Review refers to Illustrated Version: King's second novel, I think, and I still enjoy it. It feels classic, but still a great read. I had lost my hard cover of the original, so I bought this thinking, "Bonus, illustrations." Well, if you're buying for the illustrations, save the money. They're black and white photos by a photo-artist friend. They have little/nothing to do with Salem's Lot and are certainly not worth the steep price tag. I have all his books hardcover, now, so that's good news. This is a good, entertaining novel. Kingisms are here a-plenty, and his strong voice has emerged by this novel. It's Dracula revisited, and King admits as much. I did find the "boy and the man" less engaging than I remembered it (at the beginning of the novel), but once he hits town it flies along at a great ol' pace. Pure entertainment. The characters are okay, not as good as later novels (or Carrie) but it's still fun. Early King, very nostalgic for that reason.
Having read many books in the "vampire genre" which really emerged after Salem's Lot, I liked getting back to genuine creepy, disgusting, horrifying vampires instead of sexy and fashionable. The best vampire novel is still Bram Stoker's original, and this is probably the second best.