Stephen King rarity “THE DARK MAN” to be republished this JulyBooks/Art/Culture,News Ken W. Hanley
For fans of literary legend Stephen King, completing a definitive collection of the author’s work is a daunting task, as many of his early tales remain uncollected or only available as rare self-publications. However, one of the most important of the author’s initial works will be seeing the light of day courtesy of Cemetery Dance Publications, accompanied by all-new artwork by Glenn Chadbourne.
THE DARK MAN, a longform poem originally published in the literary journal Ubris in 1969, has been a much-desired part of King’s literary oeuvre, as it features the first appearance of his villainous mainstay Randall Flagg and has been notoriously hard to find outside of hardcore collection circles. Cemetery Dance issues all 88 pages of the author’s verse July 30 in both a general trade hardcover ($25) and a slipcased version shrink-wraped with a collectible bookmark ($49.95). “This is a unique addition to the King canon,” says Cemetery Dance’s Brian Freeman. “We’ve taken this breathtaking poem and worked closely with acclaimed artist Glenn Chadbourne to bring King’s chilling words to life in a unique way.”
Chadbourne, probably best-known to horror fans for his illustration on BLOODSTAINED OZ, is contributing artwork to every page of this volume. It’s just the latest step in the artist’s affiliation with King, following his contributions to THE SECRETARY OF DREAMS, the 2007 reprint of THE COLORADO KID and the tale “1922” in FULL DARK, NO STARS.
“There was a very specific rhythm to the poem that we wanted to convey through the blending of text and artwork,” Freeman explains. “Chadbourne skillfully used his illustrations to create a new kind of mixed-media story. Feedback from early readers has been fantastic, with some saying they never expected a poem to make their heart race with terror and horror the way the ending of THE DARK MAN does.”
You can check out samples of Chadbourne’s artwork as well as pre-order THE DARK MAN at Cemetery Dance’s official website.