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The Body

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In 1960s America, four young boys go on a journey to search for the body of a boy killed by a train. As they travel, they discover how cruel the world can be, but also how wondrous.

200 pages, Paperback

First published August 27, 1982

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About the author

Stephen King

2,528 books828k followers
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, Maine, for good. Her parents, Guy and Nellie Pillsbury, had become incapacitated with old age, and Ruth King was persuaded by her sisters to take over the physical care of them. Other family members provided a small house in Durham and financial support. After Stephen's grandparents passed away, Mrs. King found work in the kitchens of Pineland, a nearby residential facility for the mentally challenged.

Stephen attended the grammar school in Durham and Lisbon Falls High School, graduating in 1966. From his sophomore year at the University of Maine at Orono, he wrote a weekly column for the school newspaper, THE MAINE CAMPUS. He was also active in student politics, serving as a member of the Student Senate. He came to support the anti-war movement on the Orono campus, arriving at his stance from a conservative view that the war in Vietnam was unconstitutional. He graduated in 1970, with a B.A. in English and qualified to teach on the high school level. A draft board examination immediately post-graduation found him 4-F on grounds of high blood pressure, limited vision, flat feet, and punctured eardrums.

He met Tabitha Spruce in the stacks of the Fogler Library at the University, where they both worked as students; they married in January of 1971. As Stephen was unable to find placement as a teacher immediately, the Kings lived on his earnings as a laborer at an industrial laundry, and her student loan and savings, with an occasional boost from a short story sale to men's magazines.

Stephen made his first professional short story sale ("The Glass Floor") to Startling Mystery Stories in 1967. Throughout the early years of his marriage, he continued to sell stories to men's magazines. Many were gathered into the Night Shift collection or appeared in other anthologies.

In the fall of 1971, Stephen began teaching English at Hampden Academy, the public high school in Hampden, Maine. Writing in the evenings and on the weekends, he continued to produce short stories and to work on novels.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,762 reviews
Profile Image for oyshik.
219 reviews692 followers
July 15, 2021
The Body by Stephen King
Such a wonderful story that we can relate to the characters' lives and their interaction with each other. Stephen King did a wonderful job of writing this book about characters in a way that made them seem completely genuine and authentic. The emotions that the author evoked were deep and the ending will have you pondering for a certain long time.
Love isn’t soft, like those poets say. Love has teeth which bite and the wounds never close.

Charming book.
Profile Image for Nataliya.
782 reviews12.4k followers
April 26, 2023
For all of those who keep insisting that Stephen King is a literary equivalent of Big Mac and fries, writing in the comfortable confines of the frequently-despised 'genre' - please take a look at The Body: The Fall from Innocence, which is much more familiar to public in the quite faithful adaptation by Rob Reiner - 'Stand by Me'.

It's not King's trademark horror; it is actually free of the constraints of any so-called 'genre'. It is a coming-of-age character-study novella set in 1960 Maine where monsters are not hiding behind bushes but instead live in the hearts of people - the setting and themes at which King excels.

This is a story of four boys on the brink of adolescence; the last moments of childhood told with occasional almost Bradbury-esque nostalgia but with the rose-tinted glasses mercilessly torn off. The blue-collar childhood in a small Maine town in 1960 is not a place of magic and wonder - these boys are no strangers to abandonment and abuse and prejudice.

Hot-tempered and volatile Teddy Duchamp has been physically mutilated by his mentally ill father whom he still worships. Childish and not-too-bright Vern Tessio lives in fear of his brother. Gordie Lachance, whose adult writer self is telling us this story, is little but a stranger to his parents who never got over the death of his older brother. Smart and tough Chris Chambers, a kid from a family that supplies Castle Rock with alcoholics and juvenile delinquents, is being seriously abused by his father and is seen as a worthless and even dangerous person because of his family.
"Chris didn't talk much about his dad, but we all knew he hated him like poison. Chris was marked up every two weeks or so, bruises on his cheeks and neck or one eye swelled up and as colorful as a sunset, and once he came to school with a big clumsy bandage on the back of his head. Other times he never got to school at all. His mom would call him in sick because he was too lamed up to come in. Chris was smart, really smart, but he played truant a lot, and Mr. Halliburton, the town truant officer, was always showing up at Chris's house, driving his old black Chevrolet with the NO RIDERS sticker in the corner of the windshield. If Chris was being truant and Bertie (as we called him - always behind his back, of course) caught him, he would haul him back to school and see that Chris got detention for a week. But if Bertie found out that Chris was home because his father had beaten the shit out of him, Bertie just went away and didn't say boo to a cuckoo bird. It never occurred to me to question this set of priorities until about twenty years later."
But childhood, even though not at all sheltered, still gives them something of a shield against the world - that sense of invulnerability that only the young children have, the love for adventure, and the protection of sincere and lighthearted friendship.
"Everything was there and around us. We knew exactly who we were and exactly where we were going. It was grand."

But we meet them right at the time when they are about to leave the protection of childhood behind them, when in the miserably hot summer of 1960 they set out on a trip to find a body of a boy who disappeared in the woods - a trip that makes at least two of them go through quite significant emotional turmoil and reevaluate their priorities and see the strengthening of one friendship while the others fall apart as the realization sets in that there is more to friendship than just fun and leisure. This is a trip that uncovers both the steel and the vulnerability in the characters of Chris and Gordie, and shoves them from the haven of childhood into the world where things take work and sacrifice and pain, the world that is often cruel and cynical and unavoidable.
"But he said: "Your friends drag you down, Gordie. Don't you know that? [...] Your friends do. They're like drowning guys that are holding onto your legs. You can't save them. You can only drown with them."

