5 best books like Stranger Things in 2022 - Celebrila
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5 best books like Stranger Things in 2022

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As the world awaits the intense conclusion of Stranger Things’ Season 4 next month, the only way to kill time is by catching up on some reading.

While Stranger Things is entirely fictional and a result of the Duffer Brother’s amazing imagination, it has had its share of several tie-in books, comics and novels. These books may not be close to what the series really is, but they still provide a fun experience for the reader.

Let’s take a look at books similar to the popular sci-fi horror drama, Stranger Things.

From Sawkill Girls to Carrie: 5 into-the-unknown books like Stranger Things

1) Firestarter by Stephen King

First published in 1980, Stephen King’s Firestarter is a lot like Stranger Things. It’s a story about a kid with powers, enough to destroy or kill. The story follows former college students Andy McGee and Vicky Tomlinson, who volunteer as test subjects in an experiment orchestrated by a government organization known as The Shop.

However, the two end up with psychic talents, which get passed down to their daughter, Charlie. She is gifted with the most extraordinary and uncontrollable power – pyrokinesis, the ability to create fire with her mind. Soon after, The Shop begins to pursue this unexpected genetic anomaly, but what they don’t know is that messing with Charlie would do no good.

The novel has been adapted into a film twice, once in 1984 where Drew Barrymore starred as Charlie and another time in 2022 where Ryan Kiera Armstrong starred as Charlie. The films were directed by Mark L. Lester (1984) and Keith Thomas (2022).

2) Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury

First published in 1962, Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes revolves around kids of the same age as those in Stranger Things. The story revolves around two 13-year-olds, Jim Nightshade and William Halloway, who end up in a mystery after a strange carnival, fighting against evil forces. The novel is a classic coming-of-age story with a dark twist, just like the Netflix show.

This novel is one of Ray Bradbury’s unparalleled literary masterpieces, equally scary and suspenseful, and has become a timeless classic. It combines fantasy and horror, analyzing the conflicting natures of good and evil that exist in all individuals.

The title of the novel is taken from “By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes,” a line said by the witches in Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

3) Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand

Published in 2018, Claire Legrand’s Sawkill Girls has all things Stranger Things, from secret organisations to strange monsters, teen friendships, supernatural powers, and a small town with dark secrets. The novel revolves around Sawkill Rock, where teenage girls disappear – until Marion, Zoey, and Val step in and take matters into their own hands, that is.

4) Carrie by Stephen King

First published in 1974, Stephen King’s Carrie has had its fair share of film adaptations. While the first one released in 1976 with Sissy Spacek as the titular character, the second one featured Chloë Grace Moretz as the lead and hit theaters in 2013. The films were directed by Brian De Palma (1976) and Kimberly Peirce (2013).

The story revolves around Carrie White, who gets picked on by her classmates on the daily. What they don’t know, though, is that she has a gift – Carrie can move things with her mind, just like Eleven from Stranger Things.

Unfortunately, her power becomes a problem as an unexpected act of cruelty turns her gift into a weapon of horror and destruction.

5) The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle

Published in 2016, Victor LaValle’s The Ballad of Black Tom retells H.P. Lovecraft’s The Horror at Red Hook. It revolves around Charles Thomas Tester, who delivers an occult tome to a sorceress in Queens. Unwittingly, Charles opens up the door to dark magic, awakening the Sleeping King.

The second season of Stranger Things was also inspired by H.P. Lovecraft as the monster drew inspiration from the mythical horror fiction of the 20th century author.

In an interview with EW, the Duffer brothers explained:

“There’s an H.P. Lovecraft sort of approach, this inter-dimensional being that is sort of beyond human comprehension. We purposely don’t want to go too much into what it is or what it wants.”

Honorable mentions include It, Meddling Kids, The Secret History, My Best Friends Exorcism, White Is For Witching, The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore and Station Eleven.

The first volume of Stranger Things season 4 dropped last month and sent the entire internet into a frenzy due to its brilliant storyline, soundtrack and acting. It revolved around the rise of a new villain with three parallel plotlines – the first one taking place in Hawkins with Dustin, Max, Erica, Steve, Nancy, Robin, Lucas, and Eddie Munson; the second plotline involving Mike visiting Eleven, Will, Jonathan, and Argyle; and the third plotline around Joyce, Murray, and Hopper in a Russian prison.

Season 4 Vol. 2 will premiere Friday, July 1.

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