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With the "Last Castle Rock Story" King bids a magnificent farewell to the fictional Maine town where much of his previous work has been set. Of grand proportion, the novel ranks with King's best, in both plot and characterization. A new store, Needful Things, opens in town, and its proprietor, Leland Gaunt, offers seemingly unbeatable (read: Faustian) bargains to Castle Rock's troubled citizens. Among them are Polly Chalmers, lonely seamstress whose arthritis is only one of the physical and psychic pains she must bear; Brian Rusk, the 11-year-old boy whose mother is not precisely attentive; and Alan Pangborn, the new sheriff whose wife and son have recently died. These are only three of the half-dozen or so brilliantly drawn people met in the novel's one-month time span. As the dreams of each strikingly memorable character, major and minor, inexorably turn to nightmare, individuals and soon the community are overwhelmed, while the precise nature of Gaunt's evil thrillingly stays just out of focus. King, like Leland Gaunt, knows just what his customers want. 1.5 million first printing; BOMC main selection.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The old horrormaster in top form, this time with a demonic dealer in magic and spells selling his wares to the folks of Castle Rock, scene of several King novels including The Dead Zone, Cujo--and how many others? King locates his hokey Our Town in Maine, but as ever it's really Consumerville, USA, with everyone's life festooned with brand names. The cast is huge and largely grotesque, since King--wearing a tremendous cat's-smile--means to close the book on Castle Rock and blow it off the map in one of his best climaxes since Salem's Lot. Editing here is supreme. King braids perhaps a dozen storylines--with hardly a drop of blood spilled for the first 250 or so pages--into ever briefer takes that climax in a hurtling, storm-ripped holocaust whose symphonic energies fill the novel's last third. Perhaps only five characters stand out: Leland Gaunt, a gentlemanly stranger who opens the Needful Things curiosity shop; his first customer, Brian Rusk, 11, who sells his soul for a rare Sandy Koufax baseball card; practical Polly Chalmers, who runs the You Sew `n' Sew shop, welcomes Gaunt with a devil's-food cake, and buys an amulet to relieve her arthritis; her lover, Sheriff Alan Pangborn, who buys nothing but is haunted by the driving deaths of his wife and son; and Ace Merrill, coke dealer in a bind, who becomes Gaunt's handydevil and gets to drive Gaunt's Tucker, a car that's faster than radar and uses no gas. As he has for hundreds of years, Gaunt sells citizens whatever pricks and satisfies their inmost desires. But the price dehumanizes them, and soon all the townsfolk vent their barest aggressions on each other with cleaver, knife, and gun: Gaunt even opens a sideline of automatic weapons. By novel's end, the whole town is on a hysterical, psychotic mass rampage that floods morgue and hospital with the delimbed and obliterated. Then comes the big bang. Mmmmmmmmmmmm! Leland King's glee, or Steven Gaunt's, or rather--well, the author's--as he rubs his palms over his let's-blow-'em-away superclimax is wonderfully catching. (Book-of-the-Month Main Selection for Fall) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
Needful Things is, occasionally pointedly, about the dangers of greed and materialism. As satire it is far from "comedic" but is very effective. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Drew Rowsome
There are no words that I can think of that can begin to describe Needful Things. This book is one of the Kings best. When it comes to books lilke this Stephan really is the King. Read morePublished on Feb. 26 2006 by Arthur L. Hill
I've only read a few Stephen King novels, and I'm glad I read this one. It is exceptional in its story telling, and characteriszations. Read morePublished on June 26 2004 by barbre
All good things have to come to an end and this one ended with a bang. That was expected. I thought I would miss being able to go back to Castle Rock, which turned me against the... Read morePublished on May 26 2004
In this strange and original story of "Greek tragedy" proportions, the Devil in mortal guise as a respectable gentleman named Mr. Read morePublished on April 1 2004 by I ain't no porn writer
is a great SK novel. The charatchers are interesting and what also makes it more interesting is the storekeeper is how he uses the people of Castle Rock turn on each other. Read morePublished on Sept. 12 2003 by Eric
This is one of Stephen King's best. The book is thick and it sure goes by fast. I read it in two days without really losing sleep either. Read morePublished on Aug. 26 2003 by NoobKitten
This is King at his best. Even if you have seen the movie, still read this book it has significant differences. Read morePublished on July 11 2003 by Nicholas M. Lamarca
This was the best Stephen King book I've ever read, it's about an imp named Lelaund Guant who opens a shop in Castle Rock, and causes the customers to play pranks on others. Read morePublished on June 8 2003 by The Erlkonig