This is a scary realization when you are young - that your friends are not good for you. I remember getting that feeling at around twelve, the age the boys in this book are, and I remember how unsettling that realization was. At that time it feels like friendships are forever, and that things that connect you to other people are there to stay - and realizing how easy and even necessary it can be to break those bonds is quite unsettling.
"You always know the truth, because when you cut yourself or someone else with it, there's always a bloody show."

And some of this is present here - but on the other hand we are also treated to the strengthening of the true friendship between Gordie and Chris. Gordie, a kid who is emotionally neglected by his family, acutely feels the sincerity and kindness that Chris brings into the world, despite his 'tough' origins - Chris, the center of this ragtag group, is grown up beyond his years, and has some hard-earned wisdom for his twelve years of age, sprinkled with a bit of pain and bitterness but grounded in common sense.
"But it was only survival. We were clinging to each other in deep water. I've explained about Chris, I think; my reasons for clinging to him were less definable. His desire to get away from Castle Rock and out of the mill's shadow seemed to me to be my best part, and I could not just leave him to sink or swim on his own. If he had drowned, that part of me would have drowned with him, I think."
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I love the narrative voice of this story - the narration by a young but accomplished writer Gordon Lachance, bringing the perspective that the few decades that have passed since that summer of 1960 have given him - but yet conveying the feelings and the attitudes of a twelve-year-old boy who feels both resentment and love and experiences profound beauty and the low of human ugliness. There are lyrical parts and trademark-King unflinching gory parts, and social commentary without the slightest sugar-coating. The story is peppered in places with the stories written by older Gordon and full of reflections of the adult man reflecting on the important and defining experience of the end of his childhood.
"The most important things are hardest to say, because words diminish them."
It is a fascinating, engrossing read, the one that is well worth several hours of your time, even if you have never been a fan of King.

5 stars.

Apparently my original review defaults to something attributed to “Robin Waterfield” instead of Stephen King. 🤷‍♀️ So reposting it here as apparently something weird happened between 2012 when it was written and now.

Also posted on my blog.
Profile Image for Matt.
3,816 reviews12.8k followers
December 1, 2018
Stephen King’s wonderful 1982 novella, which was transformed into the classic 1986 film, Stand By Me, four young boys to come of age over a weekend together. Set in 1960, the story takes place in the small town of Castle Rock, Maine, where twelve-year-old Gordie Lachance and his three friends are ready to set out to substantiate the rumours that the body of a missing boy has turned up near the next town. As the boys to begin their summer trek, they must come together to face winding train tracks, a brief dip in an interesting water hole, and a great deal of self-discovery. In a story that seeks to explore the innermost thoughts and feelings of these four, the reader can see that emotions run deep and that the ‘tough guy’ exteriors are only a pre-teen facade. King pulls the reader in from the outset in this well-paced piece, which shows just how amazing youth can be, when tempered with a little sobering maturity. Recommended for those who like King and his various writing styles. No need to be wary, for there is little gore, but enough language that some readers may want to look elsewhere.

I always enjoy Stephen King pieces, as they keep me wondering where things will go in his circuitous writing style. There was a strict ban on my reading his novels when I was younger, for reasons I am not entirely sure I remember. My adult years have been spent catching up and I have come to see that King can be a little intense, but he has a great deal I thoroughly enjoy. King offers up a lighter novella here, allowing his characters to develop nicely without the excessive gore. Gordie Lachance is both the presumptive protagonist and the ‘author’ of this story, a flashback piece penned when he was much older. Lachance explores some of the sentiments of his own childhood, as well as honing his skills as a writer. Gordie offers up much development as it relates to his friends, giving the reader a more comprehensive approach to those who populate the story. Through a series of events that weave together into the larger story, King allows his characters to mature through their learning experiences. Keeping the reader engaged throughout this quick read, King shows just how strong his writing can be, close to four decades later.

Kudos, Mr. King, for another wonderful piece of writing. I am happy to have stumbled upon this one and will admit that I have not seen Stand By Me in its entirety, which will soon change.

Like/hate the review? An ever-growing collection of others appears at:

A Book for All Seasons, a different sort of Book Challenge: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/...
Profile Image for Kelly (and the Book Boar).
2,479 reviews7,773 followers
December 22, 2017
Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/

The premise is simple:

“Do you guys wanna go see a dead body?”

The end product is quite possibly the best coming-of-age story ever written. This is what the saying “boys will be boys” is about. It’s about going on an adventure, and saying swear words when out of your parents’ earshot, and trying a cigarette just so you can say you did, and standing up to bullies, and most of all it’s about friendship. Because really?

“I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, did you?”

I decided to give this one a listen after forcing it on my oldest son in order to make sure he’s actually reading when he says he is. There’s a good chance he’ll choose to be contrary simply to hurt my feelings since even the most decent teenager is still pretty horrible. The good news is I was able to pull a double-whammy and make the youngest listen too on the way to and from his baseball tournament this weekend. He arrived a little late to the party when Gordy and the boys were getting ready to meet Milo Pressman and the notorious “Chopper” and was on the edge of his seat during the train dodge. He completely blew me away when he complained as I hit strategically hit pause at a certain point in the story so we could hear it in full the next morning. And what a morning we had! A total barf-o-rama full of cackling and full-blown guffaws.

