52 signed, lettered, tray cased copies
Howard deserved to die. For years, he abused his wife physically, verbally, and psychologically. Even after the separation, he kept coming back for more.
Carol and her lover, Lee, knew there was only one way to stop Howard for good. They planned every detail, and they thought they had committed the perfect crime.
But a stranger named Wayne witnessed what they did, and he was thrilled by what he saw. Now Wayne wants to be their friend. He wants to share the thrill of murder with them. He wants to take Carol and Lee on a road trip straight to hell so his new friends can enjoy his all-out killing spree that can only end one way…
This edition features a special afterword entitled “On Writing Joyride” by Jack Ketchum.
I don’t believe in omens, but I think you can know when you’re in trouble.
Thus begins Jack Ketchum’s riveting second novel Hide and Seek.
It’s a book about games. Reckless, dangerous games. Games you might even want to play yourself if you’re with the right people. But shouldn’t. Not ever…
Dead River’s a sleepy little town on the coast of Maine without much going for it. The Great Depression hit hard and never let go. Even now, sixty-odd years later, there’s not much to do, not much going on. So that when a trio of friends, rich college kids, arrive there on a forced march with their parents for summer vacation they have to make their own amusements. And they do, in spades.
Dan’s a local and didn’t get a chance to go to college. There was never the money. He works in a lumberyard hauling two-by-fours and furring around all day with a forklift. He’s even more bored than he knows.
When the college kids arrive, that changes.
The most daring of the three is a beautiful, troubled girl named Casey. She’s not opposed to stealing caviar or cars or running around naked in graveyards. For Casey the thrill’s the thing and the riskier the better.
Dan falls for her, hard. And gradually becomes the fourth member of the group — the poor relation.
But games need escalation. It’s a need that finds them at last in an old abandoned house at night, a house reputed to be haunted, where phantom lights burn in broken windows. Where something lurks waiting in the dark…
A contented time in a quiet place for most.
But not for all.
For on a tranquil, tree-lined street, in a dark basement, fourteen-year-old Meg and her little sister Susan are about to learn everything there is to know about the savagery in the human heart.
And an entire neighborhood, young and old alike, will either turn away from the madness, or succumb to it, joining in the slow, sadistic torture of a victim too beautiful and too innocent for her own good. Here, only one young boy will dare to reach out to make an agonizing choice between love and compassion – and violence and evil.
Released as Joyride in the United States.
Wayne keeps a record of offences. The kids who trash his fence, the dog that dumps in his yard, the guys who give him stress in the bar – they’re all in his book. He hasn’t hit back yet, though the urge is strong. He’ll give in one day. He wonders why he hasn’t dared. So far.
Carole doesn’t want to do it but murder seems like the only solution. The only way to solve the problem of her ex – drunken, sadistic, clever. If the courts can’t protect her and the police can’t keep him away, how else will she ever be free?
On the sunny mountainside, above the creek, that’s where Carole has the courage to solve her problem. Her lover, Lee, has the baseball bat but she’s the one with the rock – and the nerve and desperation to crush a man’s skull and pitch him off a mountain.
Wayne sees it all. Every moment. It’s the very best day of his life. Because it points the way down the road for him. The killing road. And the way he plans it, he and Carole and Lee are all going to do a little traveling together…
This edition is slightly different than the original American edition, but not as complete as The Unexpurgated Edition.
From the Afterword to The Unexpurgated Edition (edited to avoid possible spoilers):
“There was one…change I made…for the British paperback.
At the very end of the original, [a character is] in the ambulance, shot up with painkillers and speculating through her haze on whether these people who are treating her are paramedics or doctors. She hoped they were doctors, reads the line.
A few months after the book was published I got a letter from a fan who said he’d enjoyed the read immensely. Until he got to that line.
He went on to say that he was in fact a paramedic and in [her] situation, she’d be far better off in the hands of a trained ambulance crew than with a bunch of doctors. I checked it out and he was right of course. Whoops. I hadn’t done my homework. I wrote back and apologized and thanked him for bringing the error to my attention and promised that if the book ever went into another printing anywhere I’d fix it.
In ’95 the Brits at Headline came along and I did.“
A beautiful New York editor retreats to a quiet Maine beach town –
Nearby, a savage human family lurks in the woods, watching, waiting…
And before too many hours pass, five civilized, sophisticated people will learn just how primitive we all are, and that there are no limits to the will to survive.