Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Revival” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


3.77  ·  Rating details ·  89,925 ratings  ·  10,150 reviews
A dark and electrifying novel about addiction, fanaticism, and what might exist on the other side of life.

In a small New England town, over half a century ago, a shadow falls over a small boy playing with his toy soldiers. Jamie Morton looks up to see a striking man, the new minister. Charles Jacobs, along with his beautiful wife, will transform the local church. The men
Paperback, 403 pages
Published May 5th 2015 by Gallery Books (first published November 11th 2014)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Revival, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Cathy I was walking in Boston and saw him on the street. I started walking with him for about 2 blocks and we had a good talk but not about his books but…moreI was walking in Boston and saw him on the street. I started walking with him for about 2 blocks and we had a good talk but not about his books but about the Red Sox. A friend asked me if a told him how much I liked his books and I said no I didn't. I figured he would know that since I know who he was.(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.77  · 
Rating details
 ·  89,925 ratings  ·  10,150 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Revival
Edward Lorn
Nov 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm lost. Destroyed. Utterly exhausted. I don't think a work of fiction has ever affected me so entirely. I was there. And I wish I hadn't been, yet I do not regret reading it.

Forget Cujo and Pet Sematary, or any of his other dark and dreary novels. Revival is Stephen King's bleakest work to date. Mainly because it gives you hope. So much hope. And then it rips that hope, still beating, from your chest.

The title of this novel is literal in several ways. It's a revival of old school King, the
Jan 09, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve been married for over 25 years with a 30 year mortgage and raised three boys, I’ve been to Iraq, taken and passed the bar exam and am in private practice.

I don’t scare easy.

This book was scary.

This was old school, spooky / creepy STEPHEN FREAKING KING wake you up in the middle of the night ‘cause Barlow is sneaking down the hallway scary.

Carrie walking Cujo down Shining Lane as Christine drives by.


First of all, any book that begins with a quote from H.P. Lovecraft gets a quick and
Emily May
Nov 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014, horror
It's time for that approximately biannual event once again - Stephen King has released a new novel. And it's a good one.

I never know how to approach a review for a Stephen King book. I use a different tone when writing about different kind of novels - classics and literary fiction usually get one style of review, fantasy/paranormal and YA (genre fiction, basically) get another. But where does Mr King fit?

The "problem" with Stephen King is that he writes such engrossing, imaginative pageturners
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Something happened.

Mother fuck..I'm gonna have nightmares from this shit.

The story begins with young Jamie outside playing war with some army soldiers his sister had gotten him for his birthday. A man's shadow falls across him and so begins what Jamie calls his "fifth business."

This book is somewhat of a coming of age story. The reader gets to grow up with Jamie and we are all involved with Reverend Charles Jacobs too..whether we want to be or not.
Jamie's story takes you through five decades
Alisi ☆ wants to read too many books ☆
Let me say something up front: King is my favorite author. I'm not a 'hater' by any stretch of the imagination. I've read all his books multiple times. This novel is just that bad. I realize I'm going to get a whole lot of hate for this review but I refuse to hold my tongue on this. This isn't 'classic King'. There is no 'slow burn'. This is just lazy, shitty writing with an overly hyped and dramatic ending that was stupid and cliche.

One of the things I loved about King (yes, past tense there)
From the synopsis on Stephen King’s website:

"This rich and disturbing novel spans five decades on its way to the most terrifying conclusion Stephen King has ever written."

That’s a bold statement that sets the bar very high for Revival. So does it clear it?

Almost. I think. If it doesn’t then it comes damn close which still makes this a pretty impressive achievement for Uncle Steve at this point in his long career.

Jamie Morton first meets Reverend Charles Jacobs when he’s a 6 year old kid in Maine
Will Byrnes
Nov 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this is how we bring about our own damnation, you know—by ignoring the voice that begs us to stop. To stop while there’s still time.
There is a somewhat leisurely feel to Stephen King’s latest, Revival. Dramatic events are sprinkled throughout the narrative, but the story moves along at what seems a deliberate pace. I am reminded of Ted Williams’s advice for batters, “wait, wait, wait, then quick, quick, quick.” The final, high voltage scenes of Revival pay for the whole.

Our narrator, Jamie
Dan Schwent
May 01, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
When Jamie Morton first encounters the Reverend Charles Daniel Jacobs, he is six years old. Jacobs cures his brother's muteness, only to leave town a broken man when his wife and son are killed. Jamie and the Rev will cross paths again and again as the Rev seeks to master what he calls the secret electricity, the energy that powers the universe...

I found this book to be an extremely mixed bag, which you'll read in a moment.

Revival follows the life of Jamie Morton, a rhythm guitarist, whose life
Justin Tate
Dec 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was about ready to give Stephen King a Pulitzer for this one. The character development was beyond outstanding and the impending doom so delicious I couldn't stop turning the pages. Unfortunately the ending sucked. There's really no other way to put it. Totally random, off the wall, lame excuse to pay homage to Frankenstein and Lovecraft. I like H.P. Lovecraft and Mary Shelley too, but you can't write a glorious novel as emotionally rich as Shawshank and then toss in beasties and call it good. ...more
Mohammed Arabey
Aug 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

God, The cover is so attractive, yet deceiving..

