Book Reviews of Dolores Claiborne

Dolores Claiborne
Dolores Claiborne
Author: Stephen King
PBS Market Price: $8.09 or $4.19+1 credit
ISBN-13: 9780451177094
ISBN-10: 0451177096
Publication Date: 12/1/1993
Pages: 384
Rating:
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 404

3.8 stars, based on 404 ratings
Publisher: Signet Book
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

60 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 62 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Excellent story of a mother trying to protect her daughter at the expense of her own life. Delores Claiborne's relationship with her employer, her husband, her daughter, and the town detective are all interwoven into this awesome tale. Not a classic horror story but King's storytelling is stellar.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 7 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I really like the style of writing Stephen King used in this book. The narrative kept me engrossed.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on
Helpful Score: 2
Thirty years ago, the day of the eclipse, Dolores Claiborne's husband died. The town has been wanting to know for all of these years how he died....now they will find out the truth. Terrific Stephen King!
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on
Helpful Score: 2
A little hard, uneasy to read in the beginning, but a very terrifying read about one woman's vengeance against her insane husband. Don't read before you go to bed, I had nightmares the whole time I read this book! LOL
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 45 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book is unique in that's it's a dramatic monologue...the entire story is told through the words of one woman being questioned by the police, and only through her verbal reactions do you know anything at all about the setting. I'm not sure I'd like to read many books written this way, but as a one-time experiment, it works. Within the story, Dolores tells many stories of her life and that of her fmily and employer, whom she is suspected of killing. It's an odd way to tell a story, but King's style does show in the detail of Dolores' verbal recollections. I enjoyed it very much.
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Helpful Score: 1
King gives new definition to the term cold blooded murder in the classic macabre twist of plot style he is so good at...not to miss...
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Helpful Score: 1
Stephen King can make your blood run cold with the most commonplace of scenarios - don't you love it?! He takes the dreary life of a "jumped up housekeeper" for a "high-ridin' bitch" and creates a story that demands the reader's attention to the final page. The first person narrative of Dolores is an authentic feminine voice from post-war America through the end of the century. Perhaps the most frightening picture is a time and a place where women's liberation had not gained even a token acceptance from men or from women, either. A word from Dolores: "Sometimes a woman has to be a bitch to survive, but bein' a bitch is hard work, I'll tell the world it is."
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Helpful Score: 1
I have never seen a Stephen King movie so decided to try the books first. It has great insight into the battered wife syndrome.
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Helpful Score: 1
Wounderful story. I think this is the best book Stephen King ever wrote.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 49 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book was so good! It's uniquely written, but you'll get the hang of it, and it acutally makes the book flow and more believeable. If you liked the movie, the book is even better!
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
excellent book! It is actually within the realm of being possible-so not really "classic King"
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Helpful Score: 1
I haven't seen the movie, but the book is an interesting read.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 14 more book reviews
Initially I saw the movie & loved it so I was thrilled to find this book in PBS. The book is even better than the movie was! The point of view from which it is written pulls you into the story right from the start! The protagonist's experiences give the book a dark, heavy feel. This is another great story by Stephen King!
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 60 more book reviews
For 30 years, folks of Little Tall Island have been waiting to find out just what happened on the eerie dark day Delores Claiborne's husband died-the day of the total eclipse. Now, the police want to know what happened yesterday, when her rich, bedridden employer died suddenly in her care. With no choice but to talk, Delores gives her compelling confession...of the strange and terrible links forged by hidden intimacies..of the fierceness of a mother's love and its dreadful consequences..of the silent rage that can turn a woman's heart to hate. When Delores is accused of murder, it's only the beginning of the bad news. For what comes after that is something only King could imagine..as he rips open the darkest secrets and the most damning sins of men and women in an ingrown Maine town and takes you on a trip below its straitlaced surface.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 8 more book reviews
(From Amazon.com)
More of a mystery than a horror novel, Dolores Claiborne contains only the briefest glances at the supernatural. The novel presents Stephen King as a writer experimenting with style and narrative, time and perspective. Fans looking for a skin-crawling, page-turning fright or an undead bloodbath will be disappointed, but a patient reader willing to savor King's leisurely study of character and island life will find many rewards. And all of this is not to say that the book is without suspense.
The story unfolds in one continuous chapter, told in the first person by the cranky, 65-year-old housekeeper, Dolores, who is explaining to police officers and a stenographer how and why she killed her husband, Joe, 30 years ago. At the same time, in her rambling monologue, she insists that she did not kill her longtime employer, Vera Donovan--notwithstanding what the residents of Little Tall Island may be whispering. Joe was a drinker, and, as Dolores gradually argues, he deserved to die for the horrifying crimes he committed against his family. But Vera, despite her cantankerous disposition as a lady governing her decaying estate with her precise rules about even the most mundane household chore ("Six pins! Remember to use six pins! Don't you let the wind blow my good sheets down to the corner of the yard!"), was a good woman--or at least not an evil one. She was the woman who hired the young Dolores and kept her on even after Dolores got pregnant again. Dolores cleaned and cared for her even as the old matron faded into senility.

