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May 29, 2018 at 03:25 PM EDT

Finished reading The Outsider? Because there’s another Stephen King book coming your way this year.

The beloved best-selling author will next publish Elevation, a short novella that returns to his Castle Rock setting but strikes a blessedly different tone. Described as a rebuke to our divisive culture, Elevation tells a story that’s joyful, uplifting, and tinged with sadness.

Here’s the official synopsis: “Although Scott Carey doesn’t look any different, he’s been steadily losing weight. There are a couple of other odd things, too. He weighs the same in his clothes and out of them, no matter how heavy they are. Scott doesn’t want to be poked and prodded. He mostly just wants someone else to know, and he trusts Doctor Bob Ellis.

“In the small town of Castle Rock … Scott is engaged in a low-grade — but escalating — battle with the lesbians next door whose dog regularly drops his business on Scott’s lawn. One of the women is friendly; the other, cold as ice. Both are trying to launch a new restaurant, but the people of Castle Rock want no part of a gay married couple, and the place is in trouble. When Scott finally understands the prejudices they face — including his own — he tries to help. Unlikely alliances, the annual foot race, and the mystery of Scott’s affliction bring out the best in people who have indulged the worst in themselves and others.”

King has exclusively shared the Elevation cover with EW, as well as a tasty bite-sized excerpt. Read on below, and pre-order Elevation ahead of its Oct. 30 release here.

Excerpt from Elevation, by Stephen King

Simon and Schuster

Scott Carey knocked on the door of the Ellis condo unit, and Bob Ellis (everyone in Highland Acres still called him Doctor Bob, although he was five years retired) let him in. “Well, Scott, here you are. Ten on the dot. Now what can I do for you?”

Scott was a big man, six-feet-four in his stocking feet, with a bit of a belly growing in front. “I’m not sure. Probably nothing, but . . . I have a problem. I hope not a big one, but it might be.”

“One you don’t want to talk to your regular doctor about?” Ellis was seventy-four, with thinning silver hair and a small limp that didn’t slow him down much on the tennis court.

“Oh, I went,” Scott said, “and got a checkup. Which was overdue. Bloodwork, urine, prostate, the whole nine yards. Everything checked out. It was diabetes I was worried about. WebMD suggested that was the most likely.”

Ellis led him into the living room, where a big bay window overlooked the fourteenth green of the Castle Rock gated community where he and his wife now lived.

“I’m losing weight,” Scott said abruptly. “That’s what’s on my mind. It’s sort of funny, you know. I used to steer clear of the bathroom scale, because these last ten years or so, I haven’t been crazy about the news I got from it. Now I’m on it first thing every morning.”

“I’m sure you know that weight-loss isn’t just a marker for diabetes, Scott, it’s a marker for cancer. Among other things. How much weight are we talking about?”

“Twenty-eight pounds. So far.”


Excerpted from
Elevation by Stephen King. Copyright © 2018 by Stephen King. Reprinted with permission of Scribner, a Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

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