Includes the story “Premium Harmony”—set in the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine
The masterful #1 New York Times bestselling story collection from O. Henry Prize winner Stephen King that includes twenty-one iconic stories with accompanying autobiographical comments on when, why and how he came to write (or rewrite) each one.
For more than thirty-five years, Stephen King has dazzled readers with his genius as a writer of short fiction. In this new collection he introduces each story with a passage about its origins or his motivations for writing it.
As Entertainment Weekly said about this collection: “Bazaar of Bad Dreams is bursting with classic King terror, but what we love most are the thoughtful introductions he gives to each tale that explain what was going on in his life as he wrote it."
There are thrilling connections between stories; themes of morality, the afterlife, guilt, what we would do differently if we could see into the future or correct the mistakes of the past. In “Afterlife,” a man who died of colon cancer keeps reliving the same life, repeating his mistakes over and over again. Several stories feature characters at the end of life, revisiting their crimes and misdemeanors. Others address what happens when someone discovers that he has supernatural powers—the columnist who kills people by writing their obituaries in “Obits;” the old judge in “The Dune” who, as a boy, canoed to a deserted island and saw names written in the sand, people who then died in freak accidents. In “Morality,” King looks at how a marriage and two lives fall apart after the wife and husband enter into what seems, at first, a devil’s pact they can win.
“I made these stories especially for you,” says King. “Feel free to examine them, but please be careful. The best of them have teeth.”
-Batman and Robin Have an Altercation
-Bad Little Kid
-The Bone Church
-Herman Wouk Is Still Alive
-Under the Weather
-The Little Green God of Agony
-That Bus Is Another World
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
You’ll stay up much too late reading these shiver-inducing short stories from America’s best horror writer. Each tale is introduced by King himself, who describes his process and motivation. No matter what you fear most—illness, aging, abandoned spaces, carnivorous cars—the stories in The Bazaar of Bad Dreams will find their mark. Thanks to King’s trademark deadpan humor and unnerving insight into the sinister parts of human nature, this is a powerhouse collection with an amazingly good title. It's also an excellent reason to keep the lights on.
A dream team of talented performers reads these 18 tales and two poems by master fictioneer King. Several of the stories including "Blockade Billy," a baseball yarn with a predictable violent punch line, and "Under the Weather," an exploration of the grim effect a tragedy has on an ad man are not the author's strongest, but they are given a boost by, respectively, Craig Wasson's keep-rounding-the-bases-and-slide-into-home exuberance and Peter Friedman's conversational narration, which shifts the emphasis from the repetitiveness of what he's saying to the compelling way he's saying it. Other stories are as strikingly composed as they are performed. As wonderful as the professional readers are, it is King's nasal voice that distinguishes the production, preceding each story with information about its creation. He also begins the collection with an intriguing introduction explaining the differences between writing novels and short fiction, warning about the stories that follow: "The best of them have teeth." A Scribner hardcover.
I really like this collection, but I must admit that I skipped the poem and Blockade Billy.
Quantity over Quality
I was hoping for more horror or twilight zone twists and turns or irony. Many of the stories seemed to promise this but ended anti-climatic. I liked Full- Dark better even thought it had less stories they were richer and more twisted.
So good that it’s bad.
Mr King was at his best - alternately horrifying and amazing me. The stories that weren’t based in the supernatural - and thus were possible - were haunting and horrifying. This one gets a “thumbs up”, with a blanket pulled over my head.