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Children of the Corn

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  6,298 ratings  ·  221 reviews
Driving through the cornfields in rural Nebraska, Burt and Vicky run over a young boy—only to discover that they may not be responsible for his death. Out in the corn, something is watching them, and help is nowhere to be found.

From the unrivaled master of horror and the supernatural, Stephen King. “Children of the Corn,” first collected in the extraordinary collection Nig
ebook, 50 pages
Published (first published March 1977)
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Average rating 3.90  · 
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 ·  6,298 ratings  ·  221 reviews

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Fantastically creepy, eerie, and spooky short story. What it lacked in length, it more than made up for in atmosphere. There's the desolate town of Gatlin, Nebraska. The strong sense of foreboding in the air. Not to mention the cornfields. I thoroughly enjoyed this one.
Brett C
Apr 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: stephen-king
I really enjoyed this creepy short story. The story pretty much follows the movie but does a better job at delivering the eerie Christian-fanatic mixed with pagan elements.

The creepy part for me was when main character Burt goes into the abandoned church. The imagery, the altered Bible verses from the Book of Job 38:1-4 to include the verbiage 'He Who Walks Behind The Rows', and the books titled:
'Thus, Let the Iniquitious Be Cut Down So That The Ground May Be Fertile Again, Saith The Lord God o
May 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
I chose to end the month with a final Stephen King short story, picking one that mixes a bucolic setting with a spine-tingling plot. When Burt and Vicky run over a boy in rural Nebraska, they are panicked. However, once they examine the boy, they discover that the car accident was not the primary cause of the boy’s injuries and death, as his neck has been slit. Driving into Gatlin, they try to alert someone as to what has happened, only finding remnants of a corn-based religious group, strong on ...more
May 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Something happened back in 1964......

Embarking on an extended road trip, Burt and Vicky continually argue about everything and their troubled marriage...but soon find there is much more to worry the unknown object that has just vanished "under the T-Bird's bumper."

As the vacationing couple investigate what they hit on the deserted road, a feeling of unrest overcomes them..."someone's watching us"...and they hurriedly get underway, with their burden, to the nearest to

Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror
Feb 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I had an itch to re read this story and my goodness it's a good one. This is one of those shorts you wish was a novella or even a full novel--there's plenty here! I love this crazy fighting couple that happen upon a freaky little ghost down full of wicked children! And what's in the Corn??? The one who walks behind the rows...
Caidyn (BW Reviews; he/him/his)
This review can also be found here!

I got into a huge Stephen King mood the other day, so I started searching around. This one was there for Kindle for, like, $1. I had to. I just had to. So, I got it because I remember liking the movie and I forgot he actually wrote it. (Isn’t it crazy how you can forget his huge body of work?)

But, since this is such a short story, this is going to be a pretty short review.

I thought it was a solid story. It had a great basis and it was interesting the whole time
Really two stars for the over-the-top story, but I'm adding an extra one for the creepy Midwestern gothic aesthetics. Ghost town, dirty roads, abandoned church, corn fields... just so, so so spooky. I definitely need to read one of King's full-length novels.
Jess the Shelf-Declared Bibliophile
Highly creepy and well told in such a short amount of pages. I wish it were a full length book!
Oct 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Horror Short Story
Recommended to Jason by: Night Shift by Stephen King
I finally made it to the main reason I wanted to read Night Shift, and it was worth the wait. "Children of the Corn" is one of my favorite Stephen King movies. Yeah, yeah, I know it sucks, but that doesn't stop me from loving it anyway. Turns out they took a few liberties with the original story.

Stephen King Surprise Face photo StephenKingSurprise.jpg
"You're kidding!"

Nope, afraid not. However, I really like the story version better than the movie. First off the story in the book makes much more sense, and suspension of disbelief isn't strained to
I really only love a few Stephen King books. I always preferred John Saul when I was going through my horror period. This one however was not bad.

Creepy children are a great subject of horror and I did enjoy this book moderately. My favorite by King will always be Thinner. I saw the movie as well and besides the creepy kids eerie resemblement to the Trump kids, it was not very good. I find King's books are always better then the movies.

This is one I plan to reread soon.
catherine ♡
Oct 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories, horror
This was a good one. But I still love corn too much to be scared.
Oct 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Quickly creating ominous atmosphere is a remarkable talent of the short story writer. The proper short story does not waste time procrastinating what it is ultimately attempting to achieve. Stephen King’s Children of the Corn creates the bleak spooky atmosphere of an menacing an immanent doom right from the start. Vicky and Burt, a married couple attempting to rekindle their love for one another are driving coast to coast for vacation. They are in Nebraska driving through an endless sight of cor ...more
Dylan Perry
Nov 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After seeing the Children of the Corn movie last year and now having read the story, I'm happy to say they're apples and oranges.

