A super-exorcism that leaves the taste of somebody else's blood in your mouth and what a bad taste it is. King presents us with the riddle of a small Maine town that has been deserted overnight. Where did all the down-Easters go? Matter of fact, they're still there but they only get up at sundown. . . for a warm drink. . . .Ben Mears, a novelist, returns to Salem's Lot (pop. 1319), the hometown he hasn't seen since he was four years old, where he falls for a young painter who admires his books (what happens to her shouldn't happen to a Martian). Odd things are manifested. Someone rents the ghastly old Marsten mansion, closed since a horrible double murder-suicide in 1939; a dog is found impaled on a spiked fence; a healthy boy dies of anemia in one week and his brother vanishes. Ben displays tremendous calm considering that you're left to face a corpse that sits up after an autopsy and sinks its fangs into the coroner's neck. . . . Vampirism, necrophilia, et dreadful alia rather overplayed by the author of Carrie (1974).