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‘It’ brings horror into your home

By Ally Pick, Round Table reporter

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In the wake of a new horror movie release, It, in September of 2017, the decision to finally pick up the monster of a book It was made.

It by Stephen King takes place in the fictional town of Derry, Maine, in both 1957-58 and 1984-85 where a group of kids, self-named “the Losers,” live. The book exchanges between the Losers childhood and maturity, both times plagued by the fearful task of defeating the evil that has lived under Derry for thousands of years: Pennywise the Clown.

Usually mention of the book brings the response of “isn’t that the one with the clown?” And technically there is a clown, but this clown is no normal monster. Named It by the Losers and earning the name of the novel is a monster that can take on a physical form of fears claimed by anyone unlikely enough to come across It.

In It, King explores not only the difference of fear in adults and children, but the power that children’s innocence and beliefs hold over adults. As children, the Loser’s club seem to come together due to what seems like fate, but their bond strengthens due to the pure acceptance of kids. As the novel winds on, more and more of the Loser Club’s decisions seem to be made by an outside force, and yet their bond grows.

Seven kids, Bill Denbrough with a severe stutter, Eddie Kaspbrak with asthma and an overprotective mother, Ben Hanscom known for his excessive weight, Stan Uris who is Jewish, Beverly Marsh who is the only girl and known for her abusive father, and Mike Hanlon who is one of the only African-American kids in town and the last to join the group come to uncover the horror that has lived in Derry since before Derry existed.

As the Losers Club forms Bill Denbrough, who comes to be the leader of their small group, is the most motivated as his younger brother, Georgie, was the first child to be killed in a string of murders during the summer of 1957.

Eventually the string of murders draws a direct line back to the monster living in the drains, It.

As the years of that summer pass and each member of the Losers Club moves away, they begin to forget the entire summer, then Derry, then their entire childhood. As the years pass only Mike Hanlon remains in Derry, the only one to never forget. As another string of murders begins in Derry and each death, looking a bit more like the fateful summer of 1957, builds, Mike is forced to bring the Losers back together and remind them of what it’s like to be kids.

As for the plot, there is nothing quite like it.

King finds a way to string horror, love, growing up, and fate all into one book that glides a reader along a road of dread. While there are certain parts of the book that don’t quite fit in with the reality of the world or the logic or adulthood, but that’s exactly the point of this book.

To tie in childhood imaginations and games with the prospect of growing up results in It being a fantastic universe so close to ours it could be a true story.

Along with the superb uniqueness of plot and character, King uses a type of candid writing that puts you in the mind of these children and adults alike, their fear palpable and joy tangible.

Even the monster is a creature, growing in the terror It creates, creates a realistic fear of loss of power.

As this new film comes out in the aftermath of a Mini-series entitled It, following a loose interpretation of the book that terrified an entire generation of kids, one can only hope the new movie creates a world almost as King’s words created.

“The most important things are the hardest things to say. They are things you get ashamed of because words diminish your feelings – words shrink things that seem timeless when they are in your head to no more than living size when they are brought out.”

This quote from King’s It perfectly describes this review, there is no possible way to create a paper that will encompass the magic this book creates.

So now there’s only one thing left to say, really, and it’s to go read It.

 

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‘It’ brings horror into your home