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by Stephen King and Peter Straub.
REVIEWS: While The Talisman was a straightforward myth in 1980s packaging, Black House is richer and more complex, a fantasy wrapped in a horror story inside a mystery, sporting a clever tangle of references to Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, jazz, baseball, and Kings own Dark Tower saga. Talisman fans will find the sure-footed Jack has worn well--as has the King/Straub writing style, which is much improved with the passage of two decades. --Barrie Trinkle, Amazon.
Some 20 years after the events of King and Straubs The Talisman (1984), Jack Sawyer, its 12-year-old hero, is 35 and retired (thanks to inherited wealth) from being the LAPDs whiz-kid homicide sleuth. He lives near a southwestern Wisconsin town in which a serial killer is abducting young children and, in imitation of early-twentieth-century fiend Albert Fish (see Harold Schechters riveting biography, Deranged, 1990), dismembering and cannibalizing them. Dubbed the Fisherman, the killer comes from the Territories, the parallel world Jack visited when a boy, and possesses a gaga old man to commit its atrocities. Ultimately, it and its boss are after Jack, whom they recognize as a threat, and eventually Jack has to face them down in an abandoned house that is a gateway between this world and the Territories. -- Booklist.
2003 Ballantine, 688 pages. List price $16.00.