Book Review: The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon by Stephen King

Updated on April 7, 2017


The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon is a short novel written by Stephen King.

The story follows a 9 year old girl who finds herself lost in the woods after straying from her arguing mother and brother to pee. She continues to wander around the woods for nine days, trying to find her way out. On the way she encounters mosquitoes, wasps, snakes, swamps and lack of food and water. She begins hallucinating and talk to her hero, baseball player Tom Gordon, for company. When she finally finds her way out of the thick woods she is helped by a farmer after warding off a bear with her Walkman and his rifle, and she wakes up, after passing out, to find that she in a hospital bed surrounded by her family.


The version of this book that I have is 217 pages long. It took me around 3 days to read as I made sure to pace myself. I was also reading other books for university, and I didn't want to get each storyline confused. I have heard of people reading this book in 12 hours, but I'm not sure how true that is.

The book is very well written, as are all of his books (in my opinion). I loved the way that this one was less fictitious than his others normally are. It really got to me as it is not difficult to imagine yourself lost in the woods and feeling terrified when the night sets in. It is a much more believable storyline than that of Pet Semetery or The Shining, for example.

I also found myself really liking Trisha, the main character. She was complex and clearly had a lot of thought put into her. However I feel that for 9 she is described as extremely (and maybe a little too) mature for her age. When I was 9 I couldn't even cook myself pasta, let alone navigate myself through thick forest, catch fish with a raincoat hood or distinguish North from South. For all the characters' realness, this let it down. To me it just seemed too unrealistic for a 9 year old town girl to know how to survive more than a week in the middle of the woods.
However, as I said, the settings, scenes and storyline were all very realistic and believable, and it was these things that scared me the most. I couldn't stop reading once I had gotten 20 pages in.

There are a few things that I didn't like though, and the ending is most of them. Throughout the book, the unnamed narrator tells us that Trisha feels like something is watching her. Then they tell us that she is in fact being watched, and its not just a feeling. The suspense to find out what it is that is watching her had me completely hooked. And then you find out.
Despite my intense love for Stephen Kings work, he let me down here. The ending was completely predictable, the 'thing' was incredibly boring, and the whole book became tainted for me. I had followed this girl around a wood, cared about her, and wondered what awful thing could possibly be waiting for her and wanting to harm her. I had guessed very early on that the sensible thing for it to be was a bear of some sort, but this is Stephen King. He doesn't even know what a bear is, right? He is ghouls and vampires.
Apparently not.


Now, I know Stephen King fans may read this and think that I should be burned at the stake for this. But hear me out. I am a massive fan, and I did thoroughly enjoyed this book.The problem that I had though, is that, lets be real, nothing really happens. We go through the whole book and about the most interesting thing that happens is when she hallucinates some scary looking priests and falls in her own shit. When I was nearing the end I was preparing myself for anything. Maybe some tragic ending where searchers are just minutes too late to save her, or some crazy phantom pops up and takes her as one of his minions. Yet none of this happened. She got out alive, and I must say I was relieved, but the majority of me wanted a much more exciting ending.

Overall I would rate this book 3/5, simply because I know he has much better work out there. And would I recommend this to a friend? Not before they have read some of his other books.

Questions & Answers

    © 2017 Elle Harvey


      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • profile image

        Gilbert Arevalo 

        12 months ago

        Elle, I'm also a Stephen King fan. I haven't read the story. I can't respond to your criticism. But you're entitled to your opinion, especially since he is an author who has pleased you with many of his other works.

      • rebelogilbert profile image

        Gilbert Arevalo 

        3 years ago from Hacienda Heights, California

        Elle, I'm also a Stephen King fan. I haven't read the story. I can't respond to your criticism. But you're entitled to your opinion, especially since he is an author who has pleased you with many of his other works.


      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

      Show Details
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)