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Prior to going into my second reading of The Tommyknockers, I wasn t sure that I even wanted to read it Needful Things, Lisey s Story, or The Talisman would have been preferable, as those three novels have been on my mind a lot lately The only reason I decided to go with The Tommyknockers is because it won the SK group read for September, and I d never participated in a group read, and wanted to be a part of it Having said that, I am so glad that I did I finished last night, and what can I say For the most part, I loved every word, although I do think it drags a bit here and there That final scene with Hilly and David served as the icing on the cake for me It s such a tender moment, and very sweet, too Also, a lot of readers don t particularly care for Book II, but it s my personal favorite The town s history is fascinating, and I loved the now let s eavesdrop on our fellow neighbors feel of it, which is very reminiscent of Under the Dome In all earnestness, I don t feel that the middle section is disjointed, clunk, or otherwise disconnected to the rest of the novel On the contrary, every aspect seems to be in direct or indirect relation to everything else Additionally, I love intricate stories with a plethora of characters, and this is no exception especially Ruth McCausland and Hilly Brown They are easily my two favorite characters I really got into young Hilly as an individual, mostly because he and I share some similar attributes And he is HILARIOUS I literally laughed aloud at some of the things he got himself into As King s epic tome comes to a close, there are several scenes that stick out very much, one in which I won t forget any time soon For instance, the Shed People s various inventions, or modifications, if you will Then there s the classic Coke machine and the maniacal smoke detector, soaring through the woods like something out of Star Wars Finally, there s Gard s ascension, and most importantly, the dire circumstances behind it I LOVE how it s fueled by virtually everything and everyone around him It s a very powerful scene, IMO There are so many other aspects of the novel that I could go on and on about, but I won t, for fear of spoiling the story to those that haven t read it yet. 2018 update I am bumping my rating up to five stars because well, this book is simply one of King s best.The Tommyknockers is about Pandora s box, and what happens once it s open and it s also about failed missed unrequited love Our two main characters are Bobbi Anderson, a moderately successful writer of western novels, and Jim Gardener, a published poet and struggling alcoholic The two are friends, and in the past have been lovers, enemiesand everything in between Their relationship is endlessly intriguing, and it s what makes this flawed novel work for me While walking in the woods behind her home, Bobbi literally stumbles over what turns out to be part of an alien spaceship that has been buried for millennia, and is immediately intrigued Her dig begins, and soon Jim comes to her after sensing something is wrong with her wrong with her situation, and perhaps the town of Haven, Maine in general The story expands out from there This is very much a big King novel It feels big The focus is only on Bobbi and Gardener for the first two hundred pages or so the perspective is then expanded to include the goings on of the townsfolk in part two, Tales of Haven It is this section most readers have problems with, I have noticed and I can t disagree While a few of the chapters specifically the ones that focus on Becka Paulson, Hilly Brown, and Ruth McCausland do a good job of painting a searing picture of foreboding, others such as the pages long chapter about the history of the town s name that has almost nothing to do with the story act as speed bumps, and that s unfortunate King is at his most inventive here, but he often gets in his own way I certainly held this novel in higher esteem before this reread While some aspects of the story Jim and Bobbi s relationship and the many guises it takes, Ev Hillman s character, the ending actually improved for me, large chunks of the prose were slogs to get through I don t usually accuse King of overwriting, but overwrite he did here Maybe I am only realizing it now because I ve been rereading his works in order After taut, entrancing stories like Misery and Cujo, The Tommyknockers just feels bloated It s like comparing 1968 and 1977 Elvis the talent and goods are still there, but boy a little weight could stand to be lost.At its core, this is a white hot story written by a man who seems very, very tired It s well documented that SK was at the height of his drug addiction during the writing of this novel, and it certainly shows He was a gargantuan success by then, though, and I guess no editor could stand up to the King He would come back a couple of years later with The Dark Half, a novel that lacks the fat of this oneas well as the inventive spark This one is a hot mess, but it s a