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The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty
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The Exorcist (1971)

by William Peter Blatty

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2,710692,176 (3.86)129
  1. 11
    Legion by William Peter Blatty (JonTheTerrible)
    JonTheTerrible: I quite enjoyed the characters in The Exorcist and felt that Legion gives you a bit more of the enjoyable Kinderman as well as the darkness of the demon. While Legion is not nearly as good as its predecessor it is still an essential read if you enjoyed the mood and pace of The Exorcist.… (more)
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Showing 1-5 of 64 (next | show all)
This was so scary I couldn't finish it!
  ElizabethBevins | May 6, 2014 |
I came to this book as someone who had never really heard the story, nor had I seen the movie. I knew that it was supposed to be scary, but I was unfamiliar with the details. After reading it, I must say that I am impressed! It seems to live up (mostly) to its reputation as a very good scary story (though I don't know if I would agree with the cover and call it the "most terrifying story" that I've ever read).

The writing itself is easy to read and doesn't bog the reader down in piles of unnecessary details, which I appreciated for this book in particular, because I really wanted to move the story along and find out how it ended.

The story, despite the supernatural content, seems very realistic. The characters' determination to find logical explanations for supernatural events was frustrating (as the reader knows that what's happening is certainly not natural) and believable at the same time. At first, I disliked one of the characters because I found her to be somewhat weak and hysterical, but, when I reflected on it a bit, it occurred to me that the vast majority of people who found themselves in her situation would react in much the same way, if not even more hysterically.

The one part of the story that turned me off a bit was the ending. I don't intend to go into too much detail about it, but I'll protect it with a spoiler warning just in case.

To me, the ending seemed very anticlimactic and left the reader feeling unsatisfied. It felt like a quick cop-out after the long journey it took to get there, because there are enormous questions left unanswered. This is one thing if there is going to be a sequel that will eventually clear up these questions, but this is not the case for The Exorcist. I also found that the absence of law enforcement at the end seemed unrealistic. I can't believe that, with everything that happened and how long the case went on, the police department would just leave the whole thing in the hands of one detective and never check up on it nor send anyone else to investigate.

Overall, The Exorcist is a very good, truly scary story that (mostly) seems to realistically depict what might happen in the case of a real-life possession. 4/5 ( )
  athenaharmony | Apr 27, 2014 |
The first half of this book is TERRIBLY written. It was so bad that I almost couldn't get through it, the second half reads a little better, but I really think that the reason for this is that it's where the action picks up. This is -definitely- a circumstance where the movie is better than the book. Just watch the movie. Skip this travesty. ( )
  steadfastreader | Mar 18, 2014 |
I love creepy books, so I thought I would give The Exorcist a try, especially since I've never seen the movie so I'm leading into the book with no preconceived notions. I wasn't disappointed - definitely creepy and not for the faint-hearted. Not an everyday book for sure, but I enjoyed reading it. Just imagining the events of the book in my mind was disturbing, and I would like to watch the film and see the novel brought to life. ( )
  NicoleGorr | Mar 10, 2014 |
"The Exorcist" was one of the scariest movies I've ever seen. It's difficult to say if the book would have been equally chilling, having read it nearly 40 years after seeing the movie around age 20. But it's a suspenseful and finely-crafted story, with occasional passages of lyrical resonance that lift the book from horror into literature.

The story, about a young girl who gradually becomes possessed by an ancient and evil entity, is based on an exorcism that took place in St. Louis. I've read that making this movie caused some psychic distress for Linda Blair, the young actress who played Regan. That may be apocryphal, as she did make a couple of sequels (really bad movies, too). There is, of course, more to the book than the movie. But they are quite faithful to each other, and both stand as landmarks in the American horror genre. ( )
  burnit99 | Nov 6, 2013 |
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To my brothers and sisters, Maurice, Edward and Alyce, and in loving memory of my parents.
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Like the brief doomed flare of exploding suns that registers dimly on blind men's eyes, the beginning of the horror passed almost unnoticed; in the shriek of what followed, in fact, was forgotten and perhaps not connected to the horror at all.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0061007226, Mass Market Paperback)

When originally published in 1971, The Exorcist became not only a bestselling literary phenomenon, but one of the most frightening and controversial novels ever written. (When the author adapted his book to the screen two years later, it then became one of the most terrifying movies ever made.) The deceptively simple story focuses on Regan, the 11-year-old daughter of a movie actress residing in Washington, D.C.; the child apparently is possessed by an ancient demon. It's up to a small group of overwhelmed yet determined humans to somehow rescue Regan from this unspeakable fate. Purposefully raw and profane, this novel still has the extraordinary ability to literally shock us into forgetting that it is "just a story." The Exorcist remains a truly unforgettable reading experience. Blatty published a sequel, Legion, in 1983. --Stanley Wiater

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:34:14 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Actress and single mother Chris MacNeil becomes increasingly terrified for her young daughter Regan as a malevolent force takes possession of the child.

» see all 6 descriptions

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