The film does the short story a disservice. This was far more interesting and better executed than a tale of creepy cornfields has any right to be. Though, it's not perfect. Adverbs are littered throughout. And the final scene is unnecessary, and mostly there for exposition. When I read the line, "And here, in the heartland of Nebraska, in the corn, there was nothing
Shawn Deal
Jul 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
I read two stories for Halloween every year. This story, obviously, and the Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allen Poe. Both stories are told with a subtle craft of the writers at the peak of their abilities. In my opinion, this is the best of Stephen King’s short stories. It is certainly my personal favorite. Where the story does show its age a bit, it is still something horrifying to even today’s standards. The religious mainia that strikes a group of children centered around corn, is so well draw ...more
The Grim Reader
Jun 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A classic horror short from King.

A classic from King! It's been years since I read this. Fear the children in rural Nebraska and He Who Walks Behind The Rows! I really wish this had been expanded into a novel. Fab.
Mike Narvaez
Oct 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is such an amazing and creepy - very scary - short story I wish it were a long novel. King manages to tell in just a few pages what many authors couldn't do in hundreds of pages. Just another example that you don't need many pages to tell great stories. Recommended for all. Just avoid reading it in the night. I learned that the hard way.
Quentin Wallace
Sep 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The overall creepiness of this story rivals almost anything I've read. It's almost more of what you never saw than what actually happens. If you are a fan of atmospheric horror you should like this story. Just eerie.
Jun 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This story just made me realize where all small town cult horror films come from, a horror classic, perfect king stuff of nightmares, love it!
Rebecca McNutt
Mar 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
One of Stephen King's best short stories; I loved the 1984 film (I first saw it in grade seven and loved the scenery, the soundtrack, everything), so it was really exciting and nostalgic to be able to read the short story that brought out the whole film series.
Sep 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing

Buck Owens
Tammy Wynette
Leaning on the Everlasting Arms - Alan Jackson
The Phantom of the Opera
Dec 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
i have questions!! I love short stories, but this one should've been longer!!!

A couple embark on a road trip to California in hopes that this will save their marriage. They make it to Gatlin, Nebraska and the wife is immediately on high alert. While fighting again, he becomes distracted trying to prove her wrong and he does not notice when a child runs in their path and they run him over. Once out of the car, he notices that the child's throat was slit ...and the husband is determined to hand ov
Monica Go
It was a fast creepy read.
Hard to put down but I wanted it to be more. Thought it could be a little bit longer , I don't know.
It probably works good as a movie (which is done and I'm going to watch soon).
Freesiab (Bookish Review)
Oct 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: five-star
What’s not to love about a perfectly well crafted horror story in under 100 pages! Brilliant.
This Film is Lit
It’s got corn. It’s got children. This movie really lives up to its title. It’s Children of the Corn, and This Film is Lit.

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Apr 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
I had a little bit of time, had this laying around and although I've seen the movie quite a few times I had never gotten around to reading the short story (about 30 pages) Children of the Corn.

Some of the fun was gone because I knew the premise but enough was different in the movie vs. the short story that it was still very enjoyable - in fact after the initial setup, most everything about every characters "ending" was totally different.

Trying not to spoil anything so I'll just say that I really
My whole life all I did was talk shit about Stephen King, because I figured... How good of an author could you be when you put out, like, 50 books per year? How quality could those be???
Found this on the Kindle store and thought I should at least give him a shot.
This story was the perfect amount of creepy. It had a great build up, chills and all.
But then the climactic thing happened I was kind of just... ehhhh.

Overall it was a good story, but it didn't quite SCARE me like I was expecting/hoping.
Jeff Swystun
Aug 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
King channels Shirley Jackson in this well known short story. Unfortunately the campy movie version and sequels has turned it into a series of pop culture jokes. When I first read this in the collection Night Shift it gave me the willies. I puzzled over how a small town could go under such a creepy transformation without going noticed...think hard about that after you read it. The story originally appeared in Penthouse in 1977. I had forgot that King made the main character a Vietnam vet. That s ...more
Ashot Martirosyan
May 20, 2014 rated it liked it
South Park made me read this :)
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Stephen Edwin King was born the second son of Donald and Nellie Ruth Pillsbury King. After his father left them when Stephen was two, he and his older brother, David, were raised by his mother. Parts of his childhood were spent in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where his father's family was at the time, and in Stratford, Connecticut. When Stephen was eleven, his mother brought her children back to Durham, M ...more

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