Stepheny's Reviews > The Tommyknockers

The Tommyknockers by Stephen King
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it was ok
Read 2 times. Last read September 2, 2014 to October 9, 2014.

2.5

Let 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 book more this time around than I did the first time. I think, now that I am older, I am more aware 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.
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Reading Progress

December 8, 2011 – Shelved (Mass Market Paperback Edition)
February 21, 2014 – Shelved as: all-... (Mass Market Paperback Edition)
September 2, 2014 – Started Reading
September 2, 2014 – Shelved
September 2, 2014 –
11.0% "Re-read!! :) \n \n When I first read this, I loved the first 85% of this book. The ending was such a let down. I hope my re-read gives me a greater appreciation for the ending. \n \n If not, it's only 28 hours of my life wasted...."
September 4, 2014 –
19.0% "I love the buildup in this book. King builds up anticipation like no other."
September 11, 2014 –
23.0%
September 20, 2014 –
38.0% "The "'magic trick" has always been one of the stand out parts of the Tommyknockers for me. It thoroughly disturbed me and I found I thought about it a lot when I first read it...it never left me. I loved listening to it this time around. Just one of those things that stuck with me I guess..."
September 21, 2014 –
45.0% "Gahhhh. The dolls!"
September 27, 2014 –
54.0%
October 4, 2014 –
60.0%
October 5, 2014 –
70.0% "Book III: The Tommyknockers. Let's do this."
October 7, 2014 –
81.0% "Got a lot of cleaning done tonight!"
October 8, 2014 –
95.0% "Aw yeah. Gard's gonna drive a spaceship."
October 9, 2014 –
98.0% "52 minutes of listening time left to go...."
October 9, 2014 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-50 of 55 (55 new)


Dustin Only 2.5 stars..? *Sad day* I'm sorry it didn't do more for you the 2nd time around..


Stepheny I actually liked it less this time around. I think when I was younger I found all of his political ranting to be revolutionary and now I find it tedious... I hate political statements in my books. LOL


Dustin Yes, I just noticed that... Whereas I liked it a lot more the 2nd time around. Is there a lot of political rants here? I think I remember a few of those, but nothing really overt, unless you know what to look for..


message 4: by Steven (new)

Steven May I ask what the other ones of King's are that you don't like?


message 5: by TL (new)

TL *hugs* great review hun, sorry you didn't enjoy it this time around


Stepheny Steven wrote: "May I ask what the other ones of King's are that you don't like?"

The Colorado Kid and Full Dark, No Stars


Stepheny TL wrote: "*hugs* great review hun, sorry you didn't enjoy it this time around"

Thanks, TL. No worries. I wanted to give it another shot!


message 8: by Neil (new)

Neil I just spoke to stephen king about this review and he is terribly upset. lol. shame on you stephany for disliking the king.


Stepheny Haha ohhhh no! Sorry, Sai King! :(


message 10: by TL (new)

TL Stepheny wrote: "TL wrote: "*hugs* great review hun, sorry you didn't enjoy it this time around"

Thanks, TL. No worries. I wanted to give it another shot!"


It's all good right? :)
Better luck on your next read!


message 11: by Lisa (new)

Lisa "Another thing that annoyed me- useless shit." LOL! I love that line, mostly because I've been there :)


Beverly I felt this way about the ending of The Stand. The story was sooooo good, and then came the ending. I was pissed beyond belief because I had invested all that time reading it. I was in the living room with my dad when I finished it...I flung it on the floor, looked up at him, and said "What the hell was that?!" LOL. Oddly enough, it's still one of my favorites, because I love everything but the ending. Even Stephen King admits endings are one of his weaknesses. *sigh* The Tommyknockers is one of my least favorite. I have it, and have been thinking about rereading it, but I know I'm probably going to feel pretty "meh" about it.


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

I'm in shock!


message 14: by Steven (new)

Steven Well dang I still have all three of your least favorites left to read on my King read em all! :(


Stepheny @TL- Thanks, lady! :)

@Lisa- I am so glad that you appreciated that line! haha. You know me- I don't sugarcoat much!! LOL

@Bev- the Stand didn't bother me as much as this one. If anything I felt the Stand was a little predictable and underwhelming, but this one just felt...cheap and wrong.

@Kat- Shock?! LOL That I would dislike a King book? There aren't many! haha. But yes, there's a handful I can't do...