It's not Horror, not fast thriller and not That creepy..

Mostly it's about coming of age, Nostalgia..It's about Life..

Life; Movies & "Paperbacks", Sex & Drugs..And TOO MUCH Rock & Roll..

It's about a Shadow with no light..getting darker & darker..till you lose faith that there's any light..
And the only light you'll see the Thunderous Lightnings.
Yeah,it's also about losing faith. Not just about life, but also about what's

What the hell do you read next after you finish a book like this!?

While not a full on frontal assault horror novel in the tradition of The Shining or Pet Sematary, Revival definitely ranks as one of the darkest, most unsettling books King has written in a long time. It's a slow burn that touches on a lot of themes we've come to expect from King in his golden years -- family, nostalgia, grief and loss. King turned 67 this year and he seems to have reached a point in his life where the "big
Nov 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"People say that where there’s life, there’s hope, and I have no quarrel with that, but I also believe the reverse.
There is hope, therefore I live."
I am a true Stephen King collector, a terminal case of his Constant Reader. Year after year I get my hands on his stories, and almost with no exceptions my admiration for the man continues to grow. I love his disturbingly vivid imagination, the rare quality of his storytelling voice, his ability to suck you into a tale he weaves, and an uncanny
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

4.5 Stars

While I was reading this happened . . .

Commercial Photography

And now that I’m done and ready to write a review, I’m thinking “why the f*&^ do I do this to myself?!?!?!?” There’s no way I’ll be able to give this book the review it deserves – flagging the crap out of it is just like a salt-in-the-wound type of reminder of that fact. That leaves me with the question of “where to begin?” The most obvious place would be the beginning . . .

The dust jacket of Revival promised a a contemporary Gothic novel in the "great American tradition of Frank Norris, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Edgar Allan Poe, which would span five decades and contain the most terrifying conclusion Stephen King has ever written. Stephen King himself said that the book is too scary", and that he doesn't want to think about it anymore, calling it "a nasty, dark piece of work.". This is his second book to be released this year, after the disappointing Mr. Mercedes. ...more
Ruth Turner

If someone had sat me down, told me they were going to read to me, and asked me to guess the author, the only reason I would have guessed correctly were the mentions of Castle Rock, Jerusalem’s Lot and Joyland. Otherwise I wouldn’t have had a clue.

There’s something missing in this dark story, and it’s a connection to the characters. It’s one thing I love about King, his ability to breathe life into the wonderful characters that people his books. But this one left me flat.

It’s not unusual for me
Will M.
Nov 19, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, paranormal, horror
"People always want a reason for the bad things in life. Sometimes there ain't one."

Almost everyone assured me that this is King's scariest, darkest, and creepiest novel to date. I don't completely disagree with the numerous acclaims, but I am considering this novel as heavily flawed. The plot was immersing, but only to a certain extent. I now understand why some people warned me that this novel was a bit dragging in the middle. A lot of uninteresting things did happen in the middle, and it
Andrea ❤Ninja Bunneh❤

Anyone, and I mean anyone, who thinks Uncle Stevie has lost some of his edge over the last few years shall now eat his/her words. Me being one of them. Now I know you're saying to yourself - what the fuck, Andrea? You love Stephen King! You've been reading him for three decades practically! How dare you say such things! Have you lost your damn mind?

And I do. I adore King. He's the only author that I have followed religiously since pre-teendom. The only author that although some books don't
Reading Corner
2.5 stars

This book is so underwhelming and over hyped.I've only read two other King books but after reading this,my opinion of the other two has completely gone up.I found most of Revival incredibly boring and tedious to get through.There's no real build up in this book like King has in his other books,the atmosphere never felt tense and there was no real suspense,until maybe the end.

I thought the story was really boring,until the end when everything adds up but even that ending couldn't save
I’m not sure that I have ever felt as conflicted about my feelings on a book by Stephen King as I do about Revival. I loved it. I hated it. It was ok. It was brilliant. It was a letdown. It was weird. It was something.

I was hooked right from the start. If there is one thing King is top-notch at- it’s creating a rich atmosphere about youth growing up in the good ole days. I think that is why IT will remain my all-time favorite book. There is nothing better than King writing about the 1950’s. I
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
For a while, I actually thought that this would be the first book I would give five stars to in ages. But in the end, it just got four stars. Why? Because of the ending. I just didn't like it very much. It was very depressing and for some reason, it felt like a letdown. All I could think was: "Is that all, have I been reading all day for that kind of ending?" I would rather have had a more ambiguous ending to the story. Instead of just the bleak ending. (I need to read something cheerful after ...more
Katherine Elizabeth
My review for this was somehow deleted -- so, yay for me! Regardless, this book wasn't amazing -- I still remember having to force myself to read it. So, I am tempted to lower the rating, because 3 stars seems pretty high. But, I won't.

