[The Shining] Books That Shine: A Chronological Reread of Stephen King

This is the big one.

Without this book, I wouldn’t be a reader and I probably would have stopped writing my own fiction years ago. To understand how important this book is, how utterly brilliant it is, how much you care for the characters in it and how much it physically grips you, you must understand I was not a reader before this book. I was too restless as a child to be a reader. I wanted to be outside with my friends, not sat with my nose in a book. This book changed that, it changed me. That is how good it is, because it makes you care for the people in it, enough that you want to experience that again and you pick up another book and another trying to find that same experience.

The Shining by Stephen King book cover

Jack, Wendy, Danny and Dick are all fantastic characters that could hold a novel each of their own.

Previously, Stephen King had published two novels, Carrie and Salem’s Lot, each one a masterpiece in their own way. Carrie is all about the horror of people’s actions. Salem’s Lot is all about the situation. The Shining is where the depth comes into King’s writing. And yet it achieves something else as well. It does not only make you care but it makes you think. Is the hotel really haunted or is it all in their heads? And that is why it is a masterpiece.

Tier: Books That Shine



Companion Books: Those You Killed by Christopher Babcock 

Both The Shining and Those You Killed feature characters that have hit rock bottom, yet in Christopher Babcock’s debut novel, his protagonist, Elwood Cathis, must claw his way out without the support of his family.  He’s alone, isolated, taking refuge in a lake-side house in a place he’s never been before in a bid to beat the monkey on his back.  His plan is to go cold turkey, his motivation is his daughter and estranged wife. 

Those You Killed by Christopher Badcock book cover

That is until things take a sharp turn into a world of haunting weirdness.  Now there’s a lot more at risk for Elwood than falling off the wagon, like his life.

Jamie Stewart

Jamie Stewart


Jamie Stewart started writing stories at the age of nine inspired by R.L Stein's Goosebumps series and the Resident Evil franchise that he was far too young to play in hindsight. He is the author of I Hear the Clattering of the Keys and Other Fever Dreams, a collection of horror stories, and Mr. Jones, a coming-age-novel.  He is also the co-editor of Welcome to the Funhouse, a horror anthology for Blood Rites Horror.  He has also self-published four horror novelette’s that have all peaked at Number 1 on Amazon's Best Seller's List and have been reviewed by the Night Worms team.  He has published short stories in SPINE magazine as well as had audio versions made for various podcast such as Into the Gloom and Horror Oasis. 

He can be found on Instagram @jamie.stewart.33 where he reviews and promotes books.

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