Stephen King's 10 Best Novels
This list is ranked as my estimation of King's best, in order:
#1. The Stand
#2. The Shining
#3. Pet Sematary
#4. The Dead Zone
#6. Dolores Claiborne
#7. The Green Mile
#9. 'Salem's Lot
I do believe King's best writing was from the mid-to-late-1970s. This includes Pet Sematary, which was written circa 1978 but not published until early 1980s
9 Classic Instances of Animal Snuff for Kids [plus one from Boone Spaulding]
from Inventory: 16 Films Featuring Manic Pixie Dream Girls, 10 Great Songs Nearly Ruined By Saxophone, and 100 More Obsessively Specific Pop-culture Lists by The Onion's A.V. Club
1. The Red Pony (John Steinbeck, 1933) - Where does the tradition of heart-rending children's classics in which a central character spends an entire book caring for and loving a very special animal, only to have it die in the end, usually granting life lessons, hard-won maturity, and heavy-duty pathos come from? Possibly from John Steinbeck's seminal, semi-autobiographical classic The Red Pony, in which a boy's beloved and highly symbolic pony loses a gruesome, graphic battle with illness. Like every other title on this list (but one), this depressing classic book later became a depressing classic movie.
2. Old Yeller (Fred Gipson, 1956) - About the only popular-entertainment-related childhood that can compete with the death of Bambi's mom is the death of Old Yeller, a brave farm dog who redeems himself for bad behavior by saving his master's life. As a reward, he gets a bullet to the head from his owner, who manfully saves Old Yeller from hydrophobia the only way he can. Fortunately, Old Yeller had a sequel - er, a son - to carry on the family tradition.
3. The Yearling (Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, 1938) - An earlier example of gritty miserabilism in which a young farm boy saves a cherished animal companion from pain by killing it himself, The Yearling is a bit unusual in that it's about a domesticated deer rather than a more traditional pet. The hero, Jody, adopts the deer as a fawn after his family slaughters its mother; he raises it to adulthood, whereupon he has to shoot it. It's like Bambi all over again, only Bambi and his mom both bite it in this version.
4. Ring of Bright Water (Gavin Maxwell, 1960) - In Gavin Maxwell's real-life-inspired book Ring of Bright Water, a stodgy Brit buys a pet otter, and finds that its fun-loving, insatiably curious nature livens up his life. The 1969 MGM film adaptation is sweet, low-key, almost naturalistic magic, right up to the point where a Scots road-worker offhandedly bludgeons the otter to death, and is then astonished at the horror of the woman who was taking it for a stroll. "It was only an otter!" he protests, not that the millions of shrieking children in the theaters likely heard him.
5. Julie of the Wolves (Jean Craighead George, 1972) - The only one of these books to feature a female protagonist, and - hmmm - the only one that hasn't been made into a film, Jean Craighead George's best-loved novel wriggles out of the mold a bit, in that the adored animals here aren't pets; they're wild wolves that adopt the eponymous Julie and enable her to survive after her home life turns spectacularly sour. But their freedom doesn't let them escape the animal snuff pattern: They die, and Julie winds up accepting the tragic ways of the world, and going home to their killer. Two sequels continued Julie's story for anyone whose heart didn't break with the first installment.
6. J.T. (Jane Wagner, 1969) - A poor boy coming of age in the Harlem ghetto comes back from the brink of apathetic criminality and finds self-worth in caring for something outside himself: a battered, one-eyed, scrawny old alley cat. Then he finds out how the world really works when some local kids who hate him make a point of tormenting the cat, and while trying to escape, it gets run over. Fortunately, in the way of uplifting children's stories about dead animals everywhere, J.T. is rewarded with a cute kitten, and the cycle of life continues.
7. Where the Red Fern Grows (Wilson Rawls, 1961) - Where the Red Fern Grows yanks extra-hard on the heartstrings, with not one but two loyal, beloved hounds dying at the end - one to save his master, the other out of grief for the first. Like so many of these books, it's a beautiful but anguished paean to love, devotion, and sacrifice, with a lengthy buildup in which the book's boy protagonist works his ass off for two years to buy the dogs - a pair of purebred coon hounds - and spends much of the rest of the book thoroughly enjoying his childhood with them. Then that childhood comes to an end with their deaths, which simultaneously save his life and let his family achieve a long-held dream. Yay?
8. Sounder (William H. Armstrong, 1970) - The dog companion of this classic about poor black Southern sharecroppers isn't as much the central focus as the animals in most of these books, in part because he gets shot early on while trying to protect his family, and he disappears for a good chunk of the story. But he get the title to himself, and his climactic death, peaceful and weirdly uplifting as it is, pretty much sums up the exhausting miseries his owners live in, and one of the few reliefs they can hope for.
