Literary Mixtape | Christine by Stephen King

Christine MixtapeAs an alternative for a review, synopsis, or anything of the like, I decided to create a soundtrack for the book. Please note that quite a bit of this is intended to be playful and irreverent. I’m rarely serious and this post is no exception.

I’m fairly certain that most of my fears can be attributed to reading certain books too young. IT clearly contributed to my fear of clowns, The Stand convinced me that I will die of the flu, so it stands (couldn’t resist!) to reason that Christine might very well have contributed to my fear of cars. Because despite the fact that I’ve been driving for 15 years, I’m still exceptionally wary of automobiles. I still manage to drive…barely. But hey, as legend has it, we’re never more than three feet from a spider and I’ve yet to burn down my house. So…*

Christine tells the story of teenage Arnie Cunningham. Arnie is that kid. The loser, the outcast, the one everyone beats up on. Then he meets Christine. After Christine, he meets Leigh, and a tragic love triangle ensues. Of a sort. It’s not quite that simple, it almost never is in a Stephen King novel.

Given the killer car theme, the novel is surprisingly relatable. It starts with a couple of high school kids with high school problems – popularity, jobs, parents, and cars. King has a way of phrasing certain things that stick with me, even the idea of loneliness and isolation.

Maybe that’s one of the ways you recognize lonely people…they can always think of something neat to do on rainy days. You can always call them. They’re always home. Fucking always.

While Christine will never go down as one of the great Stephen King novels, it’s certainly a solid entry (well above Dreamcatcher, well below The Stand). It’s scary, suspenseful, and you’ll side eye your car for a day or two post book. It even makes the dreaded love triangle a palatable plot device. What more can you ask for?**

This was a difficult mixtape to create, if only because I had to walk a fine line between being creative and just using all of the songs King himself references (and it’s an extensive list). So, as the name implies, the result is a mix. Some I added (like Bad to the Bone and Midnight Rider) and others King quoted in the novel (like Drive My Car and From a Buick 6).

Enjoy responsibly.

01. Bad to the Bone // George Thorogood
02. One Is the Loneliest Number // Three Dog Night
03. Midnight Rider // The Allman Brothers Band
04. Bad Girl // Lee Moses
05. Roadrunner // Modern Lovers
06. Drive My Car // The Beatles
07. Racing in the Streets // Bruce Springsteen
08. Born to Run // Bruce Springsteen
09. From a Buick 6 // Bob Dylan
10. Wreck on the Highway // Bruce Springsteen
11. Last Kiss // Pearl Jam

What do you read when the weather turns cooler? I know quite a few or you are not the dark and scary types.

*If that’s not a sign that adulthood has been reached, I don’t know what is.
**What more could you ask for? To read this in September or October. This book begs to be read on a cool, dark autumn night (as I did, in participation with RIP X.).

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