A Stephen King original short story featuring an excerpt from 11.22.63, his latest full-length novel.
With the heart of Stand by Me and the genius horror of Christine, Mile 81 is Stephen King unleashing his imagination as he drives past one of those road signs.... At Mile 81 on the Maine Turnpike is a boarded-up rest stop, a place where high-school kids drink and get into the kind of trouble high-school kids have always gotten into. It’s the place where Pete Simmons goes when his older brother heads off to the gravel pit to play ‘paratroopers over the side’. Pete, armed with only the magnifying glass he got for his 10th birthday, finds a discarded bottle of vodka in the boarded up burger shack and drinks enough to pass out. That’s why he doesn’t notice a freshly mud-spattered station wagon (which is strange because there hadn’t been any rain in New England for over a week), which veers into the Mile 81 rest area, ignoring the sign that reads ‘closed, no services’. The driver’s door opens but nobody gets out....
In the bonus story ‘The Dune’, originally published in Granta’s October 2011 horror issue, retired Florida Supreme Court Judge Harvey Beecher tells his lawyer about a mysterious sand dune on an unnamed island a short distance off the Gulf coastline of his family’s property. Harvey first visited the island at the age of 10 in 1932, after his grandfather, a scoundrel and land speculator who’d created the family fortune, told him Blackbeard’s treasure might be buried there. Travelling to the island became a daily addiction for Harvey… and now his lawyer is about to discover the shocking reason why.
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Pint and a Packet of Crisps