IT by Stephen King


It by Stephen King

Published: 1986



It by Stephen King is a horror novel, but it is also a story about friendship and courage.  One summer in 1957, seven kids come together and do an amazing thing.  They kill a monster.  Over 25 years later, they have to do it again.

It starts with “stuttering” Bill Denbrough making a paper sailboat out of sheet of newspaper for his younger brother, George.  Bill is sick, so George takes it out it in the rain by himself, and it sails down the street toward a storm drain.  Something reaches out of that drain, and tears off George’s arm.  He dies.

The following summer Bill becomes part of the “Losers Club”, made up of Ben Hanscomb who is constantly bullied because of his weight, Eddie Kaspbrak who has very bad asthma (according to his mother), Richie Tozier aka “trashmouth”, Stan Uris, their only Jewish member, Beverly Marsh, a tomboy with a very abusive father, and Mike Hanlon, the black contingent of the group.  Yes, each one is bullied/abused (all by the sadistic Henry Bowers and his buddies), but each also has another issue that they are hiding.  They have all had a vision of the evil that is lurking in Derry.  It has looked different to each, but it is the same evil.  Together they kill it.  Then they make a promise to one another that if it ever comes back, so will they.

27 years later, after children again start disappearing, Mike Hanlon starts calling his old friends.  Not all of them will heed the call.  They’ve forgotten most of what happened that year.  Mike reminds them.  What was straight-forward in childhood, is harder when you become adults.  Belief is something that returns slowly, if at all.  Belief is what they’ll need to kill It.  This time, not everyone survives.

This is a book about the magic of childhood, about the friendships created, the laughter, the tears, the memories. And it is a book about re-uniting with your childhood friends. And it is a book about terrors that you expect to stay in childhood….until they come back.

I still enjoy reading this one.   I enjoy it because of the characters, the interactions between them, their love for each other.  I actually love King’s shape-shifting clown, Pennywise, and the fact that “IT”  could be whatever it needed to be for each person.  I didn’t particularly like the last image that they fought, but…it’s Stephen King and he can do what he wants.  Who am I to question?


Favorite Quotes from IT:

“We lie best when we lie to ourselves.”

“We all float down here!”

“He thrusts his fists against the posts and still insists he sees the ghosts.”


Re-Read: 2015


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