Stephen King didn’t look too far to find his co-author for the forthcoming novel, Sleeping Beauties: The horror master wrote it with his son, Owen King. (Not to be confused with another of King’s literary-minded sons, Joe Hill.)
The book, set in a small Appalachian town in the near future, centers on an intriguing phenomenon happening to women when they sleep. According to the official summary, as they slumber, women “become shrouded in a cocoon-like gauze. If they are awakened, if the gauze wrapping their bodies is disturbed or violated, the women become feral and spectacularly violent; and while they sleep, they go to another place.” And the men, left behind, become “increasingly primal.” But when one woman, Evie, appears to be unaffected by this sleep-cocoon, it remains to be seen whether she’s an evil being, a medical anomaly, or perhaps something else entirely.
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EW is thrilled to reveal the eerie cover and an exclusive sneak peek inside the book, below. Sleeping Beauties hits shelves Sept. 26.
Excerpt from Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and Owen King
Lila followed the tracks up a rise, then down into the sort of narrow dip that country fellows like Willy Burke called a brake or a holler, then up another hill. Here the trees were thicker — scrub pines fighting for space and sunlight. The webby stuff hung from some of the branches. She took a few more pictures with her phone and pushed on toward the power pylons and the bright sunlight ahead. She ducked under a low-hanging branch, stepped into the clearing, and just stared. For a moment all her tiredness was swept away by amazement.
Lila stood frozen at the edge of the clearing, her neck craned, staring upward. Flocks of moths fluttered around her, brown in the shade, seeming to turn an iridescent gold in the late afternoon sunshine.
She had read somewhere that the tallest tree on earth — a redwood — was just under four hundred feet high. The tree in the center of the clearing looked taller than that, and it was no redwood. It was like no tree she’d ever seen.
Excerpted from SLEEPING BEAUTIES by Stephen King and Owen King. Copyright © 2017 by Stephen King and Owen King. Reprinted with permission of Scribner, a Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.