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55 Reviews
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars King and his cars
I am a huge Stephen King fan. I own and have read most of his books, and yet for some reason I bought this and it simply sat on the shelf for about 2 months before I thought about reading it. I think I felt a little let down by Mr King's most recent efforts... Dreamcatcher just didn't work for me. So when I finally did pick it up and start reading my first feeling was one...
Published on 6 Nov 2003 by Amazon Customer

versus
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not quite the King in action......
I love Stephen King's writing - I think he has a style and a class all of his own. I buy everything he writes because I have never been disappointed by anything he has written and I know that I am not buying something that will take me weeks to trawl through. Buick was not disappointing - just flat and a little below what King's fan's are entitled to expect from him...
Published on 4 Jan 2004 by F M Kay


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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bucket of bolts, 13 Sep 2002
By 
Juhani Sierla (Helsinki, Finland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Hardcover)
A Buick look-a-like is abandoned in a service station and is towed to Pennsylvania State Police garage (or shed). Every now and then temperature inside garage drops and then there is lightning and something more or less living comes from the trunk. Some people disappear. A dog dies.
Stephen King's text is usually enjoyable to read and it is this time too. Problem is that the story is rather boring. Not much happens here. I have had more exciting adventures with my '88 Escort than these Pennsylvania troopers have in this book with alien Buick.
I liked Everything's Eventual but didn't enjoy Dreamcatcher very much. Somehow I feel that SK has lost some of his touch. Maybe he has written everything he was meant to write. I hope not but his latest novels just don't impress me as much as his earlier ones did. If you are a SK fan you will certainly read this but if you are thinking of starting to read SK`s books try his earlier books from late 1970s and early 1980s.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good novel, 12 Dec 2003
By 
Eric (El Sobrante, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Paperback)
Well this is the first time I have been on amazon.co.uk, I am a American and I always use amazon.com. Anyway, this book is rather good, I am not going to lie there, but it would be been better if this was a short story, Mr. King spends a lot of time dragging on and on about the history of the car, now dont get me wrong I love history and he knows how to write, but I just wish that he could explain more about the mysterious world inside the car, but he does not, so this kind of drew me off from the story.
The book is a rather good one, but it would of been better if this was a short story instead of a novel, good though.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars another disappointment, 10 Nov 2002
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Hardcover)
Just like Dreamcatcher, for the first 100 pages you're hooked and hopeful that Mr King is back on top form. And then you keep going - and nothing much happens.
It's basically a good idea for a short story, padded way beyond its natural length.
A real shame.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars For the non-King reader, 13 April 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Hardcover)
This is the second book of Kings I have ever read. The first having been the Shining. I'd looked at it on the shelf a couple of times in the shops with a mild curiosity, something about the title didn't seem right. This was just before christmas.
As it happened, i found this in my stocking christmas day. I didn't start reading it straight away, but once I did i couldn't put it down. The title is just the start of things not seeming right, the further you get into this novel the questions you ask and the less you ever think they will answer.
Killing the cat with curiosity and then showing the links that led it that way pretty much sum this up. It is refletive of life, told by a writer who is capable of creating more than one engaging voice. I think I can safely say now that I will be looking for a few more King titles to put on my shelf.
So if you haven't read King, never been sure of all that horror, give this a try. Not scary, but expertly crafted to make you think while you enjoy
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars From the bottom of the barrel, 24 May 2012
By 
Philtrum (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Hardcover)
The first King book I read was Pet Sematary, in the early 80s. I was hooked and quickly read all he had written to that point. Then, as each new book was released, I devoured it.

But, slowly, the enjoyment seemed to wane. The Tommyknockers was poor. The Dark Half was a chore to get through, and I gave up on King.

I later realised that this drop in form coincided with his love affair with the bottle.

A couple of years ago I read Duma Key, and thought it was great, bar the last 50 pages. I've read all he's written since then and have enjoyed each book. Under The Dome was great (bar the last 50 pages). 22.11.63 was tremendous (not without some faults though).

I saw this book on my shelf and thought I'd give it a go. Mistake. Should have read some of the Amazon reviews and picked another one from his back catalogue.

This would have made a neat short story/novella. Stretched out to 300+ pages it's just way, way too boring.

The sections where something actually happens could easily be compressed into 20 pages. The rest is just padding.

It's clear, on reflection, that King was too interested in filling the pages with information he'd gleaned from spending time with real cops. It's just not that interesting.

Other reviewers praise his characterisation but they can't have been reading the same book. At the end, how much do you really know about the main characters? What drives them? We learn nothing, really. Some oft repeated platitudes about the duties of being policemen, perhaps. Nothing more.

If you're new to King (can anyone now be new to King?) then start elsewhere (It or The Stand would be my advice). If you know King but haven't read this one, then you're missing nothing.