9. Never Cry Wolf (Farley Mowat, 1963) - Wolves again, hunters again, the frozen arctic again...It's like Julie of the Wolves II, except with an adult white-guy hero instead of a teenaged Eskimo heroine. Oh, and this one came first. The gorgeous film version was directed by Carroll Ballard, who started his career with The Black Stallion and went on to helm Fly Away Home and Duma. In those stories, the people rather than the animals die sorry deaths to impart powerful symbolism, possibly indicating that authors have lightened up a little on the animal snuff in the last couple of decades. Or maybe just that the time is ripe for this decade's great animal-death novel.
10. [Your Own Story Here] - very likely, you read at least one of these books. You dreamed or day-dreamed then of the death of your own dog, or horse, or cat, or whatever-you-had. That classic nightmare is #10. Least favorite animal snuff story of all time...
No Dark Tower books?
10 Best Stephen King Short Stories
Not ranked according to best:
"One For The Road" from Night Shift (supernatural horror)
"I Am The Doorway" from Night Shift (sci-fi / horror)
"Survivor Type" from Skeleton Crew (realistic horror)
"The Jaunt" from Skeleton Crew (sci-fi / horror)
"The Body" from Different Seasons (realistic, not horror)
"Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption" from Different Seasons (realistic, not horror)
"Apt Pupil" from Different Seasons (realistic horror)
"The End Of The Whole Mess" from Nightmares and Dreamscapes (sci-fi / horror)
"The Man In The Black Suit" from Everything's Eventual (supernatural horror)
"1408" from Everything's Eventual (supernatural horror)
@ Dino: Nope. Too much, too big - series is incredible.
The Top Ten Things I Love to Hate
10 Favorite Published Joe Hill Stories or Novels
#10 - Heart-Shaped Box
#9 - "The Cape"
#8 - "Throttle" (with Stephen King)
#7 - "Dead-Wood"
#6 - "In The Rundown"
#5 - "Bobby Conroy Comes Back from the Dead"
#4 - "Abraham's Boys"
#3 - "Best New Horror"
#2 - "Voluntary Committal"
#1 - Horns
Thank you for mentioning Joe Hill. Horns is absolutely awesome!
^ Agreed. So excited about the movie starring Daniel Radcliffe...
Boone: SO glad you didn't leave out Survivor Type on King's shirt story list. It may be twenty years since I've read it, and I still think about it now and again. Lady fingers!
Top Ten Favorite Digits on My Hands
#1 - Right thumb
#2 - Left thumb
#3 - Right index finger
#4 - Right middle finger
#5 - Left index finger
#6 - Left middle finger
#7 - Right ring finger
#8 - Left ring finger
#9 - Right pinky
#10 - Left pinky
@ Dino - I do not understand why "Survivor Type" has not been made into a movie.
It can be updated so that the protagonist is using his cel phone's digital video recorder instead of writing...
Right! They could do it like a found-footage type thing. Any idea if anyone owns the rights? I'd be willing to bet ig anyone does, it's Frank Darabont.
Ten favorite Anti-heroes
1 Tender Branson (Survivor ~ novel by Chuck.P)
2 Travis Bickle (Taxi Driver)
3 Dexter Morgan (Dexter)
4 Ferris Bueller (Ferris Bueller's Day Off)
5 Sylar (Heroes)
6 William "D-Fens" Foster (Falling Down)
7 Edmund Blackadder (The Black Adder series)
8 Walter White (Breaking Bad)
9 Eric Cartman (South Park)
10 Gene Hunt (Life on Mars & Ashes to Ashes ~ UK version)
Top Ten bakery items mmmmmmm...
1 Coffee and Walnut cake
2 Black Forest Gateau
4 Danish Pastries
5 Almond Slices
6 Lemon Curd Tarts
10 Lemon Drizzle cake
First Top Ten stories by Famous Authors that I could find on the internet (not counting Solarcide)
1) In the Cemetery Where Al Jolson is Buried, Amy Hempel
2) A Study in Emerald, Neil Gaiman (opens as a .pdf)
3) Guts, by Chuck Palahniuk
4) A Good Man is Hard to Find, Flannery O'Conner
5) Midnight Raid, Brady Udall
6) Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been, Joyce Carol Oats
7) The Harvest, Amy Hempel
8) The Things They Carried, Tim O'Brien
9) Cathedral, by Raymond Carver
10) A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings: A Tale For Children, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Bonus, because I found these, while looking for other stories by the author:
11) The Man From the South, by Roald Dahl
12) HARRISON BERGERON, by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr (I really wanted to find Welcome to the Monkey House, but I couldn't find it)
Keep em coming people. Fun lists. Three copies to give out and they get special little prizes as well from me.
three stories that made me cry like a baby when I listened to them in audibook format
three books that made me think suicide may not be such a bad option after all
three books that made my heart lift up towards my mouth, like everything was going to be okay
the book that made me call my boyfriend and say, "I don't know whether I feel like killing myself or telling everyone that everything, ever, will be okay, forever and ever"
my favorite fast food and what I order there, in honor of Broken Piano for President (I just got the PDF for Everything Was Great!!)
