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Black House

(The Talisman #2)

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  51,928 ratings  ·  1,624 reviews
Twenty years ago, a boy named Jack Sawyer travelled to a parallel universe called The Territories to save his mother and her Territories "twinner" from a premature and agonizing death that would have brought cataclysm to the other world. Now Jack is a retired Los Angeles homicide detective living in the nearly nonexistent hamlet of Tamarack, WI. He has no recollection of ...more
Paperback, 688 pages
Published September 30th 2003 by Ballantine Books (first published September 15th 2001)
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Simina I actually read this before The Talisman because that's the order in which the publishing house translated them, beats me why. So I read The Talisman…moreI actually read this before The Talisman because that's the order in which the publishing house translated them, beats me why. So I read The Talisman after and made a lot of new sense but I still got most of it reading this before that. I do advice you read The Talisman before, not only because you'll understand more of BH, but because The Talisman is an amazing read as well, one of King's finest books.
Long days and pleasant nights to you!(less)
Rachel Hey! This might not be the info you're looking for, but I ended up reading Black House between Song of Susannah and The Dark Tower, since I had read…moreHey! This might not be the info you're looking for, but I ended up reading Black House between Song of Susannah and The Dark Tower, since I had read The Talisman earlier & couldn't get my hands on The Dark Tower right away, and I think it ended up adding a lot to the reading experience of the series actually? I think that there are three main reasons for that:

1. chronologically, BH exists between SoS and TDT, so it fit in nicely
2. this book has the same sort of conceptual themes & connections that the whole last half of the DT series has, so it didn't really interrupt the flow of the series for me
3. it added a lot of world-building, which I always really enjoy in a series, but which I think it was best to have before the final book, since it's SUCH a good finale and I wouldn't have wanted to add anything after that, and also because it adds to the overall sense of epic-ness the whole series builds up to

Hope this can help! Happy reading :)(less)
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Average rating 4.01  · 
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 ·  51,928 ratings  ·  1,624 reviews

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Dec 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I hate that the first thing you see of a review is the number of stars it's given.

Someone's feeling about a book is not easily reduced to a five-point scale. And even once that is done, how do I know what five stars means to you? How do you know what five stars means to me?

For me, a five star book is a book that I believe is worth the time and energy you're going to spend reading it.

If, (and this is key) you're into that sort of book. (Horror, Mystery, Fantasy, Hardcore Gothic Gypsy
Johann (jobis89)
"What you love, you must love all the harder because someday it will be gone."

Twenty years ago, a young boy named Jack Sawyer travelled to a parallel universe called The Territories to save his mother's life. Now a retired homicide detective, Jack has no memory of these adventures. There is a sick serial killer on the loose, murdering and eating children, and the local chief of police begs Jack to help his force catch him.

I love Stephen King. I love serial killers. Combine the two and you have a
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is just further proof that Stephen King is a master author. Lots of action in this 2001 - 500+ page thriller and Frank Muller is incomparable as narrator. 9 of 10 stars
May 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
(This review was originally published in the Washington Post in 2001.)

Black House is a novel of slippage. We learn about slippage (a secondary definition of which, we are told, helpfully, in the text, is the feeling that things in general have just gotten, or will shortly get, worse) at the beginning of the book as we travel, invisibly through the town of French Landing, Wisconsin, early in the morning, winding up in an abandoned shack where “limp flypaper ribbons hung invisible within the fur
Sep 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Each time I pick up a Stephen King book, I am struck by the different writing voice I find. Truth is, I had expected it with Black House, sort of, being co-written with Peter Straub, and yet I was struck all the same. King/Straub narrate much of this tale from a moving bird’s-eye perspective, floating in and out of each character’s stance and location, with a twinge of humor on the side. They don’t even try to hide the fact that this account has been written in a book, by two writers even. I ...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Black House, Stephen King
Black House is a horror novel by American writers Stephen King and Peter Straub. Published in 2001, it is the sequel to The Talisman. This is one of King's numerous novels, which also include Hearts in Atlantis and Insomnia, that tie in with the Dark Tower series. After the events of The Talisman, Jack Sawyer has repressed the memories of his adventures in The Territories and his hunt for the Talisman as a twelve-year-old boy, though the residue of these events has
It's been a long time since I read this book. I remember reading it when it first came out, when I was in my late teens, and really enjoying it, but it's clear that I forgot sooo much about this book. I remember this one having more to do with the Dark Tower - but just how much, and in what detail surprised me. I almost wish that I hadn't read it now, that I'd waited until later on in my upcoming Dark Tower re-read with my bookclub, so I could read it at a more appropriate place within the Dark ...more
Edward Lorn
Jun 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars rounded up. Spoiler-free review. Spoiler discussion, Thursday Theorist episode, and spoiler-free review coming to YouTube this week.

