69. Roadwork by Richard Bachman (Stephen King)
68. The Running Man by Stephen King
65. The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
61. Cujo by Stephen King
48. The Wind Through the Keyhole (a Dark Tower story) by Stephen King
toward the middle of the book. It's one of the most terryfing books I've ever read (and as you can see, there's quite a few Stephen King books on my list).
28. No Country For Old Men by Cormac McCarthy
This third entry in the series is when things start getting bizarre in terms of genre and pacing. If you read the entire franchise back to back, the beginning of this book will likely feel odd and out of place. And then when things start to make sense, the pacing shifts again and now you're back in 1999 in the perspective of Jake--who died in the first novel. The first half of this novel is about Jake trying to come back to Mid-World from New York. Essentially, due to an event from Drawing of the Three, Jake is reborn in another world. And both Roland and Jake know it.
The best way to describe this novel is "genre bending."
18. Danse Macabre by Stephen King
A companion piece to "On Writing." Do you want to write/film horror, science fiction, or fantasy? Don't think about it until you read Danse Macabre. It'll expand your mind a great deal.
The Road is the greatest, simplest Post-Apocalypse story ever written. There's no plot, other than following the road. But it's the story that makes it emotional and powerful. If drinking a stale can of Coke (or was it Pepsi?) is one of the best moments in the boy's life, you know that this world is bleak. I dare you not to cry by the end of this book.
In my opinion, this is the best book in the franchise because it is the darkest and it's the shortest (that's not to say I don't like long novels--but this novel cuts out all the fat and hits the nail on the head). It's a shame that the film strayed so far from what made this book so endearing.
2. A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin
Let me begin by saying that this is a landmark in dark fantasy. A Game of Thrones and Clash of Kings--no matter how intense you think they are--is nothing compared to A Storm of Swords. You could say that the entire series is one long novel and that this part of that really long novel is when the rope really starts to get tight with tension. It takes about two hundred pages or so until the pacing picks up . . . and then you won't want to stop. I guarentee you that.