whole lotta fun and pretty creepy, too 3.5 stars rounded up King connections buckle in for a long ride Bobbi Anderson lived in Cleaves Mills a town that has popped up in several Stephen King novels, most noticeably The Dead Zone before moving to Haven P 92 Derry is mentioned In fact, Derry pops up a lot in this one.P 97 Jim Gardener, when doing a poetry reading, is facing stage fright and fears the audience sucking out his soul, his ka.Pg 144 Jim uses the phrase lighting out for the territories, a throwback to The Talisman.Pg 150 Jim wakes up on a beach after a jag, only to run into a teenage boy He has a conversation with the kid, and is it turns out it s Jack Sawyer, of The Talisman Pg 159 Jim hitches a ride in a van with a few druggie teens One of said teens is named Beaver Could it be the Beaver who appears in 2001 s Dreamcatcher I d say it s likely Like that novel, a good chunk of this one is set in Derry And the timeline seems right As well, it s not like the name or nickname, rather Beaver is very common Pg 265 The Shop gets a mention, and will become important near the novel s end Charlie McGee from Firestarter is referenced in connection to The Shop Pg 476 David Bright from the Dead Zone and several short stories enters the scene.Pg 479 Ev Hillman, Hilly s grandfather, hears chuckles in the drains of his hotel room in Derry Pg 479 While in Derry, Ev goes to a local bar and hears the story of The Dead Zone s Johnny Smith Pg 492 Starting here, some history of the woods surrounding Bobbi Anderson s home is given It is confirmed that the area once called Big Injun Woods was populated by the Micmacs, giving this book a firm connection to Pet Sematary Pg 498 King breaks the fourth wall and has a character hold this opinion Bobbi Anderson wrote good old western stories you could really sink your teeth into, not all full of make believe monsters and a bunch of dirty words, like that fellow who lived up in Bangor wrote Pg 735 When contemplating how to break into Bobbi s shed, he makes a mental reference to Jack Nicholson s performance in The Shining particularly, the infamous Here s Johnny scene OkayLet s talk about something, shall we Let s discuss what universe this novel takes place in, because I m very sure on a different level of the Tower than most of King s other stories In the Tommyknockers universe, King is an established author, and characters make references to him and, by association, Peter Straub At one point, Bobbi asks Jim if he s ever read Straub s 1983 novel Floating Dragon Therefore, it would do to assume that The Talisman, the novel co written by King and Straub, also exists in this world But Jim runs into Jack Sawyer, the main character from The Talisman, on a beach They even converse Very similarly to Father Callahan s entry into the Dark Tower series despite existing as a book character in that very same world, it looks like Jack and Stephen King and Peter Straub, I d assume exists both as a fictional and real character Trippy, huh It doesn t stop there There are references to Derry and Pennywise the Clown all over the place, and any King reader knows how intertwined IT is in the Dark Tower series Is it safe to say The Tommyknockers is, therefore, Dark Tower related Not just in a tangential way, either I d say yes, though King has never said so And what about The Dead Zone That novel is referenced herethan any other Bobbi once lived in Cleaves Mill David Bright, a reporter from that story, shows up here in a pretty significant way If one will recall, in a climatic scene in that earlier book a character makes a reference to Brian DePalma s film Carrie This is just like that movie Carrie she says, thus, King is breaking the fourth wall and firmly establishing that work of fiction outside the realm of the rest of his storiesThe Tommyknockers does the same thing A character actually makes a reference to King as a living being and a writer, and Jim thinks about Stanley Kubrick s cinematic adaptation of The Shining But that s pretty messy, isn t it Especially when one considers the fact that The Dead Zone is a Castle Rock story, thus making references made in and to that novel inherently contradictory Same here in fact, the references King makes in The Tommyknockers are contradictory in and of themselves, and often work against each other Is it on purpose Was he just throwing out random Easter eggs to please the crowd and inflate himself Maybe it s a little of both I don t know, nor do I pretend to And I m sure there are many, many references in this one that I missed, for I took only the briefest of notes Alright, now to pull myself out of the rabbit hole and finish this thing .Favorite quote The trouble with living alone, she had discovered and the reason why most people she knew didn t like to be alone even for a little while was that the longer you lived alone, the louder the voices on the right side of your brain got Up next It s The Dark Half.ugh. Happy Reading Mel Late last night and the night before, tommyknockers tommyknockers knocking at your