An obvious must for any Constant Reader and, as far as I’m concerned, anyone else as well. Truly an actual contender when it comes to the “like this or we can’t be friends” option. It’s that good. And the movie is one of the best book-to-screen translations in the history of filmmaking. Perfection.

Endnote: This was my third audio book and I finally found a winner. Frank Muller’s voice was just like butter. The only thing that could have been better is if it would have been Richard Dreyfus doing the narrating : )
Profile Image for ☆LaurA☆.
247 reviews74 followers
June 2, 2023

FAN TA STI CO !!!!!!
No davvero, poi aver visto il film subito dopo aver letto la storia di Gordie e dei suoi amici....
Non essendo una "da film", chi un po' ormai mi conosce lo sa, dopo circa un nano secondo pensavo di  addormentarmi e invece...Stand by me ha risvegliato in me qualcosa, si può essere emozionati per questa cosa? Mi sento stranissima, sarà  che mi ha riportato ai miei di 12 anni, alla mia  adolescenza, a tutti quegli amici che ora sono un piacevole ricordo, ma che in quegli anni erano la tua famiglia. Ripensare a quante cazzate abbiamo fatto insieme, a quanti meravigliosi ricordi mi porto nel cuore e a quanti invece ho ceduto al tempo...già perché non ricordo tutto di quell'età, ma ricordo che stavamo bene, niente e nessuno avrebbe potuto separarci e alla fine ci siamo persi lo stesso.
Gli amici entrano ed escono nella nostra vita come camerieri in una sala di ristorante, lo avete mai notato?
Non importa quanto siano importanti gli avvenimenti che condividi con alcune persone, alla fine quel che resta è, per la maggior parte delle volte, un piacevole ricordo che tirerai fuori all'occorrenza. Come il cerbiatto sui binari che ti guarda. Sai che se dirai qualcosa scapperà e allora stai in silenzio perché la parola è danno. L’amore non è quello che quei poeti del cazzo come McKuen vogliono farvi credere. L’amore ha i denti; i denti mordono; i morsi non guariscono mai. Nessuna parola, nessuna combinazione di parole, può chiudere quelle ferite d’amore.
Non ho mai più avuto amici, in seguito, come quelli che avevo a dodici anni. Gesù, e voi?

Ed ora.....Paracadutisti fuori!
Buttiamoci in un'altra avventura, seppur scritta, ma che sarà in grado di farmi "vivere".
Profile Image for Brett C.
805 reviews181 followers
May 16, 2021
I really enjoyed this story. I've read other Stephen King short stories and I must confess: he has a way with words and storytelling. Sometimes human emotion is diluted by words and loses its effect. Stephen King however, delivers every time.

The story was the inspiration for the 1987 film 'Stand By Me'. The story is a first-person narrative by the main character, Gordon LaChance. He is telling the story many years later as an adult. He reflects about himself and his three best friends during the summer of 1960. The four 12-year-olds are going on a journey to see a dead body. During their journey they experience the full spectrum of human emotion and come out of the journey a little different, a little more mature.

The readability and realism kept me engaged the entire time. I would highly recommend this alongside "Shawshank Redemption" because of the human element layered in the story. Stephen King is a great writer all around: horror and drama. Thanks!
Profile Image for Erin .
1,275 reviews1,198 followers
July 12, 2019
4.5 Stars

I LOVE the movie Stand By Me.

I don't know if its because its a great film(it is). Or if it's because I watched it around the same time, I watched movies like The Sandlot and My Girl. So in my mind I just equate them with summers in my childhood.

I haven't watched Stand By Me in probably over 15years, it was probably around the same time I read this book for the first time. I remember not really liking the book back then. I think it was the combination of it being a non-horror Stephen King book and/or because I loved the movie so much.

This time around I loved this book the only thing stopping it from being a 5 star read is that its in my opinion too short. I want more. As an adult I read this book in a completely different way and I'm sure that I would view the movie differently now as well.

The Body is about 4 friends who decide to go on a weekend "adventure" to find the rumored body of a kid who was hit by a train.

It's Stephen King so know its gonna be a darker read but despite that morbid premise The Body is a story of friendships. The boys are around 12 years old and they've been inseparable for years but they can feel themselves growing apart. High School tends to do that. When I was a kid I hung out with about 6 girls and we just knew we would be friends forever but by sophomore year I was only still friends with 3 and as an adult I'm only friends with 1.

Times change. In high school I found my tribe but I still have fond memories of my preteen "girl gang", even if I'm no longer friends with them.

The Body is the perfect gateway drug to start reading Stephen King. Its not scary, its not gory(maybe a little bit gory), and it has a lot of heart.
Profile Image for Dennis.
658 reviews276 followers
January 30, 2021

I think King is at his best when he writes kids. Or more precisely when he writes about growing up. About leaving behind the innocent and carefree times of youth. I think that’s what first made me fall in love with his writing.

Not that these kids had a particularly carefree youth. No, there are some struggles. But, you know, life is getting harder as you get older. Before it gets easier again. But nothing will ever be quite the same way as it had been when you were twelve years old and had all your life in front of you.