Dolores Claiborne is a rich novel that recalls the regionalist writing of the turn of the century. It is a fine place for a skeptical newcomer--put off by King's reputation for outright terror--to start. And for fans, it is a book that offers new insights into an author who's an old favorite. --Patrick O'Kelley --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Back of Cover: For thirty years, folks on Little Tall Island have been waiting to find out just what happened on the eerie dark day Dolores Claiborne's husband died-- the day of the total eclipse. Now, the police want to know what happened yesterday when her rich, bedridden employer died suddenly in her care. With no choice but to talk, Dolores gives her compelling confession... of the strange and terrible links forged by hidden intimacies.. of the fierceness of a mother's love and its dreadful consequences.. of the silent rage that can turn a woman's heart to hate. When Dolores Claiborne is accused of murder, it's only the beginning of the bad news. For what comes after that is something only Stephen King could imagine... as he rips open the darkest secrets and the most damning sins of men and women in an ingrown Maine town and takes you on a trip below its straitlaced surface.



My take: I love Stephen King, and I think that he is an extraordinary author. I know that this is one of his older books but I am just now reading it. I thought that this book was a really good book. I think that Dolores Claiborne is a really strong character and she did what she had to do to save her daughter even though the consequences were great. Dolores has a tremendous spirit about her and I thoroughly enjoyed this book
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on
I have been a Stephen King fan since I was first introduced to his books over 25 years ago. This book was never one of my favorites because it lacks the in-your-face horror and strangeness of most of his other books. I also found the movie adaptation of the book somewhat boring. All that changed when I heard Frances Sternhagen's oral version of the book. She reads with gusto and nails Dolores' down east accent and idioms. I now fully appreciate King's development of his character. King is a skilled writer and Sternhagen brings Dolores Claiborne to life! The audio version is absolutely fantastic! Thus, having learned the error of my previous judgement, I also give the print version 5 stars. It is a work of literature - not pulp fiction.
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A GREAT READ!
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Everything she did she did for love? But who exactly did she do it for??
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Such a great writer
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A "stream of conciousness" narration unlike any other King novel I have read; easy to read and entertaining; awesome character developement.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 30 more book reviews
Fascinating and eerie!
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One of the best from King!
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 7 more book reviews
You can't really miss when you pick up a Stephen King book.
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Enjoyed these tapes tremendously. Sternhagen does an outstanding job of speaking in Dolores' voice.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on
I have been a Stephen King fan since I was first introduced to his books over 25 years ago. This book was never one of my favorites because it lacks the in-your-face horror and strangeness of most of his other books. I also found the movie adaptation of the book somewhat boring. All that changed when I heard Frances Sternhagen's oral version of the book. She reads with gusto and nails Dolores' down east accent and idioms. I now fully appreciate King's development of his character. King is a skilled writer and Sternhagen brings Dolores Claiborne to life! The audio version is absolutely fantastic! Thus, having learned the error of my previous judgement, I also give the print version 5 stars. It is a work of literature - not pulp fiction.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 21 more book reviews
A man dies on a solar eclipse. Dorthy's husband.
Another man dies in her care. Who is causing the deaths?
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 28 more book reviews
More of a mystery than a horror novel, Dolores Claiborne contains only the briefest glances at the supernatural. The novel presents Stephen King as a writer experimenting with style and narrative, time and perspective. Fans looking for a skin-crawling, page-turning fright or an undead bloodbath will be disappointed, but a patient reader willing to savor King's leisurely study of character and island life will find many rewards. And all of this is not to say that the book is without suspense.
The story unfolds in one continuous chapter, told in the first person by the cranky, 65-year-old housekeeper, Dolores, who is explaining to police officers and a stenographer how and why she killed her husband, Joe, 30 years ago. At the same time, in her rambling monologue, she insists that she did not kill her longtime employer, Vera Donovan--notwithstanding what the residents of Little Tall Island may be whispering. Joe was a drinker, and, as Dolores gradually argues, he deserved to die for the horrifying crimes he committed against his family. But Vera, despite her cantankerous disposition as a lady governing her decaying estate with her precise rules about even the most mundane household chore ("Six pins! Remember to use six pins! Don't you let the wind blow my good sheets down to the corner of the yard!"), was a good woman--or at least not an evil one. She was the woman who hired the young Dolores and kept her on even after Dolores got pregnant again. Dolores cleaned and cared for her even as the old matron faded into senility.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 159 more book reviews
This was another great book by Stephen King.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 6 more book reviews
Oh man, this book is just...compellingly awesome!! A must read if u haven't read it.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 23 more book reviews
great book
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 46 more book reviews
More of a mystery than a horror novel, Dolores Claiborne contains only the briefest glances at the supernatural. The novel presents Stephen King as a writer experimenting with style and narrative, time and perspective. Fans looking for a skin-crawling, page-turning fright or an undead bloodbath will be disappointed, but a patient reader willing to savor King's leisurely study of character and island life will find many rewards. And all of this is not to say that the book is without suspense.
The story unfolds in one continuous chapter, told in the first person by the cranky, 65-year-old housekeeper, Dolores, who is explaining to police officers and a stenographer how and why she killed her husband, Joe, 30 years ago. At the same time, in her rambling monologue, she insists that she did not kill her longtime employer, Vera Donovan--notwithstanding what the residents of Little Tall Island may be whispering. Joe was a drinker, and, as Dolores gradually argues, he deserved to die for the horrifying crimes he committed against his family. But Vera, despite her cantankerous disposition as a lady governing her decaying estate with her precise rules about even the most mundane household chore ("Six pins! Remember to use six pins! Don't you let the wind blow my good sheets down to the corner of the yard!"), was a good woman--or at least not an evil one. She was the woman who hired the young Dolores and kept her on even after Dolores got pregnant again. Dolores cleaned and cared for her even as the old matron faded into senility.

