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zaterdag 16 maart 1991

Pet Sematary by Stephen King

Lazarus, come forth!

Dr Louis Creed is uneasy as he drives his family, wife Rachel, children Eileen and Gage, and cat to their new home, a rambling white-frame house on the outskirts of Ludlow, New England. The children are tearful, Rachel is short-tempered. But the place is just perfect and the family meets Jud Crandall, an old and wily neighbour. He takes them exploring and shows them the Pet Sematary, where local children have buried their pets for generations. Only Eileen is slightly disgruntled. After all, her beloved cat is going to live for ever...

This horror story is so well-written that it simply must be classified as a 'Classic'. It has a bone-chilling suspense, very convincing characters with 'real' emotions and a plot-line that cannot disappoint. Although the decisions Louis Creed takes are quite unconventional, Stephen King still succeeds in letting them seem quite the natural to do. Even while reading this book I was constantly wondering: "What should I do if confronted with such a situation?", and I guess that's a really good sign.

But there is much more. This book has a depth that reaches far beyond the average horror story. Like the author himself has confessed it showed him levels of blackness that he had "no desire to re-visit". And I could not agree more. The main theme is clearly "death", or to use the words of Zelda, the sister of Rachel: "Oz the Gweat and Tewwible". But Stephen approaches this theme in such a personal way that the reader is bound the get a bit uncomfortable. It sneakily whispers into your ears that death might actually not be as far in the future as you like to believe. This makes this book ever creepier. So, be prepared to be thrilled in more than one way.

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