This is the well-known story of four kids going on a hike to find the dead body of a boy somewhere along a railway track. What they are really going to find is themselves, though.

King wonderfully captures that sense of freedom and adventure, of wonder and boundless imagination. That time when everything seemed so much bigger, but also so much less complicated. Before at some point there’s this inevitable shift that you can sense just before it is about to happen. And then you can never go back. But sometimes, for a short moment, you feel like you almost could.

There’s little horror in this story. But fear does play a role. Both the absence of fear in situations your adult self might shy away from instinctively, but also the presence of it in moments where it wouldn’t even be taken into consideration by your rational grown-up mind. The moments in which only a child will feel afraid, because only a child has the imagination for it.

And then there is the very real fear that while you’re just about to go on your long journey and your life is lying in front of you, fresh and ready to be explored, a web of roads that may lead you anywhere, a succession of crossroads that present you with endless possibilities, that you might take a wrong turn somewhere and end up in a cul-de-sac. That fear of getting it wrong.

But mostly this is a story about friendships, and how they won’t last forever. At least most of them don’t. And maybe that’s for the better. Because you have to become your own person. You have to change and grow and experience new things and meet new people. You have to live your life.

But cherish the memories. Think back to those big adventures that you had when you were just a kid. Don’t forget your friends. You’ve been an important part of their lives as well.


I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, did you?

5 stars

Up next in my quest to read all the stories in the Castle Rock Cycle: Well, my list says Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption. But I've already read that one and don't quite see the connection. So I guess it will be Uncle Otto's Truck.
Profile Image for Sushi (寿司).
610 reviews132 followers
October 10, 2019
Bellissimo ma non fa paura. Forse se l'avessi letto negli 80s mi sarei potuta spaventare ma non nel 2019.
Il sottotitolo in alto alla copertina con scritto "da leggere con la luce accesa" potevano evitarlo.
Comunque ho apprezzato davvero questa idea dei quattro ragazzini amici che partono per questa avventura nei boschi, attraversando la ferrovia, per vedere il cadavere di un loro coetaneo.

Ho provato a cercare anche il film di The Body/Stand by Me su youtube ma niente. Solo pezzettini. Ora mi piacerebbe vederlo.
Profile Image for Jason Koivu.
Author 7 books1,255 followers
June 6, 2020
The Body may not be perfect, but it was for me. I grew up around kids like this. The story resonates with me.
Profile Image for Karla.
1,074 reviews243 followers
June 20, 2022
Story & audio 4 stars**
Narrator frank Muller
Profile Image for Eirini Proikaki.
339 reviews113 followers
February 23, 2017
Αγαπητέ Στήβεν,
Ξέρω οτι σε έχω κατηγορήσει πολλές φορές για την ατελείωτη φλυαρία σου αλλά αυτή τη φορά δεν θα πω τίποτα.Οχι επειδή δεν φλυαρείς και σε αυτό το βιβλίο αλλά γιατί με συγκίνησες και αγάπησα και την φλυαρία σου.Με έκανες να νιώσω την αποπνικτική ζέστη,να ακούσω τα κουνούπια να ζουζουνίζουν στα αυτιά μου,να νιώσω τις ράγες του τρένου να δονούνται,να δω τα σύννεφα της καταιγίδας να μαζεύονται πάνω απο το κεφάλι μου και ,πάνω απ'ολα, με έκανες να συμπάσχω και να συμπονέσω αυτά τα παιδιά που μεγάλωναν σε τέτοιες συνθήκες,σε δυσλειτουργικές οικογένειες και σε μια κοινωνία που δεν ήταν ιδιαίτερα διατεθειμένη να τα βοηθήσει.
Να,αυτά μου κάνεις και συνεχιζω να σε διαβαζω κι ας πονοκεφαλιάζω ώρες ώρες.
Profile Image for Dylan.
439 reviews94 followers
July 29, 2020
A Disappointing Read.

Synopsis: Four boys hear about the location of a dead body in a forest that 40 miles away. Wanting to do something 'big' they decide to hike their way over there to find the body and lead the police to it, partially in the hopes of a little bit of fame. The novella also deals with the low prospects the kids face from growing up in a small factory town.

Thoughts: By far and away my biggest issue with this novella was that I didn't care for the characters. Part of this is that the novella feels a lot like a precursor to IT, and Gordon in particular feels like he's just a slight variation of Big Bill. I did feel pity for Chris and Teddy, though I couldn't tell you a single thing about Vern. The fact that it seemed so much like IT also effected my enjoyment of it, there were a lot of similarities here.

Another issue I had with this is that it's supposed to deal with the low prospects of the kids but other than the last couple of chapters that sum up what happened to them later in life, there's really only one section that really deals with that concept. I was expecting it to be a bigger theme throughout so I was a bit surprised/disappointed by this.

One of the most bizarre features of this novella was that it contains two short stories written by an older version of the protagonist and both were fairly unpleasant and seemingly unnecessary. The first is one part erotica, one part family drama. This one at least seemed to mirror some of the lives of the boys so I could kind of understand its inclusion, but the erotica part of it was still pretty unpleasant. The second one is about a pie eating contest that devolves into literally everyone throwing up. It was unpleasant to read and was seemingly irrelevant to the overall plot, it kind of felt like a riff on Carrie.