I swear, the only reason I gave this 3 stars was because the guy I liked (years ago) had enjoyed this and I was determined to like it, too -- so we could have something to talk about. It's funny how a crush can make you like a book more than you actually would've.
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
Now I'm convinced. They've cloned him.

2.4 stars
Nov 25, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2touchup
ReVolting Revival

"My mind raced
And I thought what could I do (Thunder)
And I knew
There was no help, no help from you (Thunder)"
AC/DC, "Thunderstruck," 1990

King's wizardry charges through Jamie Morton's ominous odyssey into the darkest forces of evil. The novel methodically intensifies a menace like the bass drum in the "2001 Space Odyssey" theme (from Strauss's Also sprach Zarathustra) as the Dickensian Jamie travels deeper and deeper into a supernatural storm with a defrocked Methodist minister
☽¸¸.I am¸¸.•*¨ The ¸¸.•*¨*Phoenix¨*•♫♪ ☾
That’s how you know you’re home, I think, no matter how far you’ve gone from it or how long you’ve been in some other place. Home is where they want you to stay longer.

I don't know how this Stephen King book escaped my radar back in 2014: I am the biggest King fan and I usually read everything he publishes. Unfortunately, I haven't been very lucky with the most recent books. This one, however, made me feel those good ol' King vibes all over again and oh am I glad I read it!

For starters, the
Manuel Antão
Oct 21, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

Cthulhu is back: "Revival" by Stephen King

King’s 66th book (published 11/11/2014).

“That is not dead which can eternal lie. And with strange aeons even death may die.” (H.P. Lovecraft)

I’ve never been a Stephen King die-hard fan. There were a few of his novels that I elevated to Nirvana status (eg, “The Stand” being one of them).

When I think about King I always have two things in my mind:

- He once said, I don’t remember where, and I
Jonathan Janz
Dec 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In his best short fiction, Edgar Allan Poe achieved a "unity of effect." In tales like "The Tell-Tale Heart" and "Masque of the Red Death," the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Each word, each turn of phrase flows toward a swirling vortex, a glowing, pulsing spire that pierces the steely thunderheads and rivets your gaze even as it threatens to lay waste to everything around it.

More on that later.

This unity of effect is difficult enough to create in a short piece of fiction. Thomas
Adam Light
I'm just going to say this is the best King novel I have read in a long time.
I wrote two different reviews (long and thoughtful, both) and lost internet signal before saving either one.
Not happening again, folks.
Buy this and dive in to a genuine treat. King is at his best. It starts out as a coming of age tale told in first person. The narrator, Jaime first meets Charles Jacobs as a six-year old and then their lives intersect over the next fifty plus years. Their fates are seemingly interlocked.
Nov 11, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
I'm feeling very ambiguous about Revival. It's far too ambiguous in parts, and not nearly ambiguous enough in others. It lacks any sort of subtlety in some aspects, and is much too subtle in others. Overall, this is a solid tale from Stephen King, but the monstrous epic I was hoping for is left lurking in the darkness, just off the page.

The first act is absolutely stellar, with King doing what he does best. When it comes to the portrayal of childhood and coming of age, I'm not sure there's
Scott Sigler
Nov 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
While the spooky/gore factor is way down from old-school King, this one felt like curling up in a familiar, tattered old blanket you've had since you were a kid. A fascinating story that explores a lifelong (albeit intermittent) relationship between two men.

Think of the pseudoscience of FIRESTARTER or CARRIE mixed in with the slow-build magical implications of THE DARK HALF or IT, and you're in the right mental place to enjoy this one.

I pounded the audiobook during a move. Having King in my
May 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
Absolutely great novel about ageing, pain, addiction, religion, quacks and death. King really manages to get you directly into the plot and you're getting older with his main character. Charlie Jacobs is extremely well drawn by the author. The end culminates into a Lovecractian ending. What a pageturning read. King on top on his abilities. Top recommendation!
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Stephen King 2019...: My Birthday Month woohoo!!! 13 12 Mar 26, 2019 07:13AM  
Stephen King Fans: Revival 243 719 Mar 25, 2019 03:48PM  
American actor killed in Ireland car crash? 6 157 Jan 23, 2019 02:04AM  
Which type of Stephen King fan are you? 24 301 Jul 01, 2018 02:52PM  
Horror Aficionados : December Group Read #2- Revival 80 134 Jan 24, 2018 12:16PM  
Around the Year i...: Revival, by Stephen King 1 11 Aug 24, 2017 02:53AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Long Walk
  • Roadwork
  • NOS4A2
  • Blaze
  • Heart-Shaped Box
  • The Regulators
  • Rage
  • Thinner
  • The Fireman
  • Horns
  • The Running Man
  • Full Throttle
  • The Troop
  • Strange Weather
  • A Head Full of Ghosts
  • The Cabin at the End of the World
  • The Breathing Method
  • The Haunting of Hill House
See similar books…
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, ...more
“Home is where they want you to stay longer.” 158 likes
“People say that where there’s life, there’s hope, and I have no quarrel with that, but I also believe the reverse.
There is hope, therefore I live.”
More quotes…