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Pet Sematary

Updated on September 5, 2014
Introductory picture is my copy of Pet Sematary.
Introductory picture is my copy of Pet Sematary.

Pet Sematary Review

If you knew of a way to resurrect a beloved pet that died, what would you do? What would you do if your child died?

Pet Sematary is about a mystical burial ground that children use to bring their dead pets back to life. Through generations the legend of the Micmac burial grounds has been passed down. The children in a small Maine town tend to the cemetery that's near the Micmac burial grounds. When Louis Creed and his family move to Ludlow, Maine they are introduced to the Pet Sematary, and are warned against going to the burial ground that lies just beyond. When his daughter's cat dies while she is away, Louis Creed buries him on the hallowed Micmac burial grounds. When tragedy befalls his family, Louis Creed acts in desperation to put his family back together.

Pet Sematary is a very frightening and engaging book. Stephen King uses the natural desire to keep loved ones alive to create a tale that is both creepy and heart-breaking. This is one of Stephen King's best books.

Hey-ho! Let's go!

Pet Sematary
Pet Sematary

"Sometimes dead is better."

First published in 1983, Stephen King's Pet Sematary remains one of his quintessential books.


Major Themes

Possible Spoilers, though I don't reveal anything in detail

Pet Sematary is a story of learning to accept death as a part of life. The children have to learn to accept the death of their pets, and the book carries three generations through tragic loss of loved ones, showing how each generation handles the fact of death. The Micmac burial ground allows the children's pets to have a second chance at life. The Pet Sematary serves as a symbol of the children's eventual acceptance of death, as that is where their pets are buried the second time.

Death is the ultimate separation. People can leave you in life, but when someone dies you know they're never coming back. Ironically, in Pet Sematary, the desire to avoid death ends up causing separation. When people are resurrected in the book, they have an almost supernatural knowledge of others' secrets and use this knowledge to drive wedges between people, blowing apart relationships. At the end of the novel the protagonist is playing Solitaire. The man who would do anything to keep his family together ends up alone, and the person who learns to accept death as a part of life is safe in the arms of family.

The Micmac burial ground can be seen as the manifestation of obsession with a deceased loved one. When someone you care about dies, it's natural to remember them and focus on the life they had. But if you focus too much on the deceased it can seem like they are haunting you. You can start to hear their voice in your head as the memories keep circulating, if you lived with them you might still feel them around the house. And if you have to go through their stuff, dirty secrets might be revealed. Like in Pet Sematary, if you obsess too much over the dead, it will drive you away from the living.

"I don't want Church to be like all those dead pets!" she burst out, suddenly tearful and furious. "I don't want Church to ever be dead! He's my cat! He's not God's cat! Let God have His own cat! Let God have all the damn old cats He wants, and kill them all! Church is mine!"

What are your thoughts about escaping death?

Would you bring a deceased loved one back to life if you could?

Yes. I miss my deceased love ones too much, I would have to try if I could.

Yes. I miss my deceased love ones too much, I would have to try if I could.

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  • cultureoddyssey 5 years ago

    I think the power of the book is that it reaches deep inside to a place where we know that, consumed with grief, we'd do anything, no matter how damaging, to be able to get back the ones we love.

No. I miss my deceased loved ones, but death is a part of life and we have to accept it.

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  • anonymous 5 years ago

    No, learning to let go and accept death is part of life.

  • Marigold Tortelli 5 years ago

    I'm on the fence about this. I would love to see my dead loved ones again, but I've seen too many horror movies and read too many scary books to think that resurrecting the dead is a good idea. The person's essence would likely be gone and it's impossible to know what would replace it.

Rate it, if you dare... - If you've already read Pet Sematary, rate it here.

On a scale of 1-7, what did you REALLY think?

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The Ramones

Stephen King is a fan of the Ramones. He makes several references to their song Blitzkrieg Bop in Pet Sematary, and the Ramones wrote a song based on Pet Sematary.

How Unrealistic is Pet Sematary?

Of course there's no way people can raise the dead, but there have been many advancements in cloning. Cloning a pet is becoming more and more common. It's still prohibitively expensive for most people; but, like with all other technology, the more popular it becomes the cheaper it will get. It won't be long before we are able to fully clone a human being. (In fact the technology would be the same, but the risk is too high because there are far more deformed embryos than healthy embryos when cloning is concerned). My high school biology teacher once said you can't clone a soul. Whether you believe in a soul or not, a cloned human would be psychologically unprecedented. Would they feel less than human? Would they become psychopaths who resented not being "natural"? The only thing that we know for sure is that, whether a dog or a human, a clone will have a different personality than the original copy (and there's no guarantee that the original and the clone will look exactly the same, either). Memories cannot be cloned, and a great deal of a person's (or other animal's) personality comes from their past experiences.

What are your thoughts about cloning?

Are you for cloning or against cloning?

I don't see any problem with cloning.

I don't see any problem with cloning.

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No comments yet.

Cloning is unethical.

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© 2011 Marigold Tortelli

What are your thoughts about Pet Sematary?

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    • tvyps profile image

      Teri Villars 4 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      This is great! Happy Stephen King Day!

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 5 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      I haven't read Pet Sematary but am reading 11/22/63 right now. His books are usually so good!

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 5 years ago from Southampton, UK

      I haven't read the book or seen the movie, but Stephen King's books are usually pretty gripping.

    • JoyfulReviewer profile image

      JoyfulReviewer 5 years ago

      I haven't read "Pet Cemetary", but your review makes it sound like a good scary read.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I read Pet Sematary in the eighties and loved it. But I absolutely hated the movie. Nice lens!

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 5 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Congrats on being listed in the Best Books of 2011.

    • Philmac128 profile image

      Philmac128 5 years ago

      I read many Stephen King books when I was younger and can say they caused me more than one sleepless night and if my memory serves me right it was pet sematary and Cujo that caused the most restlessness. A good lens that has evoked some memories.

    • Zut Moon profile image

      Zut Moon 5 years ago

      I've been meaning to read it for years. Right now, it's in the queue ...

      You should recommend it in The Unofficial Squidoo Book Club ....