@Steven- Different strokes for different folks- it might be the best book of your life. I say read them all and we'll compare notes. I love a good discussion, especially when someone points out some of the good stuff I may have missed. I tend to obsess over the things I hate and can't look past. :D


message 16: by Steven (new)

Steven I know that he wrote the Tommyknockers while he was seriously drugged, so that explains that one... haha!


Stepheny Steven wrote: "I know that he wrote the Tommyknockers while he was seriously drugged, so that explains that one... haha!"

Haha yeah you can definitely tell!! LOL


Beverly Isn't this one of the ones he doesn't remember writing? This one and Cujo?

I read The Tommyknockers later than The Stand, so I think I was more upset about The Stand because it was the first time King had let me down. I wasn't crazy about The Tommyknockers from the beginning, so when the ending sucked, I wasn't happy about it, but I didn't feel as cheated because I wasn't completely in love with the book, either.

I guess he can't be perfect all the time. His percentage is pretty good, though. :-P


nathan best football player evvveeerrrrr I have not read any of his books but wich one is your favorite book by him?


Stepheny IT. Hands down my favorite.


message 21: by Ruth (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ruth Turner How was the audio? I've decided to do a re-read of all King's books in chronological order and on audio if I think the audio is worth the purchase price. I didn't like this book the first and only time I read it so I'm a bit dubious about purchasing the audio.


message 22: by Deanna (new)

Deanna Recently bought IT and The Shining. Which would be better to read first? I'm new to Stephen King. Tried reading Under the Dome in high school and was very confused. Have to try King again he has such a reputation


message 23: by Ruth (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ruth Turner Deanna wrote: "Recently bought IT and The Shining. Which would be better to read first? I'm new to Stephen King. Tried reading Under the Dome in high school and was very confused. Have to try King again he has su..."

I loved both IT and The Shining, but IT is one of my all-time favourites. I have to admit though that I didn't like the ending, but apart from that it"s excellent. I'll look forward to your reviews :)


message 24: by Ruth (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ruth Turner Stepheny wrote: "IT. Hands down my favorite."

Mine as well. along with The Stand and 'Salem's Lot. Have you reviewed many of King's books? Your profile is set to private so I couldn't snoop through your shelves. :)


Stepheny @Ruth- the audio version is done well, but I still didn't enjoy the book itself.

@Deannna- I would definitely read IT but the Shining is excellent too. Either way you can't go wrong! :)


message 26: by Ruth (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ruth Turner Stepheny wrote: "@Ruth- the audio version is done well, but I still didn't enjoy the book itself.

@Deannna- I would definitely read IT but the Shining is excellent too. Either way you can't go wrong! :)"


Thanks, Stepheny.


Rachel I just finished reading The Tommyknockers for the first time and your review pretty much sums up how I am feeling. I love Stephen King so it's always a big disappointment when I read the rare book of his that doesn't cut it.


message 28: by [deleted user] (new)

King himself said it was an awful book, written while he was fighting substance abuse. Basically a ripoff of an old British TV thing called "Quartermass And The Pit". He also claimed to be influenced by Ol' H.P.'s "The Colour Out of Space'"


Rachael Buckley Oh, thank heavens it's not just me! This book (the ending, or lack thereof) turned me off of Stephen King for more than 10 years. It's only in the last few years that I've come back and picked up some of the good stuff I missed. (And got to ignore some of the "eh" stuff.)


Moyabrian i actually enjoyed this book am surprised at all the people who loathed this book


message 31: by Jane (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jane Myers I so agree. I'm trying to read all my Stephen King books and so many are just full of useless info. I've skipped over whole pages without reading a word just to get to a point where something happens. I always loved his books but they have so lost their appeal


Stepheny Rachel wrote: "I just finished reading The Tommyknockers for the first time and your review pretty much sums up how I am feeling. I love Stephen King so it's always a big disappointment when I read the rare book ..."

Aw! No! It is not just you. I think this one had the potential to be great but just wasn't.


Stepheny Starland wrote: "King himself said it was an awful book, written while he was fighting substance abuse. Basically a ripoff of an old British TV thing called "Quartermass And The Pit". He also claimed to be influenc..."

I remember reading something about that. I think this might be the book he says he doesn't even remember writing?


Stepheny Rachael wrote: "Oh, thank heavens it's not just me! This book (the ending, or lack thereof) turned me off of Stephen King for more than 10 years. It's only in the last few years that I've come back and picked up s..."

Well, I am glad you came back. I think the majority of his work is great while he has a couple duds scattered here and there.


