Needful Things by King, Stephen

Needful Things by King, Stephen
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  • Another image of Needful Things by King, Stephen

Needful Things

First Edition

New York: Viking, 1991. 690 pages. A novel set in the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine. The premise is that a demon or perhaps the Devil himself sets up shop where he sells the items people most covet, like a Sandy Koufax baseball card, for absurdly low prices. Mayhem then ensues. ISBN: 9780670839537.

First edition (first printing). A very good copy in a very good dust jacket (scuffing to covers). This copy is inscribed to King's friend and fellow baseball fan, the evolutionary paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould.

Sometimes a book makes your humble cataloguer sad. This is such an instance. Clearly King had great affection for Gould, beyond a shared love of baseball, even if they were passionate about different teams (a rivalry that played out in their books: see Gould, Wonderful Life, footnote on page 285, and the acknowledgements page of King's The Tommyknockers). But alas, Gould left us too soon and his books are now destined for other owners, a situation that Gould, as a book collector, well understood.

The inscription reads, "For Steve and Deborah Gould - with lots of love to [the children] as well. Steve, I know you don't believe in the devil, but I'm sure you DO believe that, if there WAS such a creature, he would undoubtedly ensnare the souls of young boys by offering them Brooklyn Dodgers baseball cards cheap! Love you guys. Steven King. 9/14/91."

This novel was published on September 30, 1991; given that the inscription is dated two weeks earlier, it is almost certainly one of King's author copies. It is hard to imagine that there is a better copy.

Book ID: 194232
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