TommyKnockers by Stephen King

A story of how aliens overrun a small town and affect the residents residing within.


Public Domain Pictures - Scary Woods

Isabelle Spetalieri, Staff Writer

The secret surrounding the small town near Haven, Maine is a mystery to all. The residents residing in this town fall under an influence, an influence that ends up controlling them, changing them.

The book, TommyKnockers, written by Stephen King, is one of his first delves into the science fiction realm. Not only does this novel draw on intriguing elements of science fiction, but it also includes significant and eerie elements of horror. King’s dark themes can be easily discerned and his depth of writing leaves the reader with fear and a thirst for more.

In TommyKnockers, the story starts with a woman (Bobbi) who lives alone in the woods. She is an anti-social writer of Wild West stories. She stumbles across a metal object protruding from the ground, a little way into her woods.

This metal disc causes her some pondering. Bobbi continues to visit the disc, digging it up, and releasing something. The object affects her, giving her hallucinatory dreams and affecting her sense of time. Bobbi’s dog is also affected by the object and announces his desperate fear of it by howling continuously.

The book’s central character, James Eric Gardener, is an ex-lover of Bobbi’s, and as the events become more severe, and people are increasingly affected, he seems to be the only one able to save the town.

Stephen King got his inspiration for this story from H.P. Lovecraft’s work. This book was also written before King “cleaned up his act”, in the midst of his problems with drugs and alcoholism. Many metaphors are used in this story to show his struggles with his own addictions. He used a poem from his early childhood for the title of the book, TommyKnockers, and in the preamble. King used nuclear fallout and radiation as themes in the book.

The preamble to the book: “Late last night and the night before, Tommyknockers, Tommyknockers, knocking at the door. I want to go out, don’t know if I can, ’cause I’m so afraid of the Tommyknocker man.” shows the mysterious and dark themes written into King’s novel.

This book will not only keep the reader up in the late hours of the night with its mystery and questions, but it will make the reader fear the dark they are forced to take in.