Dolores Claiborne is a rich novel that recalls the regionalist writing of the turn of the century. It is a fine place for a skeptical newcomer--put off by King's reputation for outright terror--to start. And for fans, it is a book that offers new insights into an author who's an old favorite
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 905 more book reviews
Good ole Delores--I loved her. She had brains and guts to back them up.Joe?? Did someone say someone murdered Joe?? Prove it then!! Joe ended up right where he belonged, and Vera--wellllll--I loved her too. She was the same ole b---- as Dolores and they too loved each other thru respect. Made for a interesting combo of people for this plot.
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This book brought the character to life by telling the story in a monologue. The character became very real to me. Hell hath no fury....
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I loved this book! It did take getting used to though. The writing style is not a usual for Stephen King. Once I got used to the writing, I couldn't put the book down. One night I actually stayed up until 12:30 in the morning because I couldn't put it down. I didn't even realize it was that late. Needless to say work the next day was grueling. I would recommend this book to everyone especially to other mothers out there. If my husband ever thought of trying even half of what Joe did, I would have done the same exact thing. Stephen King is a phenomenal writer.
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By her own account she\'s an old Yankee bitch, Dolores Claiborne: foul temper, foul mouth, foul life. Folks on Little Tall Island have been waiting thirty years to find out just what happened on the eerie dark day her husband, Joe, died - the day of the total eclipse. The police want to know what happened yesterday, when rich, bedridden Vera Donovan, the island\'s grande dame sans merci and Dolores\'s longtime employer, died suddenly in her care. With no choice but to talk, Dolores Claiborne talks up a storm. \"Everything I did, I did for love,\" she says, and this spellbinding novel is at once her confession and her defense. Given a voice as compelling as any in contemporary fiction, her story centers on a disintegrating marriage\'s molten core, where the mind\'s unblinking eye becomes huge with hate and a woman\'s heart turns murderous. It unfolds the strange intimacy between Dolores and Vera, and the link that binds them. It shows, finally, how fierce love can be, and how dreadful its consequences. And how the soul, harrowed by the hardest life, can achieve a kind of grace.
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For thirty years, folks on Little Tall Island have been waiting to find out just what happened on the eerie dark day Dolores Claiborne's husband died - the day of the total eclipse. Now, the police want to know what happened yesterday when her rich, bedridden employer died suddenly in her care. With no choice but to talk, Dolores gives her compelling confession...of the strange and terrible links forged by hidden intimacies...of the fierceness of a mother's live and its dreadful consequences..of the silent ragethat can turn a woman's heart to hate. When Dolores Claiborne is accused of murder, it's only the beginning of the bad news. For what comes after that is something only Stephen King could imagine....
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 278 more book reviews
The story unfolds in one continuous chapter, told in the first person by the cranky, 65-year-old housekeeper, Dolores, who is explaining to police officers and a stenographer how and why she killed her husband, Joe, 30 years ago. At the same time, in her rambling monologue, she insists that she did not kill her longtime employer, Vera Donovan--notwithstanding what the residents of Little Tall Island may be whispering. Joe was a drinker, and, as Dolores gradually argues, he deserved to die for the horrifying crimes he committed against his family. But Vera, despite her cantankerous disposition as a lady governing her decaying estate with her precise rules about even the most mundane household chore ("Six pins! Remember to use six pins! Don't you let the wind blow my good sheets down to the corner of the yard!"), was a good woman--or at least not an evil one. She was the woman who hired the young Dolores and kept her on even after Dolores got pregnant again. Dolores cleaned and cared for her even as the old matron faded into senility.
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King is over the edge on this one !
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100% better than the movie;)
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This has always been one of my favorite King novels. I have read it so many times over the years that I have had to buy several different copies of it.
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Dolores Claiborne is about a hard working woman finally pushed to extremes to rid hersself and her daughter from her abusive husband. This is her account as told to the police.
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Not the best King I've ever read, but not bad either.
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This book is in descent shape. It has a very small crease in the lower front cover, this is the worst place on it. I try to explain the condition of my books, I haven't done them all, but if anyone wants to know any condition of a book that I have posted, send me a message and I will gladly inform you of this.
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By her own accounts she is an old Yankee B....., foul tempered, foul mouth, foul life! People of the Island have been waiting for 30 years to find out just what happened on the eerie dark day her husband died. The police want to know just what happened yesterday when the rich man in her care died............

