Cell: A Novel
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The next call you take could be your last in this terrifying #1 New York Times bestseller by Stephen King—soon to be a major motion picture starring Samuel L. Jackson and John Cusack.
There’s a reason cell rhymes with hell. On October 1, God is in His heaven, the stock market stands at 10,140, most of the planes are on time, and Clayton Riddell, an artist from Maine, is almost bouncing up Boylston Street in Boston. He’s just landed a comic book deal that might finally enable him to support his family by making art instead of teaching it. He’s already picked up a small (but expensive!) gift for his long-suffering wife, and he knows just what he’ll get for his boy Johnny. Why not a little treat for himself? Clay’s feeling good about the future.
That changes in a hurry. The cause of the devastation is a phenomenon that will come to be known as The Pulse, and the delivery method is a cell phone. Everyone’s cell phone. Clay and the few desperate survivors who join him suddenly find themselves in the pitch-black night of civilization’s darkest age, surrounded by chaos, carnage, and a human horde that has been reduced to its basest nature…and then begins to evolve.
There’s really no escaping this nightmare. But for Clay, an arrow points home to Maine, and as he and his fellow refugees make their harrowing journey north they begin to see crude signs confirming their direction. A promise, perhaps. Or a threat…
it. The porch was flooded with brilliant morning sunshine. It seemed to burn on the boards. “Alice, be careful!” Clay said. “Be—” But she had stopped. She was just looking. Then Tom was standing beside her, almost exactly the same height. Seen that way, they could have been brother and sister. Neither of them took any pains at all to avoid being seen. “Holy fucking shit,” Tom said. He sounded as if the wind had been knocked out of him. Beside him, Alice began to cry. It was the sort of
with, but once he started covering bodies, where would it end? Where? With Sharon? With his son? “God forbid,” he whispered, but he doubted that God would simply because he asked. He lowered the lantern and followed the dancing glow of flashlights downstairs to Tom and Alice. 21 They both wore belts with large-caliber handguns in the holsters, and these were automatics. Tom had also slung an ammunition bandolier over his shoulder. Clay didn’t know whether to laugh or start crying again.
beginning of the 21st century.” —The Denver Post Thank you for purchasing this Scribner eBook. * * * Sign up for our newsletter and receive special offers, access to bonus content, and info on the latest new releases and other great eBooks from Scribner and Simon & Schuster. CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP or visit us online to sign up at eBookNews.SimonandSchuster.com Contents Epigraph The Pulse Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter 6 Chapter 7
Clay sat down. There was no sign of the computer whiz now; if Alice looked eleven with her ponytail and sunburn, Jordan had regressed to nine. “Jordan,” Clay said. “Your dream . . . your nightmare. Do you remember it?” “It’s going away now,” Jordan said. “They had us up on stands. They were looking at us like we were . . . I don’t know, wild animals . . . only they said—” “That we were insane.” Jordan’s eyes widened. “Yeah!” Clay heard footfalls behind him as Tom came down the stairs. Clay
The lunatic roared and snatched at the little man’s foot. He would have pulled the little guy over, then perhaps into a crushing embrace, had Clay not seized his new acquaintance by the shoulder and pulled him away. “He’s got my shoe!” the little man yelped. Behind them, two more cars crashed. There were more screams, more alarms. Car alarms, fire alarms, hearty clanging burglar alarms. Sirens whooped in the distance. “Bastard got my sh—” Suddenly a policeman was there. One of the responders