51 Best Books by Stephen King | Best American Author

Stephen King books

Stephen King needs no introduction. The King of fantasy and Horror writings himself has written, in fact still writing, the best of his works. Each one of his novels is a classic and received amazingly well with the audiences. Check out his works below starting with BEST ONES,


1. The Shining

A classic introduction to King’s work, centre staging Jack Torrance’s fight against alcoholism as he surrenders to Ghosts of Overlook Hotel. Inspiration was taken from King’s own stay at the Overlook Hotel fighting his own alcoholism.


2. Salem’s Lot

King’s second best work as per my ‘bests’. Story of a man returning back to his spooky hometown, taken over by Vampires. A gorgeously woven, and not “just another haunted tale”.


3. The Dead zone

King’s first hardcover bestseller which established him as a fine writer. Drifting away from his normal horror concepts, this one’s more on the science-fiction and time leaps dimensions. Playing his protagonist is the one who can learn anyone’s pasts and futures just by a touch of his hands. Setting out to use his psychic ability to handle his situation, is the story.


4. The Long Walk, 1979

King has his work of imagination in this gripping novel. Set in an alternative history wherein Germany won the 2nd World War and made North America, a Fascist country. A modern walking contest in which contestants have to follow strictest rules or die, with emerging a hero who fights back against the slanted social norms.


5. Different seasons, 1982

A dramatic collection of four novellas, Rita Haywarth and the Shawshak redemption, Apt Pupil, The Body, and The Breathing method, all exploring the horror genre in its own distinct way, linking with each other and describing pertinently the four seasons.


6. Pet Sematary, 1983

You might know this version of King’s horrific composes in the film adaptation under the same name but the novel is just more than undead cats and other pets. It is about the grief that is attached to it and exploring the deep worries that parents have for their children. Nevertheless, it is a brutal spine chilling tale.


7. It, 1986

Often described as the most iconic works of the 1980s, It, re-examines the horrors of childhood, of fears and dreams which every child burdened themselves through their lives. The shapeshifting entity that resurfaces every 27 years to lure the children towards their bad destiny, gives a glimpse of the fears that every child usually frightens by. Even more terrifying is the clown which it hides as.


8. Dolores Claiborne, 1992

Second in a row, feminist novel by King after Gerald’s Game. Narrating the story of an abuse victim, who is in feud with her boss, a vicious old woman and the sympathy that King generates for her and the women like her.


9. The Dark Tower,1978-2012

The series is quite a struggle shown of Roland Deschain who must counter the Man in Black across a vast desert in one surrendered world. Traveling between the different worlds, making friends and restoring his life and everybody in it, with some engaging series action, the series is non-linear, and that’s the essence of it.


10. Revival, 2014

The tale of the relationship between a man and a boy, the faith healer and his assistant, Revival is King’s one of critically acclaimed writings. Over-shining with cosmic horrors, still a fun and one of King’s enjoyable delivers.


11. The Stand

The stand remains to be King’s most popular works and the lengthiest one. Initially, came up in a shortened version in 1978, and finally released in 1990, the uncut and 400-page extra version. The novel is an affair regarding a flu-epidemic outbreak as a result of biological warfare, wiping out max of earth’s population. It gets King’s favorite character, an entity that enjoys universe hopping, Randall Flagg, re-appearing after “Man in Black” of The Dark Tower.




12. Danse Macabre, 1981

A classic collection of horror essays exploring the different strings right from modern 20th-century writings to Gothic literary works and long-extinct comic publishers, even the mid-century dramas. It is the fine illumination to horror writing, a guide that shaped King’s views.


13. The Jaunt

A sci-fi short story by King that became a cult classic. About the futuristic family who prepare “The Jaunt”, a journey through space involving a complicated time-warp.


14. The Man in the black suit

A winner of World Fantasy and O. Henry Award which has most of King’s favorite elements- The Man in Black, encounter between man and boy and cosmic horrors of all kinds. The story backgrounds a happenstance between a boy and devil in the guise of a gentleman.


15. Jerusalem’s lot

You can find this short story in Night Shift(below), which is a prequel to Salem’s Lot, of Vampires and gothic horrors.


16. Lisey’s story

A romanticized psychic horror genre, having a woman writer grieving over her dead husband and dealing with his dark secrets and the demons that haunt her.




17. On writing: A Memoir of the Craft, 2000

Such a writer as he is needs a memoir of his own. King included his life as a writer, his struggles and the lessons he learned which helped him to reach the zenith. Coupling his autobiography with deep wisdom on the very art of writing is what he has been critically acclaimed. The part where he gives his writing advices, is what he is being praised for, the most.


18. Misery

Paul Sheldon, a historical romance writer, crashes his car in a snowstorm with his legs shattered finds himself in captivity of a psychotic fan, Annie Wilkis a former nurse who is forcing Paul to bring dead Misery, heroine of his books, back to life, in his new book. King’s fantasy in this, is way above applaud able.


19. The Outsider

Stephen King writes what he is best at, touching both his general genres, crime, and horror. The arrest of a Baseball coach charged with murder and mutilating 11-year-old boy, open trails of clues and mysteries, and a quest to prove him innocent, eventually revealing some gruesome horrors.


20. Carrie

King’s first published novel and the most frequently banned books in schools of America, Carrie is about Carrie White, a bullied high school girl and how she uses her telekinetic power to avenge those who bother her. In the process, she causes one of the worst disasters in her town. The book received many film adaptations and opened King’s ultimate success doors.


21. The Green Mile

King has his characters with peculiar supernatural powers in his books, another being The Green Mile. About a death row supervisor and one of the inmate, who parades an interesting power to heal and empathetic ability.


