scene that pretty much had every reader going WTF. My WTF this time made me actually cringe while reading. It makes zero sense to the story and could have been edited out long ago. Also the flow isn't that great when we go back and forth between our gang called the Losers Club (Bill, Richie, Eddie, Stan, Ben, Beverly, and Mike) and other characters. The book truly shines when King looks at these characters as kids, they seem to fall apart a bit when we get to see them grown up and facing with their return to Derry.

"It" was published in 1986. I read this when I was 10 (which would make that 1990) due to the television series coming out. I remember thinking that the series was the best showing the kids and it all kind of went to pot when we see them as adults confronting It again. There are some nice Easter eggs for constant readers to other King works ("Dreamcatcher", "11/22/63", "The Dark Tower", and of course King's latest "The Outsider").

There are a lot of characters in this book, so let's focus on just The Losers Club for this review. King shines when he shows us how this group of 7 kids came together and routed the boogeyman/monster that was hell-bent on murdering kids.

Bill is essentially the leader of the club. When his younger brother Georgie is murdered, Bill is determined to kill "It." I was rooting for Bill throughout this book though there is some weirdness between about the fact that the woman he marries resembles Beverly (yeesh).

Beverly (Bev) is the only girl in The Losers Club and has red hair. Each boy has a crush on her at some point during this story. I only bring this up because I watched Season Two of Stranger Things last year and the girl that joins the cast is called Max in the show. She's a tomboy and you can tell her home life is a hot mess. She also has red hair. While watching Stranger Things I started thinking about Bev from this book and how similar both characters were.

The other boys in this story don't stand out as much as Bill and Beverly though. Ben I thought was great as well. A lonely and overweight boy, he ends up being a very successful adult. Richie ends up becoming a DJ. I felt sorry for Eddie and Stan and Mike the most though.

Going into the secondary characters (people who tormented this group as kids and later as adults) gets a bit boring after a while. I thought King does a great job with the horror elements as well as the fantasy elements. Everything you read seems possible.

The writing was very good though the flow gets clunky towards the end. At first you feel relief when you read about what the kids end up going through in the 1950s. I think King made a mistake though going back to the past and present (1980s) after each other though. After a while I wanted the story to hurry up and get going.

Derry, Maine is the setting of "It" and seriously at this point you have to wonder about anyone living in that town. I do love reading this book mostly since this is the start of Derry being the place where funky/crazy things happen. We do get a sequel of sorts to this book in "11/22/63" where the main character in that book comes across some of the Losers.

I thought the ending was so good, but once again sadness cause you have to know if this is a King novel not everyone makes it. ( )
  ObsidianBlue | Jul 1, 2020 |
I first read this book as a young teenager, I think I was 13, after I had watched the mini series. The mini series had scared the living daylights out of me, but when I found the book in our local library, I wanted to read it. I remember that I found the book quite scary as well.
I've read the book twice since, and still can't quite believe I actually read it at such a young age.

Anyway...There are parts of this book I love. I love the entire 1958 story. I love their friendship, the way things were written down. Parts of the 1985 scenes held my interest as well. But this book is loooooooong. And while sometimes I could easily keep on reading, towards the end it became a struggle. Maybe because I knew what was coming. It's still a great novel, I just think 1200 pages is too much. The story could have been told in less than a 1000 pages, without losing its magic. ( )
  prettygoodyear | Jun 29, 2020 |
Been frightened of this for years--film mostly...
Book is reading terrifically(am especially enjoying the short story interweaves), may have forgotten just how well King performed his craft. ( )
  CurioCollective | Jun 25, 2020 |
This is my favourite Stephen King book. Just writing this makes me want to read it again ;p ( )
  Tara_Calaby | Jun 22, 2020 |
Like so many others I seem to run across, I read this when I was just a kid and again when I was older, unconsciously mirroring the characters in this book. Coincidence? Or fate?

Either way, I got my pants scared off me both times. We all float down here, I think.

IT, probably more than any of Stephen King's other works, is the scariest book he ever wrote, and if it wasn't for that one major flaw, a particular scene near the end, I would go on and on and on about how this book will always be an utter classic till the end of time.

I mean, it's jammed with bucketfuls of fantastically scary scenes, characters that are super memorable and are so easy to get fully invested in, and a town that rivals most science fiction for its sheer world-building majesty. And it's not only these things, but it's the story. It's one for the ages. It's also timeless and very much centered on the times of '58 and '85 and it's impossible not to be immersed.

I also think I can blame SK for making all clowns scary. I can also blame him for Rowling's ideas in Prisoner, too. Or the big bad in Full Metal Alchemist. But even better, I can trace my undying love for SK back to this book and the full realization that all his early works and a ton of his later ones are all connected in one gigantic web of ideas.

Of course, I laughed when someone made a comment about being put away in Shawshank. I shivered when the ghost of Christine graced the page. Even the Crimson King and the sense of all the universes crashing down showed up here.

But best of all, there was Derry. What a town!

It eats children.

*shiver*

Like I said, if it wasn't for that one flaw, I'd be raving that this is just one of those major works of imagination that should never be missed by anyone who reads anything at all. Just snipping out that scene would make this more than a classic. IT would be truly and not figuratively, be timeless. :)

Move aside, Pet Sematary. Stand. Gunslinger. This here book is wicked awesome and probably the reason why I fell in love with reading and wanting to be a writer for real. Anyone who could do this to someone from the other side of a page is a god. :) ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 304 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
King, Stephenprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dobner, TullioTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Giusti, RobertCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Körber, JoachimTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reinhardt, Alexandra vonÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rekiaro, IlkkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rekiaro, PäiviTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Weber, StevenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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It (1990IMDb)
It (2017IMDb)
Awards and honors
Epigraph
"This old town been home long as I remember, This town gonna be here long after I'm gone. East side west side take a close look 'round her, You been down but you're still in my bones." -- The Michael Stanley Band
"Old friend, what are you looking for? After those many years abroad you come With images you tended Under foreign skies Far away from your own land." -- George Seferis
"Out of the blue and into the black." -- Neil Young
Dedication
This book is gratefully dedicated to my children.
My mother and my wife taught me how to be a man. My children taught me how to be free.

Naomi Rachel King, at fourteen;

Joseph Hillstrom King, at twelve;

Owen Philip King, at seven.

Kids, fiction is the truth inside the lie, and the truth of this fiction is simple enough: the magic exists

S.K.
First words
The terror, which would not end for another twenty-eight years - if it ever did end - began, so far as I know or can tell, with a boat made out of a sheet of newspaper floating down a gutter swollen with rain.
Quotations
Be true, be brave, stand. All the rest is darkness.
We all float down here.
If there are certain preconditions for the use of magic, then those preconditions will inevitably arrange themselves.
“A child blind from birth doesn't even know he's blind until someone tells him. Even then
he has only the most academic idea of what blindness is; only the formerly sighted have a
real grip on the thing”
“We lie
best when we lie to ourselves.”
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
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Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

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Wikipedia in English (1)

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Book description
Seven children band together to fight a creature that has been feeding off the fears of the people in the small town of Derry for generations.
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