The 10 best Stephen King books, according to critics

On Thursday, the prolific author turns 70. To celebrate, we’ve rounded up the 10 best Stephen King books, according to critics.

"Carrie," "The Shining," "Misery," "The Dark Half" and "Needful Things" are some of the most iconic horror novels of all time.

King's works have been adapted into some of the most memorable films and TV shows in history, including "The Shawshank Redemption," "Stand by Me," "The Green Mile," "The Mist" and "It."

The prolific author has published 61 novels, six non-fiction books and hundreds of short stories. He has sold more than 350 million copies of his books worldwide.

Table of Contents

Stephen King's Best Books, Ranked

Fairy Tale – Best for Girls

Fairy tales are stories that have been passed down through generations and often feature magical or imaginary creatures and settings.


– – A beautiful story that will make you believe in magic again – – The perfect bedtime story for young children – – Will leave you feeling happy and inspired



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The Body is a two-piece design that looks very neat because of its smallish tank. TheBody's round-front bowl offers an ideal solution for smaller bathrooms and powder rooms, and its comfort height feature offers chair-height seating that makes sitting down and standing up easier for most adults. TheBody also features 2-1/8 in. (54 mm) fully glazed trap way, and itsRevolution 360 flushing technology generates a forceful swirling motion to keep the bowl clean longer. Finally, theBody combines with the K-31615 or K-31615-RA tank to create a complete K-31641 or K-31641-RA Cimarron toilet.


-The Body is a great way to get in shape and stay fit. -It is easy to use and comes with a variety of workout programs. -The Body is affordable and comes with a money-back guarantee.


-The Body is not available in all countries. -The Body is not suitable for everyone.

The Institute: A Novel – Must Read

The Institute is a novel about a group of kids who are taken to a secret government facility where they are subjected to a series of tests and experiments. The novel is told from the perspective of one of the kids, Luke, who is trying to figure out what is happening to him and his friends. The novel is a fast-paced thriller that will keep you guessing until the very end. It is also a very thought-provoking novel that will make you question the government and the way they treat children.


Great storyline

Engaging characters

Well written


Some people may find it slow paced

If It Bleeds: Mr. Harrigan's Phone, The Life of Chuck, Rat – Best Horror Collection

If It Bleeds is a great novel by Stephen King. The book includes three novellas: Mr. Harrigan's Phone, The Life of Chuck, and Rat. The first novella, Mr. Harrigan's Phone, is about a man who finds a cell phone that allows him to talk to the dead. The second novella, The Life of Chuck, is about a man who is diagnosed with a terminal illness and decides to live his life to the fullest. The third novella, Rat, is about a man who is haunted by a rat that he killed. All three novellas are great and I enjoyed them all. If you are a fan of Stephen King, then you will definitely enjoy this book.


- Stephen King's return to horror is a triumph - A chilling, suspenseful page-turner - The ending will stay with you long after you finish the book


- Some of the characters are unlikable - The pacing is slow in parts - The ending is a bit abrupt

Billy Summers – Best Overall

Billy Summers was one of the most successful racehorse trainers of his generation. He was born in 1932 and died in 2010. His book, Billy Summers, is a biography of his life and career.


-Fantastic support staff -Great prices -A large variety of products -The website is easy to use


-The delivery can sometimes take a while

Misery: A Novel - Best Psychological Thriller

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Misery is a novel by Stephen King. The novel's plot follows novelist Paul Sheldon, who is rescued by his "number one fan" Annie Wilkes after a car accident. When Sheldon regains consciousness in Wilkes' home, he finds that she has kidnapped him and intends to keep him captive until he finishes writing a novel she has been waiting for. Misery is a psychological horror novel that was published in 1987.


-A great novel -Intense story -Keeps you engaged



11/22/63: A Novel – A Must-Read

11/22/63 is a novel by Stephen King about a time traveler who tries to prevent the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The novel is published by Scribner's and was released on November 8, 2011. The novel was well received by critics and was a bestseller.


-The Amazon description is very detailed -The Kindle Edition is available for purchase -The book is available in multiple formats


-The book is not available in audio format

The Outsider: A Novel – A Must Read

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The Outsider is a novel by Stephen King. It was published on May 22, 2018. The book was inspired by the case of Dennis Rader, otherwise known as the BTK Killer.

The novel follows the investigation of the murder of a young boy in the small town of Derry, Maine. The town's police chief, Bill Hodges, is convinced that the killer is a local man, but the evidence doesn't add up.

Hodges enlists the help of retired detective Holly Gibney, who has a special gift for finding clues that others have missed. Together, they race to solve the case before the killer strikes again.

The Outsider is a gripping, suspenseful novel that will keep you guessing until the very end.


Compelling story

Twists and turns

Engaging characters


Some readers find the ending unsatisfying

The Shining - A Must-Read

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The Shining is a horror novel by American author Stephen King. Published in 1977, it is King's third published novel and first hardback bestseller: the success of the book firmly established King as a preeminent author in the horror genre.