doorI can make a couple of guesses to explain why this book only has a rating of 3.46, which it doesn t deserve I thought it was great Interesting and very different to Kings usual books That being said, all the elements of a King book are here, great characters, unusual story and great dialogue.I ve read a few reviews saying that the ending is rubbish I don t agree with this and there are definitely worse King endings out there cough Under the dome cough cough.It is a bit long in the tooth but I don t think that can be helped It does suffer a bit in the middle whilst King builds the blocks for latter stages in the book, so I can see people switching off, but I didn t think it was that bad.Above all, this is a King fanboy book, the references to his other works if you ve read a lot of King make this book worth reading.Another solid story from the King of Kings Please allow me to preface this review I love to read I ve been escaping by burying my nose in books for as long as I can remember and this particular book has taken me back to where it all began Reading this book again after nearly 28 years has vividly reminded me of those early days when a 600 page book was such a huge part of my life, and the newest Stephen King hardcover was the BEST Christmas present ever I say all of this to make clear that I m probably unable to separate my sentimental attachment to this book from the critical aspects of reviewing it, and since I found myself equally enad this time around, it gets all five stars from me As a kid and a teenager, I devoured King s entire library in the 80s early 90s, a true Constant Reader during that time Though I eventually branched out to other authors and genres, for me Stephen King and those magnificent books will always hold a special place in this reader s heart Enough gushing Let s talk Tommyknockers First, I must respectfully disagree with others who feel that this is King s attempt at sci fi This, to me, is pure horror suspense I understand the comparison, what with that gigantic, most likely from outer space thing buried in the earth but to me that s where the similarity ends I would argue that this story is muchabout the slow build up of suspense The at first curious, then frightening, then horrifying things that are happening around town and how they re all related to that buried thing The way that people in town are suddenly feeling a littleconnected with one another, undergoing bizarre changes, coming up with brilliant and terrifying new technology It s all about the Becoming And it s super creepy I was unaware until recently that this book had gotten such widely varying reviews and that so many people were disappointed by it That really surprised me because every time I picked it up I ended up completely absorbed Granted, the writing in Tommyknockers is much edgier and less polished than I remember his later works being, which could have turned some readers off Personally, I found it bracing downright comical at times And then there s Jim Gardener A.K.A Gard He s absolutely my favorite character in this book from his first page, which brings me to what I ve said before but bears repeating what King does best is his characters Throughout this book we see Gard at his best, worst and everything in between He s at times deplorable, at times exceedingly passionate, snide, funny, melancholy, and at all times indisputably genuine It s easy to underestimate him but I knew what was in store for him and it was not an easy path I don t want to spoil anything so I ll just leave this here as warning for the TommyknockersYou got no fear of the underdogThat s why you will not survive Spoon The UnderdogThanks to my friends in the Eclectic Club for another super fun group read 2.5Let me tell you a story Jason, Dustin you guys have probably heard me tell this enough times you re sick of it so you guys can skip ahead Many years ago I first read the Tommyknockers It was a huge brick of a book a hardcover version no less I was fascinated with it I was a new Stephen King fan and after picking up the first book of his I ever read, I had to grab another and another and another The Tommyknockers had this great build up, it was intense, there was so much going on There was an entire town communicating telepathically There were aliens, disappearing children, a spaceship buried in the ground and lots and lots of menstruation What s not to love Well, I ll tell you The ending I had never in my life felt so ripped off about an ending in a book So, I did what any pissed off teenager would do I chucked my hard cover book across the room It hit the wall at high speeds and left a softball sized hole in the wall in my bedroom I can tell you one thing Mom and Dad were not impressed.I decided to do a re read this year on audio in hopes of letting go of some of that anger It was a fail of epic proportions I ended up disliking this bookthis time around than I did the first time I think, now that I am older, I amaware of hidden messages in books I hate that I felt like Gard s