When people talk about Stephen King’s work, it’s inevitable that Misery will come up during the discussion. Perhaps one of the only books I’ve read that has made me scared to walk around my own home, Misery follows Paul Sheldon, an author who, after a car crash, wakes up in the home of one Annie Wilkes, a woman who is Sheldon’s self-described “Number one fan”. Heartbroken that Sheldon has decided to stop writing about one of her favorite characters, she insists he write her a new novel, one that continues the story that she holds so dear to her heart. Her psychotic obsession with Sheldon and his characters means that she will go to any length to get what she wants.
Originally pressed in 1987, Misery is now receiving the first authorized limited edition publication through Suntup Editions. Blessed by King himself, these copies are getting a “no expense spared” treatment. Featuring brand new illustrations by artist Rick Berry and coming in three different editions, Misery is getting a royal treatment.
The prices for the first two editions are fairly reasonable for collectors. The “Artist Gift” edition will run $110 while the “Numbered” edition comes at a somewhat steep $525. Now, I know many of you are thinking that $525 is nowhere even remotely close to “fairly reasonable”. However, it’s the third edition that puts everything into perspective: the “Lettered” edition will cost, and I hope you’re sitting down for this, $3,950. That’s not a typo or a mistake, I assure you. Yes, the third edition will run at nearly $4,000.
So what do each of these editions feature? Let’s break each one down.
Artist Gift Edition:
Signed by Rick Berry, the slipcased Artist Gift edition features a dust jacket with stunning wrap-around artwork by Berry. It is a smyth-sewn binding with full imperial cloth, two-hits stamping on front and spine, and is offset printed on Mohawk Superfine Eggshell paper. The gift edition will be highly limited for a Stephen King book, and is the only edition of the three with the wrap-around dust jacket art.
The Numbered edition is limited to 200 copies, and is signed by Stephen King and Rick Berry. The first 185 copies are for sale and numbered in black. The remaining 15 copies are numbered in red and reserved for private distribution. It is a full Japanese cloth, smyth-sewn binding featuring a blind stamped front cover, and a leather spine label stamped in 22K gold leaf. The edition is printed letterpress on Cranes Lettra Pearl White cotton paper, and housed in a custom clamshell box.
The Lettered edition is limited to 26 copies for sale lettered A-Z, and is signed by Stephen King and Rick Berry. It is printed letterpress on moldmade Arches wove paper with a deckled fore edge, and handbound in full crimson goatskin leather. Endpapers are marbled, and made exclusively for this edition. The binding is sewn and rounded with a hollow back designed to prevent sagging fo the page block.
The edition includes an original frontispiece print pulled from a wood engraving by renowned illustrator and designer Barry Moser. The print is limited to 26 copies and is signed by Barry Moser. The title is made using six original Royal glass typewriter keys which are inset into the cover, and the letter designation is a Royal key inset into the lower back cover.
The book is housed in a handmade walnut wood box designed to resemble an original Royal Model 10 packing crate. The case is laser engraved, and features a black suede-lined book bed.
Pre-orders for each edition will go live on February 12 at 8am PST on Suntup’s website. The release date will be August 8, 2018.