Hot Key Book Club: CARRIE by Stephen King

Stephen-King-CarrieCARRIE is the story of a high-school girl who is bullied at school and discovers she has telekinetic powers. She is repressed by her very religious mother and tries really hard to fit in at school. Eventually a prank that is played on her, sets off some horrible events.

Most of us here at Hot Key had read CARRIE before. Those of us that hadn’t had certainly heard of it, a pop culture reference that evokes American high schools, proms and the perils of teenage-hood.

Watch the video below to hear what we thought about it!

So now it’s over to you – we’d love to hear what you thought about CARRIE! To get you going, here are a few points we thought it might be interesting to discuss:

  • Religion plays a significant role in Carrie – most obviously through the character of Carrie’s mother, Margaret White. Do you think King presents a negative view of religion? What might Carrie have been like if religion did not play such a huge part of her life?
  • CARRIE is an epistolary novel, using extracts from a fictional non-fiction book written about Carrie, Sue Snell’s biography as well as telegrams, news reports etc… Did you enjoy the different types of writing King employed? Or did they hinder your enjoyment of the plot?
  • Carrie is bullied and picked upon by her classmates, the scene in the shower room after P.E. is particularly horrible. We were all surprised by how much sympathy we felt for Carrie as a character. If you did feel sympathetic towards Carrie how far did that extend, once she set out on her destructive path?
  • What if Carrie did not have her telekinetic powers? Do you think she would have found the inner strength to do something about the bullying?
  • King is reported to have said of CARRIE: “She made me a star, but it was a young book by a young writer. In retrospect, it reminds me of a cookie baked by a first grader — tasty enough, but kind of lumpy and burned on the bottom”. Do you think CARRIE is a ‘young book’? What could have been different?

Wh coul di tbe


In November, we will be reading WHO COULD IT BE AT THIS HOUR? by Lemony Snicket, the first in his All The Wrong Questions series, as chosen by Georgia. So get reading, and join us back here in a month for some discussions!