Having read the entirety of Stephen King's oeuvre during my teen years, I have very definite ideas of what horror should be. And Imaginary Friend has everything I want: a huge page count, multiple narrators and endless back stories, gruesome visuals, and an epic showdown between good and evil. It all begins when Christopher and his mother move to the small town of Mill Grove. Fleeing a painful past and an abusive relationship, Kate hopes this will be a fresh start for her and her son. But it won't be. Because Christopher is special, he's been chosen, and one day he walks into the woods and disappears. When he comes out six days later, he's got a mission... and a new friend. Although the plot hinges on the supernatural, the characters and their struggles are a reflection of the horrors we face in the real world. Since Chbosky brings the same grace and depth to his second novel as he did to The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Imaginary Friend should appeal to just about everybody. It's been 20 years since we've had a new book from him, but this was worth the wait! Recommended By Lauren P., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Christopher is seven years old.
Christopher is the new kid in town.
Christopher has an imaginary friend.
We can swallow our fear or let our fear swallow us.
Single mother Kate Reese is on the run. Determined to improve life for her and her son, Christopher, she flees an abusive relationship in the middle of the night with her child. Together, they find themselves drawn to the tight-knit community of Mill Grove, Pennsylvania. It's as far off the beaten track as they can get. Just one highway in, one highway out.
At first, it seems like the perfect place to finally settle down. Then Christopher vanishes. For six awful days, no one can find him. Until Christopher emerges from the woods at the edge of town, unharmed but not unchanged. He returns with a voice in his head only he can hear, with a mission only he can complete: Build a tree house in the woods by Christmas, or his mother and everyone in the town will never be the same again.
Twenty years ago, Stephen Chbosky's The Perks of Being a Wallflower made readers everywhere feel infinite. Now, Chbosky has returned with an epic work of literary horror, years in the making, whose grand scale and rich emotion redefine the genre. Read it with the lights on.
"Imaginary Friend is a sprawling epic horror novel that hearkens back to the classics of the 1970s Golden Age, but, like Stranger Things, with a twinkle in its malevolent eye. Enormous, scary fun." Dan Chaon, bestselling author of Ill Will
"Imaginary Friend has been a long time coming. And like a fine Bordeaux, it rewards that wait in countless ways. This is a fearsome, remarkably ambitious novel that breaks through the boundaries of the horror genre to become epic — in all the best senses of the word." Lincoln Child, #1 New York Times bestselling coauthor of the Verses for the Dead and City of Endless Night
"If you aren't blown away by the first fifty pages of Imaginary Friend, you need to get your sense of wonder checked." Joe Hill, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Fireman and NOS4A2
About the Author
Stephen Chbosky is the author of the multi-million-copy bestselling debut novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower. In 2012, Chbosky wrote and directed an acclaimed film adaptation of his novel, starring Logan Lerman, Emma Watson and Ezra Miller. He also directed the acclaimed 2017 film Wonder starring Julia Roberts, Owen Wilson and Jacob Tremblay. Imaginary Friend is Chbosky's long-awaited second novel.