obsession with nuclear power plants and the endless drunken rants was King s way of expressing his own views Now, I don t know that for a fact, but I don t care It was annoying and was so prevalent that I kept waiting for the nuke to occur Another thing that annoyed me useless shit This book contained so much useless filler that I found myself trying to keep track of everything only to find that none of it fucking mattered There are FEW books under five written by Stephen King that leave me with this awful taste in my mouth, but when they do it s just unbearable I feel that way about this one and if you could see the look of disgust on my face while even writing this review, you would know the truth of what I say So why 2.5 stars and not 1 Well, let s face it it s King And as any King fan will tell you even a bad Stephen King book is better than most others Also there were still some aspects that I loved The disappearing act at the magic show remains to be one of my favorite King moments I also greatly enjoy the doll scene There were moments of greatness hidden in this tome It is evident that King was lacking direction in this one though and was in severe need of a strict editor Not one of his best, by any means but an ok book. Well, that was unexpected.First time I read this, I loved the first two thirds of the book and loathed the last third This time, it was the exact opposite I enjoyed the introductions to Bobbi and Gard all right, I guess, but the middle was boring I almost gave up In fact, I switched to the audio book so that I could play Minecraft while listening to it Then, an odd thing happened I became involved again This was after the vagina tentacles I started catching reference after reference, and the book became a kind of treasure hunt Fucking awesome, dude But here s where it gets really weird All the cool references at the tail end of the book are for books King hadn t yet written Specifically, Under the Dome Usually, I tell people to read King s books in order, but if you plan on reading Under the Dome, you might want to leave The Tommyknockers for after you finish it There are at least two huge spoilers for Under the Dome in this novel There are two , but they are well hidden gems I also find it terribly rad that King first mentions Haven way back inSalem s Lot, yet it would bethan a decade before he actually wrote about the town.Time for the bad news This book is one of those King novels that feels bloated There s so much unneeded information in here that I would suspect as much as two hundred pages could have been left on the cutting room floor and no one would have noticed King doesn t even like this book He stated as much in a recent interview that and Dreamcatcher are his least favorite novels because they were both written during periods of recovery one before and after drug rehab, and the other while recovering from being ran over by a van To quote King exactlyThe Tommyknockers is a mess, man So s Dreamcatcher References to other books Gard mentions Ka while in deep thought.Gard meets a young boy named Jack outside of the Alhambra H Huge reference to The Talisman here Clown holding balloons is seen in a storm drain.All this further cements my claims that all of King s novels tie in to the Dark Tower in some way Even books like Firestarter and Misery, as well as other books that King has not verified as tie ins.Notable name Big Injun Woods Pet Sematary Derry It, Insomnia Johnny Smith The Dead Zone There are farconnections to other books in the King verse but some of them are spoilers and or I m saving them for my next Decade with King post In summation The Tommyknockers is a big book It feels like a big book His novel It doesn t feel half as long as this book, and it s over 400 pages longer A lot of ideas are rehashed this time around, too, and reading King s library in chronological order makes all these reused concepts stand out like a sore thumb covered in neon pink spray paint and glitter I wouldn t tell anyone to skip The Tommyknockers, but you can leave it for last Recommended for King completionists. Bobbie Anderson finds an object buried in the woods that happens to be the tip of an alien craft After she tampers with it sufficiently, the whole town gradually begins changing into aliens.A guy I used to work with kept urging me to read this one He read half of it during a week long stint in the brig while in the navy, then rescued the book from destruction while he was throwing the ship s trash in the ocean a week later Was it worth it Hell yes King novels don t usually affect me but I dreamed about this one twice while I was reading it There s an underlying creepiness to this book, similar to Invasion of the Body Snatchers.It s also my second favorite book with the word knockers in the title I mean, The Tommyknockers is an awful book That was the last one I wrote before I cleaned up my act And I ve thought about it a lot lately and said to myself, There s really a good book in here, underneath all the sort of spurious energy that