Top 10 Things I Want to Put in Stories:
Ninja Priests - they're ninjas who are priests (as opposed to priests who are ninjas)
An immortal cowboy
10 Things I say to customers while working on a cocktail bar:
1 - What Can I get you?
2 - Yeah, it is quite expensive, but I don't make the prices.
3 - I'm not smiling because I'm tired.
4 - Why? Because when you go home, four hours later I finish my twelve hour shift at six am to be back in the next day.
5 - A Mojito does have soda water in it yes.
6 - Oh you used to work in a bar so know best? That's funny, because I'm working on a bar. Right now.
7 - Ordering a bottle of sparkling wine and drinking it out of champagne glasses? Watch out Jay-Z.
8 - I seem like I don't like you? No, I just have a perfect discontempt.
9 - It's not buying me a drink if you buy two and expect one of them for free.
10 - Allow me to move onto the next customer, to have the exact same conversation.
Top 10 people I want reading the audio-book of my first novel:
10. Al pacino
9. Michael Rooker
8. Steve Buschemi
7. Kathlene Turner
6. Tommy Flannigan (the Scottish guy from Sons of Anarchy)
5. Henry Rollins
4. Lauren Bacall
3. Tim Waits
2. Sean Connery
1. Alan Rickman
Honorable mention for deceased candidates: Orson Welles, Peter Lorre, Humphrey Bogart, Betty Davis, Katherine Hepburn.
Same as above if it's a comedy/satire novel:
10. William Shatner
9. Don Rickles
8. Joe Pesci
7. Ricky Gervais
6. Wanda Sykes
5. The Dos Equis guy
4. George Takei
3. James Earl Jones (Darth Vader reading your comedy would rule!)
2. Jeff Bridges (as 'The Dude')
1. Betty White
Ten things you get used to after working in a hotel:
3. Vietnamese food (specifically pho but really all Vietnamese food).
4. Bloody Mary(s).
7. Waffle House.
8. TV Marathon.
9. The Flea Market.
Top Ten Things to Watch on Halloween
Trick ‘r Treat
Tales from the Crypt (HBO series)
Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead
The Cabin in the Woods
Shaun of the Dead
A Nightmare on Elm Street
The Evil Dead series
The Nightmare Before Christmas
Top Ten Songs to Listen to on Halloween
Somebody’s Watching Me
Nightmare on My Street
Top Ten Worst Porn Names for Authors
Cory “Doctor “O’”
Anus Grey [Anne Brontë]
@ Bret - that last list... perfect, Dean Cunts, haha!
Ten Examples of Television Excellence:
"The Man Who Was Death," Tales from the Crypt
"The Monsters are Due on Maple Street," The Twilight Zone
"Best Friends Forever," South Park
"Are You Now or Have You Ever Been," Angel
"Devil's Trap," Supernatural
"Aerodynamics of Gender," Community
"Death Be Not Proud," Boston Legal
"Full Measure," Breaking Bad
"Getting Closer," Dollhouse
@Bret: "Full Measures" from Breaking Bad may be the finest hour ever made for TV. Most people remember Walt running over and shooting that gang banger at the end, but Mike's monolgue about when he was a beat cop was just as awesome.
Ten Awesome Short Stories
"Flowers for Algernon," Daniel Keyes
"The Cask of Amontillado," Edgar Allan Poe
"The Fog Horn," Ray Bradbury
"Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Secret House of the Night of Dread Desire" and "Other People," Neil Gaiman
"Mantage," Richard Matheson
"Winter Dreams," F. Scott Fitzgerald"
"So Much Water So Close to Home," Raymond Chandler
"A Scandal in Bohemia," Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
"Sheep Meadow Story," Jack Ketchum
"An Occurence at Owl Creek Bridge" and "Chickamauga," Ambrose Bierce
Top Ten Things Not To Do At a Funeral
1. Do not take more than 2 ativan and consume more than 2 glasses of wine fifteen minutes prior to funeral, if funeral is to last longer than fifteen minutes.
2. No open mic after the eulogy.
3. No more than 3 songs, maximum, for any powerpoint/photo tribute.
4. No Nickelback during said powerpoint/photo tribute.
5.If there are unwanted people in attendance, scenes are best thrown outside of the funeral home, not inside of it.
6. The Airing of Grievances are still required to be conducted during traditional Festivus activities, not at the memorial service.
