cover image The Dark Man

The Dark Man

Stephen King. Cemetery Dance (, $25 (88p) ISBN 9781587674211

King first conceived of his most famous villain, Randall Flagg, as a college student in the poem featured here. Faceless and ominous, this man is brought to life by illustrator Glenn Chadbourne in this edition of the poem. While Chadbourne's illustrations take center stage%E2%80%94eerie pencil drawings evoke a decrepit world of spiders, gravestones, and abandoned buildings%E2%80%94what is most remarkable about this book is King's poem itself. While famous for his prose, King demonstrates his talent as a writer here in his incredible use of language. Especially considering the young age at which the poem was written, the originality of description, rhythm, and word choice are impressive. The poem, even without the illustrations, is sure to send shivers up your spine, and serves as a wonderfully creepy edition to King's oeuvre. (Aug.)