Read an exclusive excerpt from Stephen King’s forthcoming novel Fairy Tale
The writer’s latest, out in September, is the story of a teenager who inherits the keys to a parallel world.
In Stephen King’s new novel Fairy Tale a 17-year-old boy named Charlie Reade who inherits the keys to a parallel world where good and evil are at war.
“What could you write that would make you happy?” said King in a statement. “As if my imagination had been waiting for the question to be asked, I saw a vast deserted city — deserted but alive. I saw the empty streets, the haunted buildings, a gargoyle head lying overturned in the street. I saw smashed statues (of what I didn’t know, but I eventually found out). I saw a huge, sprawling palace with glass towers so high their tips pierced the clouds. Those images released the story I wanted to tell.”
Charlie Reade looks like a regular high school kid, great at baseball and football, a decent student. But he carries a heavy load. His mom was killed in a hit-and-run accident when he was 10, and grief drove his dad to drink. Charlie learned how to take care of himself — and his dad. Then, when Charlie is 17, he meets a dog named Radar and his aging master, Howard Bowditch, a recluse in a big house at the top of a big hill, with a locked shed in the backyard. Sometimes strange sounds emerge from it.
Charlie starts doing jobs for Mr. Bowditch and loses his heart to Radar. Then, when Bowditch dies, he leaves Charlie a cassette tape telling a story no one would believe. What Bowditch knows, and has kept secret all his long life, is that inside the shed is a portal to another world.
Fairy Tale is out Sept. 6, but you can read an exclusive excerpt from it and see the book’s cover at EntertainmentWeekly.com.