7. If speaking during the funeral, your nervous breakdown during college and the deceased's involvement with AADAC/NARC-Anon are not relevant.
8. It is not appropriate to wish the mourners "every happiness," during any speech.
9. Eulogy, from εὐλογία, eulogia, Classical Greek for "good words,") is a speech or writing in praise of a person or thing, especially one recently dead or retired. Anything that falls outside of the scope of "good," is not appropriate.
10. Balloons are not a substitute for flowers or donations in memory of...
lol @ drea. Good stuff. Also- bump. A week left people. Write some top tens between those WAR stories.
Best breweries i've been to:
1. New Belgium - Fort Collins, Colorado
2. New Glarus - New Glarus, Wisconsin
3. Three Floyds - Munster, Indiana
4. Southern Star - Conroe, Texas
5. Rahr and Sons - Fort Worth, Texas
6. Breckenridge Brewery - Denver, Colorado
7. Saint Arnold's - Houston, Texas
8. Goose Island - Chicago, Illinois
9. City Acre Brewing - Houston, Texas
10. Rubicon Brewing - Sacramento, California
best cities I've ever been to
Top ten list of people I'm in love with:
YES, I'M KIDDING. (kinda)
Ok I'll take this seriously. Top ten romantic movies of all time. Don't judge.
1. Somewhere in Time
2. House of Flying Daggers
3. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
6. Hanover Street
7. 500 Days of Summer
8. Lost in Translation
9. Brokeback Mountain
I'm judging you. This is my judging face.
I personally like Slumdog Millionaire and As Good as It Gets. Even Music and Lyrics.
Top Ten Songs I'd Like Played At My Funeral:
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Nobody's Baby Now
Billy Bragg - Must I Paint You A Picture
Lou Reed - Perfect Day
Bob Dylan - Don't Think Twice, It's Alright
Rocky Horror Picture Show - I'm Going Home
Dean & Britta - Teenage Lightning And Lonely Highways
Johnny Thunders - You Can't Put Your Arms Around A Memory
Louis Armstrong - What A Wonderful World
The Pogues - Rainy Night In Soho
Tom Waits - If I Have To Go
Top Ten Reasons I am not Writing.
Bret, you're right. I judge you too. I made a very subjective top 10.
Top 10 most subjective tops you can come up with:
1. WAR!!! (because we spend months talking (or at least thinking) about why our story should have won)
2. Best romantic movies ever (cause that love stuff is the same for everybody)
3. Best book ever/best writer (let's start that discussion again)
4. Best food anyone ever tasted (cause yeah, it doesn't depend at all on what you ate growing up)
5. Scariest movie ever (I'm so hard to scare these days!)
6. Best/coolest car ever (I pick based on color)
7. Most beautiful color ever (I know some people who actually like orange)
8. BFF (because no matter how many people tell you not to hang out with someone, you still do)
9. Best music ever (for example, I still like Michael Jackson, so sue me) (disclaimer: he's still very popular in Romania and I saw him in concert there)
10. Best top 10 (because of course, all of mine should be on top)
Still four or five days left here. Any more lists? There's been some great ones so far.
Martin, I'd just like to say you win for starting with that list. Bleed is probably my current life anthem.
In that spirit, and because I'm feeling particularly morbid, my list:
TOP TEN SUICIDE FANTASIES (in no particular order):
1. Get in front of an engine turbine on a 747.
2. Leap from an otherwise comical piece of architecture, such as a giant Bob's Big Boy statue.
3. Deep-fry your head in the kitchen of a local restaurant venue to go out with day-old donut or onion ring flavor.
4. Watch Amelie and The Human Centipede back-to-back repeatedly until brain hemorrhage.
5. Swallow handfuls of sponge toys that expand into animal shapes when wet, then chug one or two gallons of water.
6. Play Hotline Miami without cessation after consuming 2-3 sheets of LSD.
7. Incite a crowd to violent riot against your own demographic, then antagonize them with colorful expletives and gesticulations.
8. Fill a hot tub with double your body weight in red-bellied piranhas, then get in and turn the jets on full.
9. Take the protective cover off an industrial fan and insert your face.
10. Run up to an aging mobster and beat him repeatedly with a live trout.
This finishes up on Friday if anyone is wanting to throw in any last minute lists. been some great ones so far. You guys got a few more left in you?
Top Ten Things I Used To Do, But No Longer Do
Top Ten Things Avery Does Daily
1 Smoke crack
2 Lie to friends
3 Lie to the mirror
4 Eat hamburgers while dancing
5 Distill moonshine
6 Write terrible love letters
7 Have hot sex before bed
8 Sleep with a stuffed vegetable
9 Cut locks of stranger's hair
20 Look at pictures of vaginas
^ahahahahhahahahaha. too much.