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DEMON INVADES SMALL ILLINOIS TOWN

By J. Stephen Bolhafner
Published in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Sunday, September 28, 1997 Page 5C


RUNNING WITH THE DEMON
Fantasy Fiction by Terry Brooks
420 pages, Ballantine, $25.95

TERRY BROOKS invades Stephen King territory with "Running With the Demon," a much darker fantasy than anything he's done before. Instead of a far-off magic kingdom, the action takes place in our own very real contemporary world, in a fictional small town that resembles Brooks' real hometown of Sterling, Ill.

Under the surface, though, there are strange things going on in Hopewell. Take the Feeders, for instance, invisible creatures who feed on negative emotion. No one can see them except Nest Freemark and her grandmother. It's because Nest has magic, her grandmother tells her.

But her magic may not be strong enough to fight the demon, whose thirst for destruction is driven by a special agenda not fully revealed until near the end of the book.

There are genuine Brooks touches here. Stephen King would never have thought to include a sylvan, whose cantakerous personality helps provide what little comic relief exists in this book.

A compelling read, moving at a heart-thumping pace, "Running With the Demon" opens a whole new dimension in Brooks' already successful career.


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