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Summer of Night Hardcover – Jan 1991


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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Putnam Pub Group (T); 1st Edition edition (January 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399135731
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399135736
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.7 x 5.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 885 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (98 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,611,777 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Hugo Award-winning novelist Simmons pens an outstandingly eerie horror story about a group of Midwestern boys stalked by an ancient evil.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

A monstrous, timeless entity is devouring children. Adults either refuse to understand what is happening, or are themselves agents for the monster. A group of young boys, in uneasy partnership with an outcast girl, realize they must kill the creature before it devours them all. Simmons ( The Fall of Hyperion, LJ 3/15/90), winner of several prestigious awards for science fiction and horror (most recently a Hugo Award for Hyperion , Doubleday, 1989) ranks with the best the genre has to offer. In outline, this novel resembles Stephen King's It ( LJ 8/86). The children are well drawn and affecting in their bravery. This book should be in most horror fiction collections. BOMC alternate.
- Marylaine Block, St. Ambrose Univ. Lib., Davenport, Ia.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
First off, this is by far my favorite book (horror or otherwise). The setting and characters are detailed very well and Dan Simmons has a extremely vivid imagination when it comes to horror description.
The story takes place during the summer of 1963 in a small Illinois town, and revolves around a group of 12-year-old kids. The town's central locale is dominated by a school that also serves as a place of evil. The group of kids realize that an evil force is trying to kill them that is somehow related to this mysterious school. They get into several adventures thoughout the summer while trying to solve the disappearance of a local school-mate. Dan Simmons does an excellent job of describing everyday life for 12-year-old kids during a hot Illinois summer, and SUMMER OF NIGHT is full of suspenseful encounters with several adults who may or may not be evil killers.
SUMMER OF NIGHT is a true coming-of-age horror novel in the same category as Stephen King's IT, Richard Laymon's THE TRAVELING VAMPIRE SHOW, Robert McCammon's BOY'S LIFE, and Dean Koontz's VOICES OF THE NIGHT. If you're looking for very scary horror involving teenagers in about 700 pages then this is the book for you. Trust me, once you start this you will not put it down.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I started reading this novel about a year ago, then I stopped reading it due to having to work too many hours and college and all that fun stuff. Last week I found it while cleaning up my room and started it again, and I'm glad I did.
First off, this book is great for the sci-fi aliens taking over the world fan - which I'm not. I thought the book was going to be more horror, but it should actually be a sci-fi book than anything else.
As for scare factor, this book has some really good scary scenes where you skip lines because the action is so great and you want to see what happens, but it also has parts that are suppose to be scary, and you know they are suppose to be, but it is so far beyond reality that you just have to laugh or roll your eyes.
But I believe that is what this whole book is based on, how something so far from the norm of 1960 life in a small town could happen and the effect it has on the society (the older peoples many "reasons" and logic for the goings on are perfect).
Overall, if you have a weekend or week that is going to be pretty dull, grab this book and its sequel A Winters Haunting that I am currently reading also.
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By Shawn on Dec 30 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
From start to finish, this novel broadcasts Dan Simmons's talent for creating engrossing, subbliminal plots that burrow their way into your subconscious and reside there like festering worms. This book scares me on a number of levels, ultimately because of the relentless attack upon five unsuspecting but strong-willed children during a hellacious summer in 1960. Children die horribly in this novel, though these moments are not always fully described. Simmons lets the reader make up his own visuals, especially during the opening scene in which one young boy meets his horrible end in a basement bathroom, of all places. It also explores the nature of evil inherent in man himself, as seen in the deplorable acts of the local constabulary as well as a group of self-serving school patrons given to feeding their students to ancient Egyptian gods so that Armageddon may be brought about. Make no mistake, the death of the novel's key hero combined with the tolling of the ancient bell described in the story is likely the most disturbing element of the novel, due mainly to the events leading up to that murderous moment, events which shape and ultimately destroy one young boy's life as efficiently as a bullet to the soul. Give yourself ample time to swim deep in the waters of this wonderful novel. You won't regret it.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Summer of Night provides not so much a horror novel, but a rather poignant look at the lives of a group of boys on the verge of becoming young men. While there are some scares and moments of gore, the more appealing part of this story is 6th grade male insights into friendship, parents, and of course the opposite sex. The young heroes are impressive in their realism. One boy worries to himself as he races to meet what may very well be his doom in the form of an ancient evil, that some water on the front of his pants will make him look like a sissy who has wet himself. It is moments like these that set the tone and mood of the story, much more so than the horror elements.
There were two problems I had reading Summer of Night. One - The most interesting character buys it just when the plot gets tangled. Two - At times, a road map would have been helpful to understand the narrative. The author gets bogged down in describing who went which way on what road, where the road goes, which road it connects to and so on and so forth, losing the reader in a maze of meaningless street names.
While spooky, and occasionally jolting, the book doesn't quite frighten. But the one-liners delivered by the small band of gun-wielding reluctant heroes are worth the read.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Before I start this review I'd like the eventual reader to know that I consider myself a Simmons fan I've read almost everything he wrote and I admire the fact that he almost always excels in the genre he choses. This book is one of his lesser entries, I tried to like this book but i found myself really liking only three of the characters : Duane, Dale and Mike. I thought the others were either poorly drawn (Kevin) or unlikable (Harlan). As for the story itself well it's pretty much the same old gang of boys against an evil entity thing. I did like the link to the Borgias and the tunnels under the town. Other than that it is only o.k. having a few scares and a few moments of truth the description of a young one's summer. This basically feeels as if Simmons is doing a ''cover'' of a Stephen King book but with less agility than King.
The book is not bad or excellent, i usually expect more original work from Simmons. Or at least a very good entry in that conforms to genre rules while bending them like Hardcase. This one is a bit too generic and feels more like an attempt at greater sales figures. But if you like Simmons or this kind of storyy, give it a try - you might like it more than I did.
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