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Misery (book) > Lists
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#33 of 35 from Stephen King Bookshelf 1 by
“Of all of King's books, Misery is the one which frightened me the most. The classic story of a sadistic nurse who takes her favorite writer hostage is terrifying and very real.
#4 of 15 from The Best Stephen King Novels by
About this book


In  Misery(1987), as inThe Shining (1977), a writer is trapped in an evil house during a Colorado winter. Each novel bristles with claustrophobia, stinging insects, and the threat of a lethal explosion. Each is about a writer faced with the dominating monster of his unpredictable muse.

Paul Sheldon, the hero of Misery, sees himself as a caged parrot who must return to Africa in order to be free. Thus, in the novel within a novel, the romance novel that his mad captor-nurse, Annie Wilkes, forces him to write, he goes to Africa--a mysterious continent that evokes for him the frightening, implacable solidity of a woman's (Annie's) body. The manuscript fragments he produces tell of a great Bee Goddess, an African queen reminiscent of H. Rider Haggard's She.

He hates her, he fears her, he wants to kill her; but all the same he needs her power. Annie Wilkes literally breathes life into him.

Misery touches on several large themes: the state of possession by an evil being, the idea that art is an act in which the artist willingly becomes captive, the tortured condition of being a writer, and the fears attendant to becoming a "brand-name" bestselling author with legions of zealous fans. And yet it's a tight, highly resonant echo chamber of a book--one of King's shortest, and best novels ever. --Fiona Webster

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ISBN-10: 0451169522
ISBN-13: 978-0451169525
Author: Stephen King
Genre: Literature & Fiction
Publisher: Signet
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