Stephen King Books I Have Not Yet Read

Back in November, as part of his 6-city tour for Revival, Stephen King came to the Washington, D.C. area as a guest of the Politics & Prose bookstore. I wasn’t able to attend, but last night, I watched the talk on YouTube.

As often happens after I see Stephen King speak, I thought to myself, “Gee, I wish I was a writer!” It also makes me want to read more Stephen King. I have, over the last several months, been reading a good deal of nonfiction, although I did take a break in November to read Revival. But in the last two weeks or so, I’ve been so busy with other stuff that I haven’t had a chance to do much reading at all. This morning, I woke up with King’s talk still on my mind and decided that I’d start on something else of his today.

But what?

I went through the list of books I’ve read since 1996, looking for all instances of Stephen King. There were 66 of them (+ = e-book, @ = audiobook, * = recommended, ^ = re-read):

  1. Salem’s Lot by Stephen King (9/16/2001)
  2. Needful Things by Stephen King (9/25/2004)
  3. On Writing+ by Stephen King (9/16/2009)
  4. Carrie+ by Stephen King (9/21/2009)
  5. The Shining+ by Stephen King (9/28/2009)
  6. It+ by Stephen King (10/28/2009)
  7. Night Shift+ by Stephen King (11/3/2009)
  8. Under the Dome by Stephen King (11/30/2009)
  9. Different Seasons+ by Stephen King (12/9/2009)
  10. The Stand+ by Stephen King (6/2/2010)
  11. The Dead Zone+ by Stephen King (6/11/2010)
  12. Firestarter+ by Stephen King (6/25/2010)
  13. Pet Sematary by Stephen King (6/29/2010)
  14. Blockade Billy+ by Stephen King (6/9/2011)
  15. 11/22/63*+ by Stephen King (11/18/2011)
  16. The Green Mile+ by Stephen King (11/23/2011)
  17. Full Dark, No Stars+ by Stephen King (7/5/2012)
  18. Bag of Bones+ by Stephen King (7/10/2012)
  19. It*+^ by Stephen King (7/30/2012)
  20. 11/22/63*^+ by Stephen King (2/19/2013)
  21. Misery@ by Stephen King (2/23/2013)
  22. Gerald’s Game@ by Stephen King (3/3/2013)
  23. Hearts in Atlantis@* by Stephen King (3/8/2013)
  24. On Writing@^ by Stephen King (3/14/2013)
  25. Needful Things@^ by Stephen King (3/20/2013)
  26. ‘Salem’s Lot@^ by Stephen King (3/25/2013)
  27. From A Buick 8@ by Stephen King (3/29/2013)
  28. The Tommyknockers@ by Stephen King (4/6/2013)
  29. Dreamcatcher@ by Stephen King (4/13/2013)
  30. It@^ by Stephen King (5/2/2013)
  31. 11/22/63@^ by Stephen King (5/16/2013)
  32. The Shining@^ by Stephen King (5/21/2013)
  33. Danse Macabre@ by Stephen King (5/27/2013)
  34. Carrie@^ by Stephen King (5/29/2013)
  35. On Writing@^ by Stephen King (6/4/2013)
  36. Joyland@* by Stephen King (6/5/2013)
  37. The Dark Tower, Book 1: The Gunslinger@ by Stephen King (6/7/2013)
  38. The Dark Tower, Book 2: The Drawing of Three@ by Stephen King (6/12/2013)
  39. The Dark Tower, Book 3: The Wastelands@ by Stephen King (6/18/2013)
  40. Hard Listening+ by Stephen King, Scott Turow, Amy Tan, et. al. (6/24/2013)
  41. Dolores Claiborne@ by Stephen King (6/27/2013)
  42. The Dark Tower, Book 4: Wizard and Glass@* by Stephen King (7/10/2013)
  43. The Dark Tower, Book 5: Wolves of the Calla@ by Stephen King (7/26/2013)
  44. The Dark Tower, Book 6: Song of Susannah@ by Stephen King (7/30/2013)
  45. The Dark Tower, Book 7: The Dark Tower@ by Stephen King (8/7/2013)
  46. The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon@ by Stephen King (9/24/2013)
  47. Doctor Sleep@ by Stephen King (9/29/2013)
  48. On Writing@^* by Stephen King (10/31/2013)
  49. The Wind Through the Keyhole@* by Stephen King (11/5/2013)
  50. The Langoliers@ by Stephen King (11/15/2013)
  51. The Library Policeman@ by Stephen King (11/21/2013)
  52. The Sun Dog@ by Stephen King (11/27/2013)
  53. Nightmares & Dreamscapes, Volume 1@ by Stephen King (12/4/2013)
  54. Everything’s Eventual: 5 Dark Tales@ by Stephen King (12/26/2013)
  55. The Man in the Black Suit: 4 Dark Tales@ by Stephen King (12/27/2013)
  56. Christine@ by Stephen King (1/8/2014)
  57. The Shawshank Redemption@* by Stephen King (1/17/2014)
  58. The Body@* by Stephen King (1/24/2014)
  59. It@*^ by Stephen King (4/3/2014)
  60. From A Buick 8^*@ by Stephen King (4/18/2014)
  61. 11/22/63@^* by Stephen King (6/1/2014)
  62. Mile 81@ by Stephen King (6/2/2014)
  63. Mr. Mercedes@ by Stephen King (6/6/2014)
  64. Joyland@^ by Stephen King (6/9/2014)
  65. The Shawshank Redemption@*^ by Stephen King (6/29/2014)
  66. Revival@ by Stephen King (11/20/2014)