And she decides to talk, and talk, and talk............

Great read..........
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i haven't read this in ages, but as i recall it was very good. has a good pace and the story draws you in.
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acclaimed novel and deservedly so.
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This is a classic King book. Loved it!
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One of my favorite King books.
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For 30 years, folks on Little Tall Island have been waiting to find out just what happened on the eerie dark day Dolores Claiborne's husband died - the day of the total eclipse. Now, the police want to know what happened yesterday when her rich, bedridden employer died suddenly in her care. With no choice but to talk, Dolories gives her compelling confession of the silent rage that can turn a woman's heart to hate. When Dolores Claiborne is accused of murder, it is only the beginning of bad news. For what comes after that is something only Stephen King could imagine...as he rips open the darkest secrets & the most damning sins of men & women in an ingrown Maine town & takes you on a trip below its straitlaced surface.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on + 21 more book reviews
For thirty years, folks on Little Tall Island have been waiting to find out just what happened on the eerie dark day Dolores Claibornes's husband died-the day of the total eclipse. Now, the police want to know what happened yesterday when her rich, bedridden employer died suddenly in her care. with no choice but to talk, Dolores gives her compelling confession ...of the strange and terrible links forged by hidden intimacies...of the fierceness of a mother's love and its dreadful consequences...of the silent rage that can turn a woman's heart to hate. when Dolores Claiborne is accused of murder, it's only the beginning of the bad news. For what comes after that is something only Stephen King could imagine...as he rips open the darkest secrets and the most damning sins of men and women in an ingrown Maine town and takes you on a trip below its straitlaced surface.
reviewed Dolores Claiborne on
great story, as usual the book is better than the movie!
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Loved it!!
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Another Stephen King great novel
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Great Story
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suspenseful.
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good book
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This book has been on the shelf for a long time and a little yellowed but otherwise in very good shape. Hey, it is a Stephan King, not a treasured classic!
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Gently read once.
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Both ISBN numbers are exact and correct and match the book, however the cover is different.