Not being a fantasy fan, is it any wonder that I like this book more than its predecessor The Talisman? This one is far more engaging and interesting to me due to the characters and setting, not to mention it's written in one of my favorite styles: third-person omniscient. Not many books are written in this style anymore. An editor once told me it's
Janie Johnson
Wow this book was, simply put, a mess and was very painful to read. Considering I totally enjoyed the Talisman, I expected this book to be just as mind capturing as its predecessor. I was very disappointed in just about the whole story. So it turned out to be 'just ok' for me.

The first half was drawn out and very wordy. The coming together of all the characters was quite confusing as well. It seemed to take half of the book before the story even got remotely interesting.

It would get good and
Jul 06, 2008 rated it did not like it

I loved The Talisman. I think I read it when I was 13 or 14. It was a great story about a boy who could cross worlds, and took on a quest to save his dying mom. There were scary parts, but nothing too bad. Also, the line between King's writing and Straub's writing was pretty blurred. Either they shared the load, or one of them wrote while the other edited. I dunno, I could only hear one voice.

Years later, I listened to the audiobook and it was still great.

Black House is the sequel to The

In the early eighties, Stephen King and Peter Straub embarked on the ultimate coming-of-age tale. The Talisman easily solidified the collaboration's super status. Then, nearly two decades later, they returned to their literary roots. Black House portrays a different Jack Sawyer, now a semi-retired Los Angeles detective. He won't remain there much longer, though. By requesting his expertise in a major case, a colleague-turned-friend leads him to Wisconsin, where his life will be irrevocably
Wally Flangers
Jul 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It’s very rare for me to give a book a 5 star rating, but like “The Talisman”, I absolutely loved “Black House”…. This was, however, completely shocking for me because I absolutely hated the first 40 to 60 pages and was wondering how I was going to make it through 625 pages if it kept on going the way it was. The opening chapter, especially, had WAY TOO MANY character introductions and details of the town with unnecessary back stories of every store in the area for my brain to process. But once ...more
Jul 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I tried to pace myself while I read this delicious and thoroughly enjoyable hybrid of thriller/horror/fantasy storytelling. I didn’t want to finish it too quickly and have the magik of The Territories that glimmers off the pages, leave me sooner than necessary. If you are a fan of the Dark Tower series, you should read this as it’s connected.
I absolutely loved this book. It's funny, because I picked it up immediately after reading The Talisman, and at first I was put off by the shift in tone and feel of this one. I wanted more Talisman style fantasy adventure, with the lovable young Jack Sawyer. What I got was a cold, detached, present-tense narrative that watched everything from above and showed a landscape that was totally out of place with the book I had just finished. This is supposed to be a sequel!

But am I ever glad I stuck
Nandakishore Varma
Sep 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
A worthy follow-up to the Talisman: you get to see another child protagonist of King (Jack Sawyer, like Danny Torrance in Doctor Sleep) fighting a fresh set of demons as a grown-up.
Ashley Daviau
Jul 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was one of the first King books I read as a teen and I read it not knowing it was the sequel to The Talisman. Now that I’ve read The Talisman and reread Black House, it’s like all the puzzle pieces finally fit together. I loved Black House but reading it again with all the missing pieces filled in made me love it all that much more. There’s something about this story that just gets under my skin and really creeps me the fuck out!
Lena Puro
Mar 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is actually a sequel to "The Talisman" written with Peter Straub. Quite long like most of King's books, but I always enjoy the ride. Following Jack Sawyer's investigative talents (who kind of doesn't really want to get involved) we find ourselves in a small town where children are disappearing, apparently being eaten. Jack befriends the town cop, some bikers, and begins to unravel the "other" world that seems to blend with "French Landing" with its token crazies, crows, and lurid old men. ...more
May 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: best-reads
Jack used to be a coppice-man and he is now settling into a new home in Wisconsin. He has been having strange dreams, no Speedy or flipping over for many years now he is trying to deal with the present.
Jack is eventually forced out of retirement as a Coppiceman on trail of the Fisherman, flipping over again but to where? What does Speedy and black crow feathers have to do with the case? This is an engrossing page-turner written in a more faster momentum than The Talisman I am loving the adult
I don't even know what to say about this book, except for negative things. Not only did I not finish this book, but I am left completely disappointed in it. I was expecting the same fuel The Talisman had for me, which I really, really enjoyed. Boy, was I disappointed. Not only was the storyline disappointing, the writing for me, was a disaster in the slow as molasses department.

