Legendary storyteller Stephen King goes into the deepest well of his imagination in this spellbinding novel about a seventeen-year-old boy who inherits the keys to a parallel world where good and evil are at war, and the stakes could not be higher—for that world or ours.
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 seven, and grief drove his dad to drink. Charlie learned how to take care of himself—and his dad. When Charlie is seventeen, he meets a dog named Radar and her 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.
King’s storytelling in Fairy Tale soars. This is a magnificent and terrifying tale in which good is pitted against overwhelming evil, and a heroic boy—and his dog—must lead the battle.
Early in the Pandemic, King asked himself: “What could you write that would make you happy?”
“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.”
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
In this dark fantasy by legendary horror writer Stephen King, an unlikely friendship opens a gateway to another world. Teenager Charlie Reade follows a barking dog to elderly, cranky Howard Bowditch, collapsed on the ground with a broken leg. Charlie feels a strange connection to the old stranger and his faithful hound, so he befriends and cares for Howard. But where did that bucket full of gold in Howard’s safe come from, and what’s in that creepy padlocked shed out back? Turns out to be a hidden tunnel to a land with two moons, an awe-inspiring deserted city, and a sleeping terror. But what’s more dangerous: the monsters from that world, or the monsters from ours? Narrator Seth Numrich provides rich, believable voices, from the youthful excitement of 17-year-old Charlie to Howard’s gruff pronouncements. Aspiring adventurers, survivors of difficult childhoods, and dog lovers alike will all find something they recognize in this tale of a young hero struggling with adult-level decisions.
Good not great
The master at his best.
I loved this book. It really is a fairy tale, (the Stephen King way).