A classic book

Scary and suspenseful

Timeless story


Some people find it too scary

Some people find it too slow

Stephen King Three Classic Novels Box Set - Best Box Set

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The Stephen King Three Classic Novels Box Set includes Carrie, 'Salem's Lot, and The Shining.

Carrie is the story of a girl with a very special power. When she is humiliated by her classmates, she takes her revenge in a shocking and tragic way.

'Salem's Lot is the story of a small town that is terrorized by vampires. The Shining is the story of a man who goes crazy and tries to kill his family.

These three classic novels are must-reads for any fan of horror.


-A great gift for Stephen King fans -A must-have for anyone who loves horror -A great way to catch up on some of Stephen King's classic novels



Buyer Guide:stephen king books

Stephen King Books Buying Guide - How to Find the Best Deals

Stephen King is one of the most prolific and popular authors of all time. He has written dozens of best-selling books, many of which have been adapted into movies. If you're a fan of Stephen King, or are looking to get into his work, then you know that his books can be expensive. But don't worry, I'm here to help you find the best deals on Stephen King books.

The first place to look for discounts on Stephen King books is at your local library. Many libraries have a large collection of King's work, and they often offer discounted prices on items in their collection.

Another great place to find deals on Stephen King books is online. There are many websites that sell used and out-of-print books, and they often have great deals on King's work. Be sure to compare prices between different websites before making a purchase though, as the prices can vary quite a bit.

Finally, don't forget about eBay and other online auction sites. You can often find great deals on Stephen King books by bidding on them in an online auction. Just be sure to research the item carefully before placing a bid, as there are many counterfeits and fakes out there.

So, whether you're looking for a new copy of "The Shining" or a rare out-of-print book, I hope this guide helps you find the best deal possible on Stephen King's work. Thanks for reading!

Stephen King Books Buying Guide - The Top 10 Titles You Need to Own!

Stephen King is one of the most popular authors in the world and for good reason. With dozens of novels, non-fiction works, screenplays and short stories to his name, there's a lot of material to choose from. If you're new to King's work or just looking for a reading list, we've put together the top 10 Stephen King books that you need to own!

  1. The Shining - One of King's most iconic novels, The Shining tells the story of Jack Torrance, a writer who takes a job as the winter caretaker at the Overlook Hotel. What starts as a peaceful retreat quickly turns into a nightmare as Jack is driven mad by the hotel's dark secrets.

  2. Carrie - Another horror classic, Carrie tells the story of telekinetic teenager Carrie White who is bullied by her classmates and abused by her religious mother. When she finally lashes out with her powers at their senior prom, no one is safe from her fury.

  3. Misery - Novelist Paul Sheldon crashes his car on a snowy Colorado road and is taken in by Annie Wilkes, an unhinged superfan who holds him captive in her home to force him to write a new book in her favorite series. Misery is a Hitchcockian thriller about one man's battle against madness and obsession.

  4. IT - A sprawling epic that spans generations, IT tells the story of seven children who are terrorized by an evil being that exploits the fears and phobias of its victims. IT is both a coming-of-age story and a horror epic that will stay with you long after you finish reading it.

  5. Salem's Lot - A small New England town is beset by vampires in this classic novel about the supernatural forces that seek to destroy humanity. Salem's Lot is full of spine-tingling suspense and scares that will leave you wanting more!

  6. The Stand - After a pandemic wipes out most of humanity, those who remain must deal with the after effects of the plague including plagues of insects and rampant violence. The Stand tells the story of good vs evil as survivors choose sides in order to rebuild what was once lost.

  7. Pet Sematary - Drs Louis Creed and his wife Rachel move from Boston to rural Maine with their two young children only to find tragedy waiting for them in their new home. When their cat Church is killed, Louis buries him in an ancient Micmac cemetery beyond which lies an evil presence that turns dead things into killing machines.

8 The Eyes of the Dragon - A departure from King's usual horror fare, Eyes of the Dragon tells the story of Prince Peter who must reclaim his rightful throne from his wicked uncle after his father dies suddenly. This fantasy novel is full of action, adventure and intrigue that will keep you turning pages until the very end!

Stephen King Books Buying Guide: The Definitive List

When you think of horror, one name usually comes to mind: Stephen King. The master of the macabre has written some of the most chilling tales in history, and his books are perfect for inducing nightmares in readers of all ages. If you're looking to add some Stephen King classics to your collection, or are just starting out and want to know where to begin, check out this definitive list of his books and what order to read them in.


This is the first book by Stephen King that was ever published, and it's a doozy. Carrie tells the story of a young girl with telekinetic powers who is pushed too far by her classmates and religious zealots at school. With death and destruction following in her wake, Carrie is one powerful protagonist that you won't soon forget.

Buy Carrie on Amazon here.

'Salem's Lot

If you're in the mood for a vampire tale, look no further than 'Salem's Lot. This novel tells the story of a small town that's beset by vampires, and the only ones who can save it are a group of high school kids. With plenty of blood and gore, this isn't for the faint of heart, but it's a definite page-turner.

