Blaze by Richard Bachman & Stephen King
A Novel

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Although King's flourishes have turned out an entertaining book, it's a pity that he is more serious about being taken seriously as an author. He should have committed himself to writing a truly comic caper.
-LA Times

Synopsis

The last of the Richard Bachman novels, recently recovered and published for the first time. Stephen King's "dark half" may have saved the best for last.

A fellow named Richard Bachman wrote Blaze in 1973 on an Olivetti typewriter, then turned the machine over to Stephen King, who used it to write Carrie. Bachman died in 1985 ("cancer of the pseudonym"), but in late 2006 King found the original typescript of Blaze among his papers at the University of Maine's Fogler Library ("How did this get here?!"), and decided that with a little revision it ought to be published.

Blaze is the story of Clayton Blaisdell, Jr. -- of the crimes committed against him and the crimes he commits, including his last, the kidnapping of a baby heir worth millions. Blaze has been a slow thinker since childhood, when his father threw him down the stairs -- and then threw him down again. After escaping an abusive institution for boys when he was a teenager, Blaze hooks up with George, a seasoned criminal who thinks he has all the answers. But then George is killed, and Blaze, though haunted by his partner, is on his own.

He becomes one of the most sympathetic criminals in all of literature. This is a crime story of surprising strength and sadness, with a suspenseful current sustained by the classic workings of fate and character -- as taut and riveting as Stephen King's The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon.
 

About Richard Bachman & Stephen King

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During the years 1966-1973, Stephen King was actually two men. Stephen King wrote (and sold) horror stories to magazines such as Cavalier and Adam, while Richard Bachman wrote a series of novels that would not be published until the early 1980s and were then collected as The Bachman Books. Bachman died of pseudonym cancer in 1985, shortly after another of his novels, Thinner, was attributed to Stephen King; but a sixth Bachman novel, The Regulators, surfaced in 1995 and was published simultaneously with Stephen King's Desperation, to which it bore a weird resemblance. Blaze -- both brutal and sensitive -- was the last novel written during Bachman's early period. It is his legacy.King's proceeds from Blaze will be donated to The Haven Foundation, which supports freelance artists. Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. His novel 11/22/63 was named a top ten book of 2011 by The New York Times Book Review and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller as well as the Best Hardcover Book Award from the International Thriller Writers Association. He is the recipient of the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. He lives in Bangor, Maine, with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.
 
Published June 12, 2007 by Scribner. 386 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Horror, Literature & Fiction, Children's Books, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Crime, Education & Reference. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Blaze
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LA Times

Below average
Reviewed by Edward Champion on Jun 08 2007

Although King's flourishes have turned out an entertaining book, it's a pity that he is more serious about being taken seriously as an author. He should have committed himself to writing a truly comic caper.

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