The journey itself was quite compelling, but it kind of just boiled down to three or four interesting events split up by weird dreams, the short stories, or conversations between the characters so it didn't really feel like a cohesive narrative to me.
Profile Image for Sarah.
687 reviews159 followers
July 8, 2018
This was okay. I listened to it on audio, narrated by Frank Muller. I think this was my first time listening to him as a narrator, and I thought he was great.

The story itself was nothing special. It was very classic Stephen King, a coming of age story for four boys in Castle Rock, Maine. I was reminded a lot of IT- not because anything in the book was all that scary, but just because the boys seemed like they were doing a lot of the same things. (Walking train tracks through the woods, battling bullies, swimming, etc.) One of them is even a writer- which I believe one of the kids in IT grows up to be?

The whole thing was so similar it just struck me as odd. Sure, King reuses a lot of the same themes, (set in Maine, writers, coming of age, kids as heroes, bullies, etc.) but nothing I've ever read from him made me go- gee, haven't I heard this story before? It just seemed lazy to me.

The highlight, for me, was the stories we're given from the writer, Gordie. He has one about a man named Chico, that's autobiographical for him in a way, and I really enjoyed it. In the end, I'm not really sure what the point of The Body was. Kids go on a walk to find a body. That's pretty much it. Maybe I just couldn't relate.

I know this was originally part of a collection, so I wouldn't rule the entire collection out- I just wouldn't bother re-reading this one.
Profile Image for Zero (semi-hiatus).
491 reviews24 followers
October 7, 2022
Gordon and his friends, Chris, Vern, and Teddy, are 12 years old in the 1950s. Summer is almost over and they're hanging out in their tree house. Earlier, Vern accidently overheard his older brother talking with a friend. They were joyriding the previous day and found the body of a missing kid next to the train tracks. The older kids decided not to report it because they didn't want to get in trouble for their own mischief. When Vern tells Gordon, Chris, and Teddy about what he heard, they decide to find the body themselves, so they can report it and get their names in the paper.

This novella has the combination of eloquence and coarseness that I associate with Stephen King. A lot of it is sad (the missing kid who died, the descriptions of the kids' home lives, Gordon's thoughts about death). There is some rough language, which should probably be expected from 12 year olds at any time in history.
Profile Image for zulaima..
151 reviews42 followers
September 2, 2023

Most people have probably seen - or at least heard of - the movie Stand By Me; the heartwarming and surprisingly faithful adaptation of Stephen King's short story The Body.

I'm not even embarrassed to admit that I've rewatched Rob Reiner's version multiple times (I kind of lost count at this point) and that my heart aches terribly every time I see Chris and Gordie interact (come on, they're Byler in a different universe, ofc I love them).

Reiner did, after all, direct another one of my favorite 80s films (*cough cough* The Princess Bride) and is, according to Stephen King, the best choice to adapt his novels (we all know he hates Kubrick and doesn’t care for any of the tv shows inspired by his work).

So, obviously after reading Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption and realizing that it was just as good as the movie, I was pretty excited for The Body as well.

I skipped the other two short stories (Apt Pupil and The Breathing Method) in this collection, for I don't have the desire to read about a boy desperately wanting to become a Nazi and a pregnant lady… having to breathe(?)

I'm not sure, I might pick them up eventually, but I mainly came here for the two most famous and beloved ones. Also, I gotta say; I haven't resonated with a book quote like the one below this deeply in a long time.

The most important things are the hardest things to say. They are things you get ashamed of because words make them smaller. When they were in your head they were limitless, but when they come out they seem to be no bigger than normal things. But that's not all. The most important things lie too close to wherever your secret heart is buried; they are clues that could guide your enemies to a prize they would love to steal. It's hard and painful for you to talk about these things ... and then people just look at you strangely. They haven't understood what you've said at all, or why you almost cried while you were saying it.

Sadly, I didn't cherish The Body as much as its gut-wrenching predecessor, but I still loved it very much. Even though there were parts - especially Gordie's storytelling intermissions - where I found myself bored or asking what the point of it was exactly.

Overall, however, it was a great experience, and I ended up crying over the perfection of Gordie's and Chris' relationship and Chris' character in general.

Obviously, it reminded me a lot of It as well as Stranger Things, at least when it came to Gordie and Chris (as I said... Mike and Will in a different font) as well as the whole rite de passage background.

But mostly due to King's depiction of the boys' dynamic. One seriously cannot deny that Stephen King knows how to write friendships; he might not always be a genius when it comes to romance, but friendships, that is some goooood shit.

Furthermore, The Body reminded me of a test run for It in terms of depicting physical and psychological violence against children.

Of course, Castle Rock's citizens aren’t as abusive or extreme as Derry's (you know… cause there’s no out-of-space monster living in the sewers feeding and reinforcing the town's violent and hostile tendencies), but they still wouldn't win a parent of the year medal.

Chris had it worst (like Beverly), but Gordie's fate felt similar to Bill's - mainly because his parents weren't capable of taking care of him after the loss of another child. Does my comparison mean that Gordie and Chris (and by extension Mike and Will) are supposed to be lovers? Well, that’s up for debate, I guess.