I then compared this to the list of books in Stephen King’s Library to see what I haven’t read. The list turns out to be an interesting one:

  1. Rage (as by Richard Bachman)
  2. The Long Walk (as by Richard Bachman)
  3. Roadwork (as by Richard Bachman)
  4. Cujo
  5. The Running Man (as by Richard Bachman)
  6. Cycle of the Werewolf
  7. The Talisman (w/Peter Straub)
  8. The Eyes of the Dragon
  9. Thinner (as by Richard Bachman)
  10. The Dark Half
  11. Insomnia
  12. Rose Madder
  13. Desperation
  14. The Regulators
  15. The Plant: Zenith Rising
  16. Black House
  17. The Colorado Kid
  18. Cell
  19. Lisey’s Story
  20. Blaze (as by Richard Bachman)
  21. Duma Key

I haven’t read any of the Bachman books yet. Perhaps the biggest standout on the list is Cujo. I’ve started it a couple of times, but have always ended up distracted by other things. I take it as a sign that I just can’t get into the book. King says his favorite book is Lisey’s Story, and I’ve managed to make it halfway through that one, but have given up. I was thinking about re-reading Hearts in Atlantis, which I thought was great the first time I read it, but I do want to give something a try that I haven’t read yet. So at this moment, I’m leaning toward Insomnia. I’ve stayed away from that book mainly because King himself has said it was overly plotted. But it can’t hurt to give it a try and see for myself.

I’m still undecided, but I’ll let you know what I choose. If there are any books on this list that you feel are a MUST READ, let me know in the comments.

9 thoughts on “Stephen King Books I Have Not Yet Read

  1. I liked Cell quite a bit, although I’m pretty partial toward stories of ethe apocalypse.

    It’s not as good as The Stand, but it’s different enough and pretty good in its own right.

  2. Eyes of the Dragon – will fill in a little backstory for Roland. Sort of. It’s as close to a straight up fantasy story as I’ve seen from King.

    I read the Colorado Kid last year – it wasn’t what I was expecting. Like Eyes, it’s relatively short, so you could probably knock both of these out in a few days. I think I said this in my review, but worth repeating – Colorado Kid is less about solving the mystery, and more about the sense of mystery.

  3. On your “to read” list, Jamie, Desperation is better than Cujo.
    On the other, I would also like to have your comment on “what film based on Stephe’s books is the closest to the book ?”
    For me, in descending order of closeness:
    It
    Carrie
    The Mist *forget in your list*
    The Shining

    Phil

  4. Phil, “The Mist” is a novella that was included in one of the collections that I did read, which is why I didn’t include it on the list of stuff I haven’t read. I’ve been wanting to read Desperation, so your recommendation help.s

    As for your question about movies, I hate to disappoint, but I’m not much of a movie guy. That gene withered in me a while ago. I realize it is shocking, but I haven’t seen the movie version of any of the movies you listed. 🙁

  5. You may want to pass on Insomnia. It was one of his long books that I found to be a total grind versus his other long books – like 11/22/63 or The Stand – that I loved and flew through. I know what you mean about Lisey’s Story. I finished it, but it was a chore. I mean, just the number of times he has the husband say “It’s a blood bool!” (yes, yes, yes, we get it, it’s a blood bool, we know!?!?) almost made me stop.

    You can never go wrong with Hearts in Atlantis (which we found out later was tied to the Dark Tower), but the one on your list which is one of my all time favorites (not just by King, but all books) is The Talisman. I think I have read it about 10 times since it first came out. I’m about due to read it again. I can only go so long before I need to travel back to The Territories with Jack.

  6. Thank, Tom. I don’t know if you saw the full video I posted but in the Q&A section of the talk, King is asked about the Talisman series. He said that the day before the talk, he’d met up with Peter Straub, and they discussed the third book in the series, and that MAYBE they would write it “next year” (which would be this year, since the talk was in November.)

  7. If you liked the Dark Tower, I would really recommend reading The Talisman followed by the Black House next… that and you can’t go wrong with the Bachman Books, The Long Walk and The Running Man were probably my favorites there.

  8. I enjoyed reading the Bachman Books…but that said, it was 25 years or more ago, and my mother didn’t want me to read Stephen King for some reason so I got around that rule because she didn’t know that Richard Bachman was a pseudonym. As such, my memories could be clouded a bit.

  9. Insomnia contains huge swaths of material related to the Dark Tower series.
    Cell contains a lot of cheesy dialog.
    The Tommyknockers was written when Stephen King was high on coke.
    Rage was the book that got a lot of public schools to ban anything written by Stephen King.
    He has said that the book would go out of print.

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