I was excited about reading this with the friends I read it with, but now, I am left with really nothing nice to say
Jun 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I actually enjoyed this a little more than The Talisman. However, I would say that if you did not like The Talisman, you may not enjoy this one either. It does have a darker, more horror-like feel to it. Overall, I enjoyed it. Liked getting back to see Jack Sawyer. I'm Looking forward to the third book, if it is ever written, although I probably would want to read the Dark Tower series before I read it. Overall, I would say 3.5/5 stars rounded up.
Lauryn April
Mar 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I've read a number of Stephen King's books, enough to consider him one of my favorite authors; and out of everything I've read by him I enjoyed this, along with The Talisman, the most. This has encouraged me to start looking at some of Peter Straub's work as well; however I have yet to do so at this time. What this book has done is inspire me to get into his Dark Tower series, which I had been avoiding doing for some time because I'd heard that it was slow getting into. If that series has ever ...more
Abbie | ab_reads
3.5 stars

Unlike The Talisman, this collaboration between my beloved King and Peter Straub fell a little flat for me. I'm quite upset, this is my first less than 4 star King!

I am not going to list all the things I didn't like about this book because I don't particularly like putting negative reviews out there, as I don't want people to not read the book and form their own opinions!! I will just say, for the negative parts, I did not like the narrative style, I didn't connect with Jack as much as
Apr 04, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one who loved The Talisman
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
Stephen King and Peter Straub apparently decided that, since their last collaboration was so great, they would try to follow it with an astounding book that broke every single writing rule in existence. I believe the effort is a prime example of why those rules were made in the first place. Amen.
Jun 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dude, over twelve-hundred other people have posted their thoughts about this book here, people like Gaiman and Rothfuss, and I'm sure I can't think of anything that hasn't already been stated multiple times, and far more eloquently.... so: I liked it, but I liked the first one better. The end.
Apr 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: horror/fantasy/thriller
Recommended to Jason by: SK Bibliography
Favorite new book read in 2019

Finally, the Rock has finished all of Stephen King's novels... Well, I don't know if the Rock has or not, but I have! I intentionally left this one for last because I thought it would suck. I thought it would suck because The Talisman sucked and this is the sequel. Boy, was I wrong. It's a shame I gave this so much unwarranted contempt prior to investigation, but it's also nice to go out on a five star read. Well done Messrs. King and Straub.

Allow me another
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, king-reads
The weirdest thing about this and The Talisman is Peter Straub's involvement, as the books are so completely entrenched in the Stephen King universe - especially this one!
The beams are breaking, the end of the world could be nigh, Roland as formed a new Ka-tet... meanwhile in French Landing someone is kidnapping, eating(!) and killing children and the local authorities and FBI have no clue... enter all grown up since The Talisman and a retired hero cop, Jack Sawyer!
A quintessential King (and
Bill Khaemba
from the start I wanted to burn this book but My God it was worth my patience my God!

Long live Stephen King
Aug 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can’t believe I’ve waited this long before reading. I really enjoyed catching up with Jack Sawyer.
Larry Chambers
Dec 09, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
[I wrote this review in late 2001 for shortly after reading Black House for the first time.]

Hello, My Name Is TreeRider and I’m a Stephen King-aholic.

If you’re a casual Stephen King (or Peter Straub) reader, or just a fan, this book may disappoint you. Likewise if you’re expecting further adventures of Jack Sawyer in the Territories. Jack spends very little time in the Territories in Black House, and most of that comes near the end of the book. I prepped myself for Black House by
May 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, 2010, horror
Basic Plot: A retired police detective must solve a murder and remember events forgotten from his own childhood to do so.

This was a hard book to read at first. The issue at stake is a serial killer who goes after children, small ones. As the mother of a small child, you can understand why it was a bit hard to read. I found it easier to read toward the middle, and the ending practically flew.

This story picks up about 20 years after The Talisman leaves off. Jack Sawyer is now in his 30s and is a
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Stephen Edwin King was born the second son of Donald and Nellie Ruth Pillsbury King. After his father left them when Stephen was two, he and his older brother, David, were raised by his mother. Parts of his childhood were spent in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where his father's family was at the time, and in Stratford, Connecticut. When Stephen was eleven, his mother brought her children back to Durham, ...more

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The Talisman (2 books)
  • The Talisman (The Talisman, #1)
“Ka is a friend to evil as well as good. It embraces both.” 14 likes
“Case closed, game over, zip up your fly.” 10 likes
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