Cover image for Desperation
King, Stephen, 1947-
Personal Author:
[Large print edition].
Publication Information:
Boston : Compass Press, 1997.

Physical Description:
761 pages (large print) ; 24 cm
Geographic Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Adult Large Print Large Print

On Order



Now repackaged with stunning new cover art, this #1 bestseller is a chilling story set in a lonely Nevada town where the evil embedded in the landscape is awesome--but so are the forces summoned to combat it. Reissue. Copyright © Libri GmbH. All rights reserved.

Author Notes

Stephen King was born in Portland, Maine, on September 21, 1947. After graduating with a Bachelor's degree in English from the University of Maine at Orono in 1970, he became a teacher. His spare time was spent writing short stories and novels.

King's first novel would never have been published if not for his wife. She removed the first few chapters from the garbage after King had thrown them away in frustration. Three months later, he received a $2,500 advance from Doubleday Publishing for the book that went on to sell a modest 13,000 hardcover copies. That book, Carrie, was about a girl with telekinetic powers who is tormented by bullies at school. She uses her power, in turn, to torment and eventually destroy her mean-spirited classmates. When United Artists released the film version in 1976, it was a critical and commercial success. The paperback version of the book, released after the movie, went on to sell more than two-and-a-half million copies.

Many of King's other horror novels have been adapted into movies, including The Shining, Firestarter, Pet Semetary, Cujo, Misery, The Stand, and The Tommyknockers. Under the pseudonym Richard Bachman, King has written the books The Running Man, The Regulators, Thinner, The Long Walk, Roadwork, Rage, and It. He is number 2 on the Hollywood Reporter's '25 Most Powerful Authors' 2016 list.

King is one of the world's most successful writers, with more than 100 million copies of his works in print. Many of his books have been translated into foreign languages, and he writes new books at a rate of about one per year. In 2003, he received the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. In 2012 his title, The Wind Through the Keyhole made The New York Times Best Seller List. King's title's Mr. Mercedes and Revival made The New York Times Best Seller List in 2014. He won the Edgar Allan Poe Award in 2015 for Best Novel with Mr. Mercedes. King's title Finders Keepers made the New York Times bestseller list in 2015. Sleeping Beauties is his latest 2017 New York Times bestseller.

(Bowker Author Biography) Stephen King is the author of more than thirty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. Among his most recent are "Hearts in Atlantis", "The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon", "Bag of Bones", & "The Green Mile". "On Writing" is his first book of nonfiction since "Danse Macabre", published in 1981. He served as a judge for Prize Stories: The Best of 1999, The O. Henry Awards. He lives in Bangor, Maine with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.

King's book, The Bazaar of Bad Dreams: Stories, made the 2015 New York Times bestseller list.

(Publisher Provided)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

King's third new yarn this year is as pell-mell an action thriller as any he has written and one of his sweetest performances. It has several links to his new Richard Bachman opus, The Regulators ; for instance, it has some characters with the same names and occupations, though not personalities, and the same vaporous alien antagonist at the bottom of the same mine. The alien force is loose in Desperation, Nevada, and, having occupied the bodies of a succession of citizens (it needs to pass from one human vehicle to another because its vigor is so intense that its host hemorrhages to death within hours), has gruesomely slaughtered everyone else in town. Now in the body of a patrolling cop, it is picking up people motoring by on U.S. 50. Foremost among those are burned-out novelist Johnny Marinville and 11-year-old David Carver, who barely a year ago underwent a serious religious conversion and occasionally hears the voice of God. It is God--the God of the Christian Bible, both Testaments--Who eventually saves Johnny, David, and the rest of those who survive Desperation, but saves them only by means of their own free will and their own heroic and gory exertions. If King wants to show how to inject religion honestly and effectively into the normally crass horror genre, he succeeds beautifully. (Reviewed Aug. 1996)0670868361Ray Olson

Publisher's Weekly Review

From the vault of horror master King comes a terrifying tale of Desperation, Nev., a place ruled by a maniacal man in uniform and haunted by deadly secrets. In true King fashion, the story features a small cast of likable yet deeply flawed protagonists that may or may not make it to the final page in one piece. Narrator Kathy Bates, who won the Best Actress Oscar for her performance in the film adaptation of King's Misery, takes the reins and holds listeners rapt from start to finish. Bates has the inherent ability to make anything, no matter how over the top, sound realistic and immediate. A Signet paperback. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

It has been a remarkable year for King: His ongoing serialized novel, The Green Mile (e.g., The Green Mile, Pt. 1: The Two Dead Girls, Audio Reviews, LJ 5/15/96) revived an old publishing tradition that harkens back to Dickens; he closes out the pseudonymous Bachman saga with The Regulators (which will be released simultaneously with Desperation on September 24); and now, the first-ever abridged audio edition of his work is published. Desperation tells of a group of travelers who are unlucky enough to venture through the town of Desperation via Nevada's Route 50. One by one, the travelers are abducted by what at first appears to be a deranged cop; only later do they realize that he is something a whole lot worse. The disparate cast is intriguing, with center stage belonging to a young boy whose recent religious transformation worries his parents; an aging, alcoholic writer seeking to reverse his downward spiral; and a resourceful young woman who hitchhikes her way into a bad situation. Fans of King's unabridged recordings will chorus, "Why this, why now?": Desperation is the author's best novel since the early 1980s. Still, much of the story is intact, and the abridgment is extraordinarily long, with a running time of nine hours. Reader Kathy Bates, who has portrayed various King characters in films such as Misery (1990), contributes a beautifully restrained reading. For all popular collections.‘Mark Annichiarico, "Library Journal" (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.