Is what we are afraid of the result of unprocessed traumas from the past? The answer is not easy. Stephen King in his novel It, knocks us out of a sense of peace and takes us to the period of childhood, which is so often over-idealized by us.
The author takes us to Derry in the US state of Maine. It is a sleepy, provincial town barely visible on the map, like many in the USA. Although not entirely. Because something bad is lurking in Derry. He looks out for the victims and follows, like a shadow, the most vulnerable inhabitants, children who believe that monsters exist, and sometimes even had the opportunity to see them with their own eyes. King sensitizes us to the fears of the youngest, by the way metaphorically explaining that the sense of fear that matures over the years can also paralyze adults.
And everything starts so inconspicuously. Georgie Denbrough is playing on the boat, he is the first victim of a series of mysterious murders that took place in the late 1950s in Derry. It is also a very quiet death, the echo of which will be heard for years. Actually, it will mark the entire later life of teens belonging to The Losers Club - William Denbrough (Georgie's older brother), Richard Tozier, Benjamin Hanscom, Stanley Uris, Edward Kaspbrak, Michael Hanlon and Beverly Marsh. The young heroes - each of them being outcasts for some reason, a freak - decide to discover what terrifying secret the town hides. They find a trail to Pennywise's.
The demonic clown, which has already become a part of the classic monsters of the horror world, was for King, and thus - for the kids from his book, the embodiment of pure evil. Pennywise the Dancing Clown, sometimes also known as Mr. Bob Gray, was able to take the form of everything that the potential victim feared the most: a dead brother, a huge bird, a mummy, a werewolf. Or a clown - with pale skin and a reddish wig, who at the same time amused and frightened. Both children and adults.
King showed this in an interesting way on the pages of the novel, because we meet the members of The Losers Club as teenagers, but we also observe their later fate in the mid-1980s, when as adults, outside of Derry, they built their own world again. But Pennywise, woke up again to invite heroes to the deadly game. To confront evil, they must work through the biggest nightmare of their childhood.
King captured the end of childhood innocence and the moment of entering adulthood in a poignant way.
He managed to achieve it, as usual thanks to the work put in to meticulously recreate the fate of individual heroes. We notice that childhood traumatic events and life in an oppressive, closed community condition later decisions and choices. Each member of The Losers Club is trying to deal with waking nightmares.
The author, who has more than once proved that as no one can control form, he narrates the story in two ways, additionally it is marked by numerous digressions. The whole creates a suggestive image of the American province. Many images recorded in the book remain under the eyelids of readers. No wonder, it is one of the loudest and most interesting horror novels. King can move, frighten, hypnotize, like he did it before many times.