Even if I'd known the right thing to say, I probably couldn't have said it. Speech destroys the function of love, I think - that's a hell of a thing for a writer to say, I guess, but I believe it to be true. The word is the harm. Love has teeth; they bite; the wounds never close. No word, no combination of words, can close those lovebites.
Profile Image for Gianfranco Mancini.
2,209 reviews790 followers
February 15, 2019

King al suo meglio in uno struggente e malinconico racconto sulla fine dell'infanzia, così diverso dalle solite storie agghiaccianti marchio di fabbrica del Re del Terrore, ma neanche tanto: l'incontro con le sanguisughe, la vendetta di Culo di Lardo ed il trattamento riservato al figlio dal padre del povero Teddy Duchamp sono tra le più disturbanti scene mai scritte dall'autore secondo me.

Ed ora toccherà rivedermi per l'ennesima volta il film.
Profile Image for Rachel Bea.
358 reviews115 followers
February 7, 2017
this was like a 2.5/3 for me. Sorry if you're really into it, lol. It had some really nice moments but otherwise I was kinda meh about it. Maybe if I had read a physical copy I would have had more of an emotional response to it.
Profile Image for J.C..
Author 3 books68 followers
March 8, 2011
I feel like I just watched an audio-only version of the film "Stand By Me". Which makes sense as this was the original story that inspired the movie. And its surprising how much the movie not only followed the original story, but captured much of its spirit. Certainly the King version is much more vulgar and up front, but the wonder of youth and the harsh reality of time is there, in the film.

I've always wanted to read this. I've always been a huge fan of the film and was always curious as to King's take on it. Much of King's material goes back to a group of kids, a pack, going through some kind of bizarre adventure. One only has to look at "It" and "Dreamcatcher" to see this. Both are very strong tales, some say his best (I've only read Dreamcatcher, FYI), and that is the same case here.

The one thing I will say that seperates the tale from the film is the ending. It's much broader here, more real and more heart breaking. I wont spoil it beyond that point. But, even though I hate to see things turn out in such a fashion for those characters, it makes sense to me. I think it's logical given the theme of the story and I don't think it's harsh or cruel or out of context.

If you enjoyed the movie or enjoy King's work this is another that I highly recommend.
Profile Image for Kyle Erickson.
416 reviews208 followers
August 6, 2022
"I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, do you?"

This novella is a brilliant coming of age tale. I'm annoyed I waited so long to read it.
Profile Image for Cody | CodysBookshelf.
739 reviews229 followers
June 23, 2021
Re-read! Though I hadn’t read this in 6, 7 years, the story has remained so fresh in my mind—partly due to the classic film adaptation, and partly because this is simply Stephen King at his very best, showing off all his skills. Can ya believe this was written when he was still a new author, with only two published books to his name? By far his most rewarding and mature work to that point (sorry, ’Salem’s Lot fans …), The Body is timeless.

Some of King’s best works are set in the summertime, ever notice? Joyland, The Green Mile, It, The Tommyknockers, Cujo. Maybe even the Mercedes trilogy? Can’t remember. The Body is special, though, because it is so of summer, and what it means to kids: King’s kid characters here are spot-on, and he inhabits the spirit of childhood a’la Ray Bradbury. King has always been talented at writing kids, sure, but he’s usually at his best when writing Boomer kids, and why not? It’s his age. It’s what he knows best.

Why bother going over the plot? You all know it. What is deceptively simple King wrangles into magic: a simple journey to see a dead body is transformed into one of the most powerful coming of age stories ever told, one against which the sub-genre is still measured. And rightfully so.

We’re entering the depths of summer now, and I recommend giving this a look if it’s been a while since your last read. It’s perfect for the season.
Profile Image for Amin Matin.
297 reviews51 followers
March 4, 2022
The most important things are the hardest things to say.

یکی از چهار ناولای کتاب Different Seasons که بدون شک جزو بهترین داستان‌هایی بود که تا به اینجا از کینگ خوندم.

داستان در شهر کسل‌راک مین اتفاق می‌افته و از جایی شروع میشه که ری براور پسری از شهر کناری به صورت مرموزی گم میشه و همزمان گوردی لچنس و سه تا رفیقش به صورت اتفاقی رازی رو در مورد پسری که با قطار تصادف کرده می‌فهمند و تصمیم می‌گیرند که برای پیدا کردن جسد این پسر مرموز به سمت ماجراجویی خطرناک و البته هیجان‌انگیزی برند.

احتمالاً این کتاب به لطف اقتباس معروفی که از این عنوان با اسم Stand by me نوشته شده از شناخته‌شده ترین کارهایی باشه که کینگ تا حالا نوشته.

حالا نظر من در مورد این کتاب و اینکه چرا پنج دادم، بدون شک The body یکی از بهترین داستان‌های Coming of ageهست که تا حالا نوشته شده، شاید خیلی از مردم از دور استیون کینگ رو با کتاب‌های وحشتی که نوشته بشناسن اما به نظر من رسالت کینگ نوشتن داستان‌های Coming of ageه، کاری که کینگ توی ۱۹۴ صفحه این کتاب انجام داده خیلی‌ از نویسنده‌ها در هزاران صفحه هم نمی‌تونند انجام بدن.

نکته دیگه راجع به کتاب که شاید شما رو به خوندن the body مشتاق کنه نثر زیبایی هست که داره، برخلاف اکثر اوقات که کینگ بیشتر تمرکزشو روی پلات و شخصیت‌‌پردازی می‌ذاره اینجا کاملاً قدرت قلمش هم نشون میده.