22. Cujo

King has his inspiration going with his own encounter with a Saint Bernard in a garage where King apparently came for his motorcycle. A novel which King claims to not remember writing it at all as he was high on his cocaine addiction, yet won the British Fantasy Award, 1982. Cujo is about a rabid dog who killed four individuals in the fantasy town of Castle Rock, Maine.


23. The Mist

The story has everything, deadly creatures, supernatural beliefs, killings and spine chilling horrors at its best. After a thunderstorm, the fictional town of Bridgton is covered in thick mist with absolutely zero visibility, shielding horrific creatures who are out on the kill.


24. Christine

An automobile possessed with supernatural powers, thunders the town leading to a group of teens on the lookout and solve the mystery.



25. 11/22/63

Released in 2011, and instantly becoming Number one Bestseller of the year, ruling for 3 weeks. A time-traveler who attempts to prevent John F. Kennedy’s assassination which occurred on November 22, 1963…the title of the book.


26. Under the Dome

A small fantasy town of Maine is suddenly locked inside an invisible barrier dome, killing anyone who comes near it. The story of the inhabitants vying for survival is the book about.


27. Mr. Mercedes

Winning the Edgar Award for Best Novel, the story revolves around a detective who is taunted by a murderer. Although the book was meant to be a short story but King later came up with announcing it, as a fully published novel.


28. The Body

A thrilling coming-of-age story of a young boy who mysteriously disappears from his town and out on a quest are his four friends who journey to learn their own lessons and find the body of their dead friend. The novel also received a film adaptation under the name, Stand by me.


29. Doctor Sleep

A sequel to the 1970 novel, the Shining, reached the Number one position of New York Times bestselling novel. The ghosts of Overlook Hotel still wish to consume Danny’s Shining, while Danny is under the clasp of alcoholism, like his father, also he should save the girl with Shining power from the immortal True Knot group of ruthless people.


30. Gerald’s Game

King’s novel based on a sex game that turns fatal. Gerald and Jesse solaces in an isolated cabin to upturn their romantic life, until the woman accidentally kills her husband triggering a heart attack to him, leaving her handcuffed to the bed. The psychic thriller that involves Jesse listening to the voices of her head.


31. Desperation

Stephen King wrote two parallel novels, the other being The Regulators, set in the same universe with the same characters reliving their parts. Desperation is about a group of people who must fight back their abductor, who is possessed by an entity and captures people to the town of Desperation.


32. Needful Things

King’s writes about a shopkeeper who runs his business by exchanging goods for money and mysterious things in this novel. The first novel published after king came from rehabilitation from his alcohol and drug addiction.


33. Bag of Bones

Winning the Bram Stoker and British Fantasy award, this novel tells the story of a writer who suffers from severe blocks and delusions after the death of his wife.


34. Night Shift

A collection of short stories by King which was highly acclaimed with Awards.


35. Dreamcatcher

A collected theme of horror, suspense, and alien invasion is incorporated in the novel about a bullied boy with Down syndrome. The writing is believed by King, to have helped him recuperate from the fatal accident.


36. The Tommyknockers

Not the King’s favorite but a fine read about townspeople falling under the influence of a mysterious entity in the woods.


37. The Running Man

King’s first novel under the pseudonym, Richard Bachman. Set In the dystopic America which is under ruins and violent state. A running competition in which a man enters and is chased by hunters to kill them.


38. Finders Keepers

The second to the trilogy of the King’s detective thriller, following Mr. Mercedes. The book tells about the murder of a writer and release of his killer and events after that.


39. The eyes of the Dragon

A contrary to what King normally writes, its an epic fantasy set in the medieval theme and the fight of good and evil with magic, taking the stage.


40. Skeleton crew

Another of King’s short story collection including some of the classic like The Mist, The Jaunt and more, published in a limited edition of thousand copies.


41. Thinner

A black magic horror book about a lawyer who kills an old gypsy woman and finds himself cursed by the gypsy husband. He must find the Gypsy man to lift the curse and do his payback part.


42. The dark half

One of the many novels that King wrote under the pseudonym name, Richard Bachman. The book is about a threatening parasitic twin of an author, out on a vengeance.


43. The girl who loved Tom Gordon

The girl loses track of her family during Hiking in the forest and her only survival trial are the hallucinations she encounters of her favorite, Tom Gordon and his Baseball game.


44. Four past Midnight

A collected novella in one, just like The Different Seasons, strictly horror with few dashes of supernatural elements.


45. Rose Madder

Unusually King, but an excellent concept on domestic violence and thrilling supernatural, Rose Madder is about a woman who escapes her husband’s violence to start over but has to fight back her husband who intends to find and kill her.


46. Black House

A novel written teamed up with Peter Straub, a sequel to The Talisman. Set in a fantasy town of Wisconsin, a serial killer is on the growl and Lieutenant Jack Sawyer is again on the lookout.


47. Duma Key

A Number one bestseller in 2008, with King’s another feather of psychological horror. About Edgar Freemantle who after surviving an accident gets his arm amputated and further suffers from mood swings. As he finds solace in the island of Duma Key where he learns that the place is not good for daughters.


48. The Bachman Books

King writes once again under the pseudonym Richard Bachman here, a collection of 4 novellas namely, Rage, The Long Walk, Roadwork and The Running man.


49. Hearts in Atlantis

King knows where to put his classics together. Another collection of 3 short stories and two novellas. Intertwined stories to which King views on “his generation” failures. All the stories have their themes based on the 1960s and the Vietnam War.


50. Full dark no Stars

King’s collection of four novellas theming on vengeance- 1922, Big driver, Fair extension and A good marriage. A collection that received accolades of Bram Stoker and British fantasy award for Best collection.


51. Everything’s eventual

A short story collection of King’s favorite theme, Horror.