Stephen King is publishing a new thriller with Hodder in August 2021, Billy Summers. The book–about a unique hitman, "a good guy in a bad job”–has been billed as “part war story, part love letter to small town America and the people who live there”.
Due for release in hardback, e-book and audiobook on 3rd August 2021, the deal for British Commonwealth rights was made by Hodder & Stoughton c.e.o. Jamie Hodder-Williams and Chuck Verrill, of Darhansoff & Verrill.
The book is described as being “about love, luck, fate, and a complex hero with one last shot at redemption”.
Its synopsis reads: “Billy Summers is a man in a room with a gun. He’s a killer for hire and the best in the business. But he’ll do the job only if the target is a truly bad guy. And now Billy wants out. But first there is one last hit. Billy is among the best snipers in the world, a decorated Iraq war vet, a Houdini when it comes to vanishing after the job is done. So what could possibly go wrong? How about everything.”
Philippa Pride, Stephen King’s editor, said: “The ultimate storyteller, Stephen King yet again sets his talents in a new direction with thrilling suspense novel which will also delight readers of both The Institute and The Outsider. Billy Summers is a unique hitman, and I can’t wait for readers to meet him.”
The publication of Billy Summers follows King’s 2020 collection of four long stories If It Bleeds and the release last month of a nine-part TV adaptation of The Stand starring Whoopi Goldberg, Alexander Skarsgard and James Marsden.
Through Nielsen BookScan, King has sold 9.6 million books since 1998, for £72m. The Institute, published in September 2019, sold 95,107 copies in hardback and 92,217 in paperback, excluding lockdown-era figures.