Sad but true.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally a book that scared me...., 29 Aug 2003
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Paperback)
I have to confess that even if I've read all King's books only one had given me the creeps so far and that was Salem's Lot.
I was quite surprised when I found out that this book scared me, that is the only reason I gave it five stars.
The story is a classic from King with the typical "both world" object and the events that happens around it.
If you have not read any book from King I reccomend this book, if you have read all book from King you have already bought it.
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3.0 out of 5 stars average - a good read but nothing great, 25 Nov 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Hardcover)
there is an overwhelming feeling that this novel is going to tie in with the now seemingly endless dark tower series, the buick seems remeniscent of the cars driven by the long men in Hearts in Atlantis and the events around the buick and alien births it has all feel very 'world moved on'.
on that score this proves interesting but at the same time it is annoying. it is all a little nothing. when you want terror you get blandness, when you want character you get Kings obsession with dialect and pronounciation.
all told this is OK, it passes time on a train or a plane which unfortunatley is what King has become. so saying it is worlds better then the diabolical Black House - which was yet another dark tower tie in. i would expect in the next dark tower novel referances will be made to events in this book though so saying i have been waiting for years for him to explain the referances he made in Insomnia to the dark tower. it all feels like he is loosing control of his ideas - and i really hope i am wrong about that
buy it - but in paper back
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes the horror of the unknown is that it stays unknown, 29 July 2004
By 
Lawrance M. Bernabo (The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
Just because there is a car, or at least something that looks like a car, on the cover and in the story Stephen King tells in his latest novel, "From a Buick 8," is no reason to think this is "Christine" revisited. This is not a novel about a possessed car and half the fun is trying to speculate along with the book's characters as to what exactly is that thing in Shed B. The strongest similarity between the two novels is actually the switch from first person to third person narrative, although this new novel does that with much more frequency that the other work, which was divided like Gaul into three parts. King has announced he is in the final stages of cleaning out his literary cupboard and it is fairly clear that the blaze of glory he intends to go out on and write "fini" to his career is going to be the three volumes ending his epic of Roland of Gilead and the Dark Tower. So I did not start reading "From a Buick 8" expecting something on a par with "The Stand" and "It." I was hoping for something more akin to "The Dead Zone," and that is closer to the mark in terms of where this novel stands in the King oeuvre.
The idea that the greatest horror of all is the unknown is not exactly a new one and King has explored it before, albeit to lesser degrees than he does in this novel. The Pennsylvania Troopers of Troop D are telling high school senior Ned Wilcox the story of the mysterious Buick in Shed B. Ned's father was a trooper who was killed by a drunk driver and the boy has been hanging around the Troop, learning dispatch codes and such, in an obvious effort to connect with his dead father. As the Troopers take turns telling the story they kept warning young Ned that there is not going to be a punch line; as much as the boy wants answers, they just are not going to be forthcoming, get used to it, kid. Even as the story sticks to this line through the final downward path of the novel you find yourself wondering how far will King go. Will he actually come clean and resolve the mystery he has been developing, will he stick to his guns and show that sometimes there are no answers to the big questions, or will he find a middle ground that provides some inadequate explanation that preserves the uncertainty that is the story's compelling hook? Usually my disappointment in a Stephen King novel comes when the ending does not live up to the set up, and while it might simply be a case of lowered expectations this time around, I think he does manage to have his cake and eat it too at the end of this one. The ending is satisfying, even if it is not as memorable as what he has provided on occasion.
I heard tell that as he was recovering from his own close encounter of the worst kind with a motor vehicle King was tooling around Western Pennsylvania in the company of State Troopers. The geographical setting of the novel does not seem distinct from King's beloved Maine, but he does seem to capture the authenticity of police work for State Troopers (who are not exactly high up on the list of law enforcement types who are the subject of fictional narratives). You get the feeling that most of the stories that make their way into "From a Buick 8" were told to King while he was in the company of those real Troopers, and the Author's note in the back of the book confirms as much. This speaks to what has always been the backbone of King's work, which is not so much his ability to come up with nightmares a plenty, but rather how he could consistently convince us that his horror stories and tales of terror are taking place in the real world in which we live. Laurell K. Hamilton has come up with some horrific conclusions for several of her Anita Blake novels, but her alternative reality would never be confused with the real world. King simply tapped into our cultural consciousness and served as our conduit to what was out there on the other side. "From a Buick 8" is simply the latest reminder of that particular truth.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars gets you thinking, 15 Jun 2011
By 
Richard Byers - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Paperback)
i think to enjoy this book you have to have an active imagination, the book works on the fear of the unkown, and it does this well. As with other king books its not what you see that scares you, its what you dont and your what imagination makes up.

overall i think this book is a great read, a would interest those with an eye for parallel universes and perhaps takes a nod at the dark tower series and the film mist
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars For All the Explaining, Much is Unexplained, 5 Jun 2011
By 
John M. Ford "johnDC" (near DC, MD USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: From a Buick 8 (Paperback)
The "Buick 8" is a car kept in storage shed B behind the headquarters of Pennsylvania State Police Troop D headquarters. For all this neat-seeming classification, little is known about this vehicle. It was abandoned by an odd, nameless stranger. It occasionally gives off strange lights and noises. And if you damage it--with some difficulty--it seems able to fix itself. Troop D keeps it secret. And occasionally faces the consequences of its presence.

Stephen King weaves three stories around this car. The first is its history, related in hushed tones by members of Troop D and their close associates. They tell of the tragedies, disappearances, and strange events they have witnessed. And speculate without confidence about what they mean.

The second story is of a son learning about his father by talking with his father's friends. Ned Wilcox's father Curtis was a member of Troop D. He was killed by a drunk driver in one of those senseless events that seem so common in life, but so hard to understand. As Ned first visits, then joins Troop D, he learns who his father was. And develops his own version of his father's obsession with the Buick 8. The third thread is in the background. It unfolds the relationships between the members of Troop D, their loyalty to each other and their acceptance of things they cannot change and only partially understand.

This is a good book, subdued and with few action sequences amid all the reminiscing. It has some connections to Kings larger body of fiction, but not so many that readers unfamiliar with the Tower and its implications are at a loss. It is a thoughtful read.
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From a Buick 8
From a Buick 8 by Stephen King (Paperback - 13 Oct 2011)
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