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The Talisman [Turtleback]

Stephen King
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (235 customer reviews)

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Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition --  
Hardcover CDN $29.47  
Turtleback, January 1991 --  
Paperback --  
Mass Market Paperback CDN $11.23  
MP3 CD, Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Unabridged CDN $16.60  

Book Description

January 1991
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
. . . .
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Description

From Library Journal

The first (1984) collaboration between horror/fantasy writers King and Straub, this book has been reissued in multiple formats to coincide with the publication of its sequel, Black House. In The Talisman, 12-year-old Jack Sawyer takes on a quest in this and a parallel world, the "Territories," to acquire a mystical talisman that will save the life of his dying mother and her "twinner," the Queen of the Territories. Jack "flips" back and forth between worlds during his journey, finding his way through and past representatives of good and evil in both. Award-winning reader Frank Muller continues his long string of superlative performances. This program will generate lots of demand a must for current fiction collections. Also available in the newer, highly compressed MP3-CD format, which requires a CD player that is MP3-compatible or a computer with CD-ROM drive and MP3 player software loaded. Kristen L. Smith, Loras Coll. Lib., Dubuque, IA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


The Washington Post

New York Daily News
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just as good the second time.... Feb. 27 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
One of my faves in King 's collection. Nothing like a Quest to save the worlds! Looking forward to starting Black House...again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Tale of Fantasy Jan. 6 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
What a great book, I did think however it was quite longer than it could have been with all the little obsticles Jack has to overcome, but I guess it just adds to his quest. It was a great story, check it out if you want something to keep u busy for a while and for a great book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who Plays these Changes? May 27 2004
By A. Hart
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Of all of King's books, including the Dark Tower series, this one is my favorite. Once I got through the first few chapters, I was captivated. Something about the mythic atmosphere of this book, and the beautiful eeriness of the Territories world, did something to me. Jack Sawyer is half Tom Sawyer and half Frodo Baggins, a boy traveling across America because he must, even though he's afraid. My favorite character in this story was Wolf, an innocent and simple-minded teenage werewolf who accompanies Jack on part of his journey, and who is symbolic of what our world is capable of doing to the good world that we have left behind.
This book is good for everyone. Even if you are not a big King (or Straub) fan, I am sure that many people will consider this to be the exception.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good. But Loses Steam halfway through May 17 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Jack Sawyer is a precocious 12 year old who, while visiting a Coney-Island like resort town, meets an elderly African American janitor named (Speedy) who tells him of a fictional country called the territories. Speedy informs him that if he drinks a magic wine he can 'flip' into the territories, a fictional world where his mother is Queen.
Jack believes Speedy, and goes on a quest to save his mother from his father's evil ex-partner and the ravages of cancer.
I really enjoyed the first three-quarters of the Talisman. I liked the character of Wolf. But after awhile I found the writing became repetitive. I felt Jack was too mature to be 12. I also found his friend: Richard to be very annoying. Richard whines more than any character ever created by Anne Rice. Plus he was useless. Also, the ending was too surreal for me to find very interesting. I think the threat of Sloat could've been resolved in a different way.
Peeves? What's with all Phallic imagery? It seems like every rock and tree is described as looking like an erect (you know what). This was done WAY too much. Surely the author could come up with some other less Freudian adjective?
Overall, while this book started off well, it quickly lost steam. Would recommend for diehard fans.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a Stephen King fan April 14 2004
Format:Audio Cassette
I just keep trying but I just can't seem to like him. I always felt like his books could be good if they were edited down to about 1/3 their original length. I had just about given up when a friend recommended this to me.
It does have some of that excess "stuff" that King writes, but for the most part, it is a highly engaging, richly rewarding, heartfelt story which did not fail to keep my interest. I won't review the plot since the Amazon review and many other reviewee's will give you trailer. I will only mention that the characters are filled out and believable, the plot is entertaining and suspenseful, and the overall book rocks just a little. Don't let the author's name fool you. If you've tried Stephen King and found him wanting, try this book. Both it, and it's sequel are well worth the read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My Favorite Novel ever Written!! April 12 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
As you can see from the Rating and the Title for this review I thought this was a great book. Ok. This is a large 700 page epic that is somewhat like the Lord of The Rings but it is MUCH different than that. At first when I picked it up I was worried about if I would hate it or like it. A lot of people said to me that you might not like it because it is a fantasy story and a lot of other people did not like it.
This is not a horror story, but it is a fantasy story yet it has some horror elements because King wrote part of it. In the genre category I would say it is fantasy/horror/drama. As most epics it has some drama. What I loved about this novel is the interesting touch of Peter Straub's terrific writing, but also my favorite aspect of it is how there is cliffhanger after cliffhanger. Most would say that a 700 page epic must contain a lot talk and unneeded material. That is not true here. Talisman is just pure story after page 90 or so. Also by the final scene of this book I was so attached with the characters that I could not let them go. The ending was not really sad but it was "beautiful", so I nearly cried(It is hard to make me cry).
I will give a summary with as much detail as possible but with no spoilers. It starts off with a boy named Jack Sawyer. Jack's mom is dying from the "Black Death" or Cancer. To add to his troubles his Dad died a few years earlier, and, guess what?
Jack is only 12 years old. Poor kid. While Lily Cavanaugh(Jack's Mom), Queen of the B's is dying with Cancer in a New Hampshire Resort with her only son, Jack meets someone mysterious on the beach near an amusement park. His name is Speedy Parker. Jack eventually spills out that his mother is dying and that he obviously is very sad.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great pairing April 1 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
While this is a departure for both authors, the mixture of styles is both perfect and exciting. From page one until the end, you will be immersed in Jack's world.
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