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The Talisman by Stephen King

The Talisman (1984)

by Stephen King, Peter Straub

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6,61084571 (4.05)168
  1. 30
    Black House by Stephen King (Booksloth)
  2. 20
    The Gunslinger by Stephen King (deandroid)
  3. 10
    The Drawing of the Three by Stephen King (Valjeanne)
    Valjeanne: A real page-turner collaboration between Peter Straub and Stephen King! More "flipping" between alternate dimensions, shape-shifting good guys and bad guys, and a hero you'll love. :-)

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» See also 168 mentions

English (83)  French (2)  All languages (85)
Showing 1-5 of 83 (next | show all)
Read 11/2015
  DavidPowell | Nov 20, 2015 |
Boring ( )
  JJamieson | Nov 8, 2015 |
the story is a solid one, which makes sense since it's been told countless times in literature - the young man/knight/prince sent on a quest to find that which will save him/his love/the world and all of the obstacles he encounters on his way. i'm ok with this story, and even most of the tropes that come with it. but king's characters are usually more nuanced than these were - although maybe that's part of the fairytale-ness, that people are either EVIL or GOOD with really no in between. Or anything that makes them terribly interesting actually.

I liked the messaging about how actions can have a ripple effect through many worlds, even if we can't see or know it. i liked seeing jack become himself. and i liked bits of the writing. but a lot of this felt not quite right to me. i thought it was alright even in these places, and i didn't have trouble reading on, but it often wasn't quite right. i don't know if that was a factor of combining two author's voices/ideas/writing or if it just didn't have all that i wanted it to. it did seem to be missing some essential communication between characters, like something got lost between the two authors deciding to write something and actually doing it.

i liked this much more in my memory of it, and still enjoyed it this time, but would no longer consider it one of his best. probably not even one of his betters, although it does have shades of his good stuff. ( )
  elisa.saphier | Nov 4, 2015 |
For me, the best bits about this book were the excellent locations - a creepy, out of season hotel and its fantastical, horrific 'opposite', a deserted theme park (always a winner!) and a slow, open train ride across a dangerous wasteland. There were also some original and very memorable supporting characters and the flipping between parallel worlds was consistently well realised.

It misses out on the final star only because, for me, it was a little too long and I didn't really warm to the main protagonist as much as I would have liked. ( )
  garethmottram | Oct 27, 2015 |
Great novel...was not sure what to expect with this collaboration but it was amazing.
Moving right into Black House. ( )
  gopfolk | Jul 15, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 83 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stephen Kingprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Straub, Petermain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Well, when Tom and me got to the edge of the hilltop, we looked away down into the village and could see three or four lights twinkling, where there was sick folks, may be; and stars over us was sparkling ever so fine; and down by the village was the river, a whole mile broad, and awful still and grand. -Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn
My new clothes was all greased up and clayey, and I was dog-tired. -Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn
The book is for Ruth King, Elvena Straub
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On September 15th, 1981, a boy named Jack Sawyer stood where the water and land come together, hands in the pockets of his jeans, looking out at the steady Atlantic.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345444884, Mass Market Paperback)

On a brisk autumn day, a thirteen-year-old boy stands on the shores of the gray Atlantic, near a silent amusement park and a fading ocean resort called the Alhambra. The past has driven Jack Sawyer here: his father is gone, his mother is dying, and the world no longer makes sense. But for Jack everything is about to change. For he has been chosen to make a journey back across America–and into another realm.

One of the most influential and heralded works of fantasy ever written, The Talisman is an extraordinary novel of loyalty, awakening, terror, and mystery. Jack Sawyer, on a desperate quest to save his mother’s life, must search for a prize across an epic landscape of innocents and monsters, of incredible dangers and even more incredible truths. The prize is essential, but the journey means even more. Let the quest
. . . .

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:56 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Twelve-year-old Jack Sawyer braves the mysterious dangers of the Territories, a surreal parallel world, in his cross-country quest through the U.S. for the Talisman, the only hope for his dying mother and for his own survival.

» see all 10 descriptions

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