Book Review: Salem’s Lot

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By Charlie DePoala, Staff Writer

Throughout my reading experiences, Stephen King as an author has rarely failed me, and Salem’s Lot is no exception. Taking place in a backwater town in Maine, Salem’s Lot tells the story of Ben Mears, an author who returns to his childhood home to write about the nightmares of his youth. He quickly finds, however, that everything is not as it seems— people are going missing, and dark forces stir in the night. Gathering a group of locals who believe his words, Ben Mears sets out to combat this evil in his hometown, or die trying. 

Many things stood out to me in this novel, my favorite being how deep Stephen King delves into the town and even relatively unimportant side characters. By the end, I felt like I could envision this small town and all of its denizens. Additionally, his more classic interpretation of vampires is a breath of fresh air in comparison to the heavily romanticized versions in modern media. They were terrifying and did a great job of making this novel a suspenseful and frightening read.

I have very little criticism of Salem’s Lot besides a word of warning regarding Stephen King’s books in general; he often introduces a confusing number of characters and has no compunctions about killing them off, despite emotional attachment. This can put off some readers, but I can assure you it is well worth it.

I rate this novel an 8.5/10 and as one of my favorite horror books by Stephen King. I would recommend Salem’s Lot to anyone in the building, including staff, as its entertainment value is immutable regardless of age.