Stepheny Moyabrian wrote: "i actually enjoyed this book am surprised at all the people who loathed this book"

Glad to hear that you enjoyed it. :) One of the great things about the reading community- no two people ever read the same book. ;)


Stepheny Jane wrote: "I so agree. I'm trying to read all my Stephen King books and so many are just full of useless info. I've skipped over whole pages without reading a word just to get to a point where something happe..."

I don't think they are all this way. This is one that stands out to me, but for the most part I really love his work. :)


Ashley *Hufflepuff Kitten* I know he said he doesn't remember writing Cujo, but I believe he's said Tommyknockers and Dreamcatcher are his least favorites of his catalogue.


Stepheny Ashley *Hufflepuff Kitten* wrote: "I know he said he doesn't remember writing Cujo, but I believe he's said Tommyknockers and Dreamcatcher are his least favorites of his catalogue."

Ohhh ok. Couldn't remember. Thanks, Ash!


message 39: by Ben (new)

Ben Tufts You think this is a brick? The longest thing I've ever read is 1192 pages. In hardback. It took me about a month. I love long books.


Stepheny Ben wrote: "You think this is a brick? The longest thing I've ever read is 1192 pages. In hardback. It took me about a month. I love long books."

I love long books too. Stephen King's It was one of my favorites. I also love GRRM's song of ice and fire books. I'm not sure where you're going with your comment..?


Deborah 3/4s of the book great, so well written!!
But seriously when the sister comes to Haven and Bobbi had sprouted tentacles where her vagina should have been, at this point I wanted to throw my hardback across the room. It just started to get ridiculous from that point. I was thinking to myself, if I'd read this 20 years ago as a teenager would I have enjoyed it? Honestly I think I'd have laughed my ass off and definitely threw it off something. I will try another SK novel outside the Bill hodges trilogy but I certainly won't waste 5 days on another if there's a hint of nonsensical bogey men. My kids have written better storylines


Austin I rated it 4 stars myself. I really enjoyed most of this book. The thing about King is he tends to have some rather tedious and unnecessary gibberish sprinkled throughout every one of his books. This one probably had more than any that I can remember. That said King wins me over because I love the characters. This book for me also had a lot of great moments. it also feels different from most of his other works, which I count as a huge plus.

The one downfall for me is that you could have cut out nearly half the book and not really lost any of the story, including nearly the entirety of Book 2.


Alexandra Hmmmm well I just got the audiobook from OverDrive. Edward Hermann will be reading to me and I just love him so much from Gilmore Girls RIP Hermann :(. Tentacled vaginas??? I'm intrigued.


Alexsis Latoski Upon looking back on this book, Stephen King blatantly states he hates it and thinks it's an awful book. I am currently reading it, because I'm a King fan- but I put it off for years simply because of what he said about it.
I hope I don't regret it.


Stepheny Deborah wrote: "3/4s of the book great, so well written!!
But seriously when the sister comes to Haven and Bobbi had sprouted tentacles where her vagina should have been, at this point I wanted to throw my hardba..."


Exactly. I couldn't agree more, Deborah!! And reading it as a teenager it was only the ending that bothered me. hahaha


Stepheny Austin wrote: "I rated it 4 stars myself. I really enjoyed most of this book. The thing about King is he tends to have some rather tedious and unnecessary gibberish sprinkled throughout every one of his books. Th..."

I am a HUGE Stephen King fan, and know what you mean. This book just seemed overwhelming with the political jabs. I love most of his books though- this one just isn't for me :)


Stepheny Alexandra wrote: "Hmmmm well I just got the audiobook from OverDrive. Edward Hermann will be reading to me and I just love him so much from Gilmore Girls RIP Hermann :(. Tentacled vaginas??? I'm intrigued."

Hopefully your experience will be better than mine! LOL


Stepheny Alexsis wrote: "Upon looking back on this book, Stephen King blatantly states he hates it and thinks it's an awful book. I am currently reading it, because I'm a King fan- but I put it off for years simply because..."

Yeah, I've heard he said that before.... It isn't great but there are parts of it I do enjoy. It just could have been so much better!!


message 49: by Erik (new) - rated it 3 stars

Erik honestly, i dont know if ill ever reread this one. just didnt like it at all.


message 50: by Peetieeeee (new) - added it

Peetieeeee Lol! I Don't agree with this, because I loved this book from him but reading your review was great. Hahah It reminded me of Silver Linings Playbook when he throws the book out of the window. :P


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