این نکته هم احتمالاً صد بار قبلاً بهش اشاره کردم، وقتی صحبت از نوشتن شخصیت‌های کودک و نوجوان میشه کینگ با اختلاف بهترینه

پیشنهاد می‌کنم حتماً این کتابو بخونید، خیلی چیزها بهتون یاد می‌ده

ممنون که خوندید.
Profile Image for Νίκος Vitoliotis).
Author 4 books46 followers
May 17, 2023
Παρέμενε αδιάβαστο στη βιβλιοθήκη μου για 25 (!) χρόνια, αγορασμένο για 1.500 δραχμές. Ο μόνος λόγος ήταν πως είχα ήδη δει την ταινία 7-8 φορές, όμως όταν το βρήκα μπροστά μου σε ένα στοκατζίδικο, δεν μπόρεσα να μην το πάρω.
Ναι, ο Κινγκ δεν γράφει μόνο τρόμο, ξέρει να μιλά το ίδιο καλά με λυρισμό για θέματα διαχρονικά. Η μεγάλη περιπέτεια 4 προεφήβων στην Αμερική του 1960, όπως την περιγράφει σε αυτή τη νουβέλα, χτυπά μια ευαίσθητη χορδή, φέρνει πάνω αναμνήσεις καταδικές μας, με παρέες και φίλους, εκεί κάπου στα δώδεκα, λίγο πριν μπούμε στην εφηβεία, ανακαλύψουμε τα κορίτσια και αφήσουμε για πάντα πίσω μας το παιχνίδι με τα χαρτάκια με ποδοσφαιριστές, τα κόμικς, την αθώα, την αφελή ενατένιση του μέλλοντος.
"Να αφήσουμε για πάντα πίσω..."; Ή μήπως όχι; Μήπως αυτός ο δωδεκαχρονος προέφηβος μένει για πάντα μέσα μας, παγιδευμένος σ' ένα γερασμένο κορμί; Και μήπως όταν φύγουμε από τούτον τον κόσμο γυρίσουμε εκεί, με τους φίλους μας, για να ανταλλάξουμε και πάλι χαρτάκια, να βολτάρουμε με τα ποδήλατα μέχρι να βραδιάσει, να μιλήσουμε ώρες ατελείωτες για πράγματα σημαντικά, πολύ σημαντικά για να τα καταλάβει ένας μεγάλος;

ΥΓ: η κινηματογραφική μεταφορά είναι πολύ καλή, το φιλμ είναι ένα από τα καλύτερα που έχω δει.
Profile Image for Φίλιππος ²³.
324 reviews35 followers
July 6, 2020
Έχω δηλώσει πολλές φορές ότι ο Κινγκ μου ταιριάζει περισσότερο στα "μη τρόμου" βιβλία του, και έρχεται να το επιβεβαιώσει και με αυτό το βιβλίο.

Η αγαπημένη φλυαρία του Κινγκ είναι πάλι εδώ...σε βάζει μέσα στο βιβλίο και σε κάνει να νιώθεις από την αγωνία των ηρώων, μέχρι και τον ιδρώτα που κυλάει στα κορμιά τους...ακούς τα κουνούπια να βουίζουν στα αυτιά σου, και το χαλάζι να σφυροκοπάει το δέρμα σου.
Επίσης σε γυρνάει στα παιδικά σου χρόνια και σου ξυπνάει δικές σου αναμνήσεις...βέβαια μπορεί να μην ήταν τόσο δραματική η δική μας κατάσταση και να μην υπήρχε πτώμα, αλλά και πάλι στα παιδικά μας μάτια όλα φάνταζαν αλλιώς!

Το αγάπησα, σε σημείο να θέλω να πιάσω ένα παρόμοιο του Κινγκ στο καπάκι, μόνο και μόνο για να με ταξιδέψει ξανά πίσω στα καλοκαίρια της παιδικής μου ηλικίας.
...και φυσικά σκοπεύω να ξαναδώ και την ταινία σύντομα!

Α ρε Κινγκ τι μας κάνεις ώρες ώρες...💕
Profile Image for Tamoghna Biswas.
284 reviews112 followers
May 12, 2023
Not a review: This is as close to perfection as Stephen King could get. Of all his works that I have read yet, though I love the majority of them, none are as flawless as this novella. It is an outstanding, heartwarming, yet very gritty, pessimistic coming-of-age story. It has a rare, timeless quality that is at times semi-autobiographical, and told in a not-so-conventional structure. However, it took me quite a while to actually start it, whereas I had read all the other 3 novellas of Different Seasons quite a number of months before. Something told me this demanded more time, and yet needed to be finished in a single sitting. Hence...

Rant: I was debating a lot about this rating, as I always do when I rate something this high: Dude, you rated Fitzgerald and Morrison 2 or 3, and now are you kidding me? 5 stars to most works of Stephen King? You're biased AF.

Maybe I am. Or maybe, it is as simple as the fact that he has written so much, and I have only read some of his best yet, so it's rather unlikely that all of his other works would get this much appraisal from me. Or maybe I like his storytelling better than many critically acclaimed authors. Think whatever you want. (And no, highbrow people do scoff. I am tired of explaining over and over)
Profile Image for Ishraque Aornob.
Author 22 books255 followers
April 15, 2020
ক্যাসেল রক শহরে বসবাসকারী বারো বছর বয়সী চারজন কিশোর। গর্ডন, ক্রিস, টেডি, ভাৰ্ণ। একদিন চার বন্ধু খোঁজ পায় শহর থেকে ত্রিশ কিলোমিটার দূরে রেললাইনের ধারে একটা মৃতদেহ পড়ে রয়েছে। মৃতদেহ আবিষ্কারের রোমাঞ্চে হেটে রওনা দেয় চারজন। শুরু হয় তাদের অভিযান। পথের বাধাবিপত্তি পেরিয়ে পারবে ওরা অভিযান সফল করতে?