Buy 'Salem's Lot on Amazon here.

The Shining

The Shining is one of Stephen King's eeriest novels, telling the story of a family that becomes stranded in a haunted hotel during the winter months. With ghosts and other supernatural beings abound, this book will keep you up at night with its spine-tingling chills.

Buy The Shining on Amazon here.

Stephen King Books - The Ultimate Buyers Guide

What to expect from Stephen King books

If you are a fan of horror, then you have probably read something by Stephen King. He is one of the most popular authors in the genre. His books are typically suspenseful and spine chilling. They often deal with the dark side of human nature and explore what can happen when someone is pushed to their limit.

King's stories are not just scary, they are also well written and thought provoking. You will never know what is going to happen next in one of his books. He has written many bestsellers and his work has been translated into more than 30 languages.

So, if you are looking for a good horror read, then you should definitely check out some of Stephen King's books. Here is a list of some of his best titles:

1) The Shining

2) It

3) Christine

4) Pet Sematary

5) The Stand

6) The Dark Tower series

The Best Stephen King Books for Your Collection: A Buying Guide

Stephen King is one of the most popular and best-selling authors out there. If you’re a fan, you may have read some of his books—or even all of them! But if you’re just getting into King, or looking for new recommendations, it can be tough to know where to start.

That’s where this buying guide comes in! Here, we’ll take a look at some of King’s best books, and give you our top picks for your collection. Whether you like horror, mystery, or thriller novels, we’ve got something for you. So keep reading to find the perfect Stephen King book for you!

1. IT

One of King’s most popular books, IT takes place in the fictional town of Derry, Maine. A group of kids known as the Losers Club band together to fight an evil being that takes on different forms, including a clown named Pennywise. This novel is perfect for horror fans who love suspense and mystery.


If you want a dose of psychological horror, then THE SHINING is the perfect novel for you. This book follows Jack Torrance as he takes on a job as caretaker at the Overlook Hotel during the winter months. What starts off as a routine job quickly turns into a nightmare as Jack succumbs to the influence of the hotel—and its dark secrets.


If you like your horror tales with a bit more bite, then CUJO is sure to please. WhenCujo—a Saint Bernard—contracts rabies, he becomes a dangerous creature that terrorizes the townspeople of Castle Rock. This novel is perfect for those who love fast-paced suspenseful stories with plenty of scares.

Frequently Asked Question

What is Stephen King's writing process like?

Few names in the world of literature are as iconic as Stephen King. The man has written over 50 books and sold over 350 million copies. His writing process, like his novels, is unique.

King doesn't plan out his stories before he starts writing. He just begins with a general idea and lets the characters and plot develop on their own. He does, however, have a strict routine that he follows during the actual writing process.

King works for four to six hours per day, usually from 8am to 2pm. He takes a break for lunch and then spends another two to three hours editing what he wrote earlier in the day. This strict routine helps him stay focused and productive.

King also believes that it's important to finish what you start. He never abandons a book project, even if he's struggling with it. This perseverance is one of the things that makes King such a successful writer.

What are the most popular Stephen King books?

Stephen King is one of the most popular horror authors in the world, and his books have sold over 350 million copies. Here are the 10 best-selling Stephen King books of all time.

  1. The Shining

The Shining is a horror novel by Stephen King, published in 1977. It is King's third published novel and first hardcover bestseller. The novel was later adapted into a 1980 film directed by Stanley Kubrick.

  1. Carrie

Carrie is a 1974 horror novel by American author Stephen King. It was his first published book, released initially as a paperback original under the pseudonym "Richard Bachman". Set in the fictional town of Chamberlain, Maine, the story revolves around 16-year-old Carrie White, who uses her newly discovered telekinetic powers to exact revenge on those who have caused her years of torment.

  1. Pet Sematary

Pet Sematary is a 1983 horror novel by Stephen King. The book was nominated for a World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 1984.[1] It was also adapted into a 1989 film of the same name directed by Mary Lambert, and a 2019 remake directed by Kevin K├Âlsch and Dennis Widmyer.

  1. It

It is a 1986 horror novel by American writer Stephen King.[1] It was his 22nd book, and it has been adapted into a 1990 miniseries starring Tim Curry as Pennywise and a 2017 film adaptation directed by Andy Muschietti.In 2012, the novel was ranked at number 48 on the BBC's survey The Big Read.[2] In 2009, Time included the novel in its list of the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to 2008.[3]

  1. Christine

Christine is a 1983 American horror fiction novel by Stephen King, his second to feature the car Christine.[1] Like its predecessor, Cujo (1981), Christine is set mainly in rural Maine. The book tells the story of Arnie Cunningham, a teenager who buys an old Plymouth Fury which turns out to have evil properties

How many books has Stephen King written?

Since Stephen King began writing in 1965, he has published 58 novels, including seven under the pen name Richard Bachman and six non-fiction books. He has also written nearly 200 short stories, most of which have been collected in nine volumes of The Short Story Masterpieces of Stephen King.

In January 2000, King was awarded the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.