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4.3 out of 5 stars225
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 28 April 2013
This was Stephen King's first novel and although it didn't quite flow as easily as some of his later work it is still an excellent read that I found hard to put down, as all his books. I am gradually working my way through his books but had to get Carrie in before the upcoming updated film comes out. As ever it is a cracking read.
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on 30 November 2015
I've been meaning to read this book for ages, and I'm so glad that I got round to it. Stephen King truly is the master of horror, and this first novel is absolutely brilliant. I couldn't put it down; the way in which it's written is so creative, and the unique characters and plot line kept me hooked. Definitely a must-read!
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on 28 June 2013
It was like love at first sight when I first picked up this novel at the age of thirteen, loving the front cover of a girl with blood dripping down her face. I was attracted to it immediately and it would be a love affair that has lasted fifteen years.

I had just lost my dad and was completely depressed. Within the first few lines of this debut novel by my all-time favourite write Stephen King, I immediately forgot all my troubles and concerns and was engrossed within the story of the "ugly duckling girl" that was tormented by her peers, tortured emotionally and physically by her religiously demented mother and had a rare gift - the gift of telekinesis - that allowed her to move objects with her mind. I felt sorry for Carrie and suddenly started wishing that I had a gift like this, but the genius of King is the way he is able to twist this wonderful rare talent into the ultimate nightmare.

Carrie is a simple story of how a girl who has no friends, suddenly discovers the idea of women growing up and discovering her first period, a trauma for her brought on by the fact that she believes she is dying, as well as the fact that her peers believe this is just a funny joke that they can use to abuse Carrie with. This is the catalyst that starts the whole horror of what the novel Carrie really is. Through the use of false interviews and made-up articles written by King himself, the reader learns the true horror of what this girl possesses and what she has to go through to get to the point of prom night where she will use her power to enact vengeance on those that have tortured her.

The real horror is more so for the reader who is drawn into the entire drama, waiting to see what happens, wondering just where the horror will end - the way in which Carrie is treated both by her peers and her mother, and what she is forced to endure is probably more horrific than the way in which she enforces her power on the towns-people.

Carrie, the book, has often been criticised by a lot of readers as being very raw and only showing the tip of the ice berg towards King's talent. Yes, this is a debut novel and King is still finding his way through his talent, but the rawness and naivetés is what makes this one of King's most popular and enduring novels that bounds the reader under some sort of spell in which they cannot put the book down. I have read this numerous times and I never get tired of it. It shows King as a great story teller who really knows how to engage his audience and make them want to come back for more.

I first read Carrie fifteen years ago and I have never looked back since. Over the years I've discovered new books by King and discovered his talent doesn't dim but grows and he is one of those rare writers where if you were to read the same book again, it will become better for you rather than tedious. I do not consider Carrie to be the best of his novels - how could it be with all those other works of genius he has written, but it is one of my favourite and most treasured as it was the first of his novels that I read; I read it when I was going through the worst period of my life and it got me through some really bad times. It is a fantastic story with a great heart, a well written tale of sweet revenge and consequence. It is one of those books that a lot of people can identify with as it gives a clear understanding of what school is really like, both for the victim and the bully. I cannot rave about this novel enough. It is a truly wonderful book and if you haven't read Stephen King before, this is a good place to start. If you have read him before, you are in for a treat and will not be disappointed - if you have read this novel before, read it again. It's just as good, if not better, the second time. It's the debut of one of the most talented writers who has ever put pen to paper. It made me become a fan!
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on 29 May 2012
Everyone over the age of sixteen knows the basic plot behind "Carrie", whether they have seen the film/read the book or not. Most of the people that I have told that I had finished this book remarked "Doesn't she move things with her mind and kill lots of people?" Which is, in essence, correct but there is so much more to the story of Carietta White.

This was, famously, King's first published novel yet I didn't feel aware of this fact when reading. The switching of narrative, the interspersed Committee interviews and police reports and the codified thoughts of characters would suggest an experienced author.

The tragedy that lies behind Carrie (her abusive, fanatical mother; constant bullying and humiliation from her peers; her restricted adolescent life that would inevitably evolve into a stifling, repressed existence at the hands of her mother) is far more expressed in the novel as opposed to the film. As a reader, I knew what was to come and the devastation that Carrie would wreak, yet one can't help but feel sympathy for this fragile, abused and ritually humiliated girl. Additionally, King manages to convey the effects of Prom Night and the town's collapse - reading the novel with the peppering of police reports and government investgiations brings reality to what could be absurd and you are forced to imagine the horror of that night.

It is a short novel which I zipped through - the prose flows so easily that you find yourself desperate to read more, to know more about this destruction that "the White girl" creates.

I'm not usually a fan of supernatural novels however due to the film, I felt this was a must-read. And I was certainly right - an amazing novel that I thoroughly enjoyed.
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on 8 November 2012
Classic Stephen King, shorter than his later books but none the worse for it. I had seen the film but the book conjured up new images as I read it and the introduction by the author gives some background inspiration which makes for a deeper insight into his mind (for a writer, that always helps!). Glad I never attended any American High Schools...! Gripping read.
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on 30 July 2013
This book is a classic and always will be. I highly recommend it to anyone who loves suspenseful horror fiction as this book is certainly suitable for you; it's one of my favourite King novels so far.

The only reason I'm not giving it five stars is because I personally felt it lacked some emotional depth and therefore didn't engage me fully, but that's not partially expected from this genre.
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on 24 July 2001
When I first read Carrie, I was blown away by the storyline and the style of writing, but the important thing was that we felt sympathy towards the protagonist,Carrie, so we weren't sure weather to condemn her actions at the end or root for her.
This is strange because King recently admitted that he never liked her, and felt that she was asking for the abuse she got. He based Carrie White on two people that he taught in his high school.
When I recently re-read the novel, it does not hit the same impact that it originally did and one factor constantly annoyed me: why did Chris go so far to humiliate her? Did she have a psycological problem or something.
But that was just an excuse for the action, so I'll let it go. If you want a good introduction to the Master of Terror, than you can't go wrong.
By the way, after you read this, compare it to the Brian De Palma/Sissy Spacek film and draw your conclusions on how faithfully it was adapted. The notorious ''shock-ending'' is not in the book.
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on 15 October 2013
As with all Steven kings book this one does to let you down. As I was reading it was easy to understand how events happened with an element of being ale to compare with real life and then wondering if it could really happen. Not as gruesome as some of the books I have read and not to over the top in the fantasy side of things. A very nice easy read that keeps you turning the pages.
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on 19 March 2000
This was the first SK book I ever read. I spent months listening to everyone raving about the movie. I was too young to go see it and there were no videos in those olden days of 20 something years ago. I decided that I would settle for the book and boy am I glad I did. I read it on holiday, in a lonely country cottage in the Highlands of Scotland - best place in the world to read HORROR. This made me fall in love with SK. It was the most incredible experience ever, as far as books go. It left such an impression on me that I kept thinking about the characters years later, hell I even called my daughter Carrie! If you are wondering which SK book to read and want real excitement and thrills, then you won't go far wrong with this masterpiece. It is horror at it's very best. If it is your first SK book it certainly won't be your last.
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on 16 February 2014
First time I have ever read the book, although have seen the film many times.
Reading parts of the book I didn't want to put it down, but then other parts were not as good that is why I have given the star rating I have.
I would advise anyone to read it who has never read Stephen King before as an introduction to his books.
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