cocaine provides, and I ought to go back The book is about 700 pages long, and I m thinking, There s probably a good 350 page novel in thereStephen King in a Rolling Stone interview.You got that right, Uncle Stevie.Bobbi Anderson is a writer living outside a small Maine town who trips over a hunk of metal sticking out of the ground while walking in the woods with her dog She finds herself strangely compelled to dig it up, and she soon realizes that she s stumbled across a flying saucer that has been buried for thousands of years Bobbi s friend Jim Gardner is a poet with a love of booze and a deep hatred of nuclear power After going on an epic bender Gardner visits Bobbi and finds that she has worked herself ragged and lost several teeth while digging up the ship She s also started making all sorts of home improvements like fixing her aging water heater up with what appears to be a fusion reactor Bobbi convinces Gardner that they need to excavate the ship themselves, and he agrees to help But the ship s influence grows as it is unearthed to the point where the nearby townsfolk also start spitting teeth and coming up with clever ideas of their own The King quote I led with really sums up this book There s an intriguing idea at the heart of it and some nice character stuff particularly when it comes to Gardner However, its coke fueled writing is so evident that you expect to see leftover powder and dried blood spots from King s nose on every page There s just too many tangents that go in useless directions, and it really gets out of control when he starts telling all the stories happening in the nearby town of Haven.Detailing the takeover of the population of a small town via snapshots of the locals is something King does well in other books like Salem s Lot, but he could never draw the line here between relevant character details and useless information In fact, it almost seems at times like he was starting different novels One has a beloved civic leader coming to suspect that there is something very wrong happening and doing her best to hold out from it Another has a reporter starting to unravel the mystery of what happens in Haven, but since all he is doing is uncovering what we already know his whole thread is pretty much useless anyhow so learning all about his relationship with his passive aggressive mother is especially pointless.King also has problems in dealing with things logically from a plot standpoint He prefers vague supernatural threats that he can routinely increase or reduce the powers of as needed, but when he has to put physical rules to them things fly apart Here he can t even nail down exactly how the Tommyknockers are transforming the people It s definitely a gas that seems to come off the skin of the ship as it s exposed That s a good concept Although why aliens would coat the outside of their ship with something that would spread on contact with Earth air is a valid question but the ship also exudes something akin to electromagnetism that effects electronics and radio waves You could make the argument that there s no reason it can t be pumping out both gas and some weird alien radiation Which is true, but it gets messy when it comes exactly which thing is doing what, and King practically broke his back trying to draw parallels to the TK ship and nuclear reactors so that theme is clear However, Gardner is immune to the Tommyknocker transformation because he has a metal plate in his head so that seems to indicate that it isn t caused by the gas, but it is repeatedly shown that others can avoid its effects by not breathing the air It just isn t consistent at all There is also a whopper of a continuity error right at the heart of this that shows that King wasn t thinking through the details view spoiler A huge deal is made out of how the sling that lowers Gardner and Bobbi into the excavation pit requires one person to be up top to operate it, and that element plays a pivotal part in the climax Yet at the moment when they reach the hatch both of them are down in the hole at the same time with no one else around Oops hide spoiler `Pdf ☙ The Tommyknockers ☔ Librarian S Note This Is Alternate Cover Edition ISBNISBNSee Original Record HereLate Last Night And The Night BeforeTommyknockers, Tommyknockers, Knocking At The DoorSomething Was Happening In Bobbi Anderson S Idyllic Small Town Of Haven, Maine Something That Gave Every Man, Woman, And Child In Town Powers Far Beyond Ordinary Mortals Something That Turned The Town Into A Death Trap For All Outsiders Something That Came From A Metal Object, Buried For Millennia, That Bobbi Accidentally Stumbled Across It Wasn T That Bobbi And The Other Good Folks Of Haven Had Sold Their Souls To Reap The Rewards Of The Most Deadly Evil This Side Of Hell It Was Like A Diabolical Takeoveran Invasion Of Body And Soul And Mind Note All Information Herein, Such As Number Of Pages, Publisher, Etc Refer To This Alternate Cover Edition And May Or May Not Coincide With The Main Entry For This ISBN Or Any Other Alternate Covers