স্টিফেন কিংয়ের দারুণ এক আখ্যান দ্য বডি। স্টিফেন কিংয়ের নাম শুনে রগরগে হরর কিংবা থ্রিলার বলে মনে করলে আশাহত হতে হবে আপনাকে। তবুও বইটা শেষ করার পর আশাহত হবেন না আপনি। বেরিয়ে আসতে পারে দীর্ঘশ্বাস। কিছু একটা হারানোর ব্যথা বা হাহাকার। দ্য বডি বইটি আসলে গর্ডন নামক একজন বিখ্যাত লেখকের স্মৃতিচারণ। তার ছোটবেলায় বন্ধুদের সাথে এক রোমাঞ্চকর অভিযানের স্মৃতিচারণ। মাঝেমধ্যে উঠে এসেছে থ্রিল, কি হয় কি হয় একটা ভাব। মাঝেমধ্যে উঠে এসেছে জীবনদর্শন। ঠিক বারো বছর বয়সী বাচ্চাদের মধ্যেও যে জীবনবোধ বলে কিছু রয়েছে এই বইটা তার প্রমাণ। কয়েক জায়গায় মনে দাগ কেটে যায়। গর্ডন গল্পবলিয়ে, ক্রিস একটু দার্শনিক ধরনের আর ভাৰ্ণ ও টেডি সরলসোজা। টেডি ও ক্রিস চরিত্রটি ভালো লেগেছে আমার। বইয়ের মধ্যে লেখক গর্ডনের দুটো ছোটগল্পও আছে। শৈশবের স্মৃতিতে ফিরে যেতে বাধ্য করে বইটা। ফেলে আসা বন্ধুদের কথা মনে করিয়ে দেয়। গর্ডন চরিত্রটির মধ্যে দিয়ে স্টিফেন কিং নিজেকেই ফুটিয়ে তুলতে চেয়েছেন কিনা সেটা পাঠকরা বিচার করবেন নাহয়।
দারুণ বইটা অনুবাদ করেছেন উচ্ছ্বাস তৌসিফ। অনুবাদ ভালো লেগেছে। বাংলায় দর্শন ও জীবনবোধের বর্ণনার ভাব ঠিক রাখতে পেরেছেন। তবে কয়েকজায়গায় একটু এলোমেলো লেগেছে। এখানে অনুবাদকের দোষ দেয়া যাবে না। কিংয়ের স্মৃতিচারণমূলক বইয়ের অনুবাদ করার অভিজ্ঞতা থেকে বলতে পারি কয়েক জায়গায় বর্ণনাভঙ্গি হুবুহু আক্ষরিক অনুবাদ সম্ভব নয় আবার ভাবানুবাদও মানায় না। তখনই একটু এলোমেলো হয়। সেটা এত সুন্দর বইয়ে কোনো সমস্যা করেনি।

দ্য বডি
স্টিফেন কিং
অনুবাদ: উচ্ছ্বাস তৌসিফ
বাতিঘর প্রকাশনী
প্রচ্ছদ: ডিলান
Profile Image for Sam.
172 reviews3 followers
October 22, 2018
The only other thing that I've ever read by Stephen King roughly the first 200 pages of Under The Dome. I gave up on it after I realized how vulgar the writing was. That was a while ago, and I have read many books since then, and my tastes have developed more. I decide to try out reading The Body because it was classified as young adult, and it might be less...
The book was perfectly fine, It was almost similar to the Outsiders. It was just shy of 200 pages, and if it was any longer, I would have never entertained the idea of reading it. It was still a little graphic to be classified as young adult, but I suppose that is the best you will get with a Stephen King book.

3.5/5 stars. I may read something else by Stephen King, but it will not be anywhere in the foreseeable future.
Profile Image for Shaun Stanley.
912 reviews
April 14, 2023
The Body is novella written by Stephen King. It was originally released in 1982 in the short story collection Different Seasons.

Gordie, Chris, Teddy, and Vern are twelve year old boys living in Castle Rock, Maine in the 1960s. The boys get together regularly to read comics, play baseball, and just shoot the shit as kids do. One morning Vern overhears his brother and a friend talking about a dead body they spotted deep in the woods near the local train track. Afraid to tell the police, they decide it’s best to just forget what they saw. Vern tells the rest of his friends and it’s decided they must go on a mission to find the dead body and return it so they can become town famous.

Four boys traveling to see a dead body became one of the best coming age stories in modern fiction. Whatever you want to say about Stephen King’s work, he knows how to write teenage boys. The character dialogue, actions, motivations, and obsessions are perfectly captured and feel incredibly genuine. In what is a short book, especially for Stephen King, there is a huge amount of character development. Each kid has an incredibly unique personality with distinct family backgrounds. I believe what makes the book so incredibly special is how grounded is: everything in the book could easily happen to a group of kids out hiking in the woods - even today. It’s so easy to picture in your mind. I think this one will stay with me for a while.
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