Welcome to episode 3 of King of the Dark, our special series celebrating and exploring the worlds of Stephen King. Every week on this summer-long series we're opening a different door in the haunted mansion of Stephen King's imagination. This week on the program our regular guests Liz Braswell and Louis Peitzman join B&N's Bill Tipper to talk about King's 1979 novel The Dead Zone
. It's the story of Johnny Smith, whose strange clairvoyant abilities bring him into a confrontation with a threat to the fate of the entire world — a threat only he can perceive. We'll talk about its political obsessions, including a cameo by a future U.S. President, the way it looks to nuclear war as the ultimate horror, and how it once again takes us into the territory of a classic horror short story.
We're also joined by special guest Linda Holmes, the host of NPR's Pop Culture Happy Hour
and author of the new novel Evvie Drake Starts Over
: she dropped in to talk about her affection for Stephen King's short stories, when he's at his most "I wonder what would happen if..."