Pet Sematary is one of the most terrifying novels Stephen King has ever written. After finishing it in 1978, King famously put the manuscript away in a drawer, where it stayed for years because he believed it was too dark and bleak to be published. Although it eventually was in 1983, King wasn’t happy about it. He did it begrudgingly to fulfill the final terms of his contract with Doubleday Books.
“If I had my way about it,” King said in a 1985 interview, “I still would not have published Pet Sematary. I don’t like it. It’s a terrible book—not in terms of the writing, but it just spirals down into darkness. It seems to be saying that nothing works and nothing is worth it, and I don’t really believe that.”