Gerald's Game Art
Works / Novels

Gerald's Game

Gerald's Game Art


May 1992

Available Format(s)

Hardcover / Paperback / Audio


Viking Press

Gerald and Jessie Burlingame have gone to their summer home on a warm weekday in October for a romantic interlude. After being handcuffed to her bedposts, Jessie tires of her husband's games, but when Gerald refuses to stop she lashes out at him with deadly consequences. Still handcuffed, she is trapped and alone. Painful memories from her childhood bedevil her. Her only company is a hungry stray dog and the sundry voices that populate her mind. As night comes, she is unsure whether it is her imagination or if she has another companion: someone watching her from the corner of her dark bedroom.


From the Flap

On a warm weekday in October, Jessie and Gerald Burlingame are alone in the bedroom of their Maine summer house, playing a game that isn't listed in Hoyle's. But suddenly, as Jessie hears the click of the second handcuff locking her to the bedposts and sees her husband looming over her, a nerve-snap of recognition tells her that this time Gerald is playing for keeps. Her next move is furious, violent, and, she is shocked to discover, deadly. Giving up control is scary enough; it is terrifying when there is no one left to give it to.

Except that Jessie is not alone. Over the next twenty-eight hours, trapped in a lake-side house that has become a prison, Jessie will come face-to-face with all the things she has ever feared, and the unlatched back door banging fretfully in the breeze is an open invitation to horrors she has never imagined. Inside the darkening bedroom, shadows gather in mute menace, while inside Jessie's head a taunting chorus of voices whispers and shrieks: "Women alone in the dark are like open doors . . . and if they cry out for help, who knows what dread things may answer?"

Stephen King knows. Nothing he has written before will prepare readers for the challenges of Gerald's Game. It's a fiendishly imagined version of No Exit. It's a nerve-racking excavation of the deepest layers of a woman's fear and courage. It's our foremost literary terrorist exploring what happens when the ordinary routine of one woman's life is suddenly eclipsed by the irrational. Jessie Burlingame's nerves are about to be strenuously tested. So, Reader, are yours.


Hide List Show List
The dog that came into house while Jessie was trapped
?, Barry
Brother of Olivia
?, Joan
Grandmother of Jessie Mahout
?, Katherine
Jessie's great aunt
?, Olivia
raped by her brother Barry, and abused by his friends.
Adams, David
Worked with Tom Mahout
Ashlocke, Richie
Friend of Jessie Mahout
Aucoin, Karen
Told Jessie that French kissing can give you a baby in the mouth
Bergeron, Polly
Said that Dick Sleefort went to A.A.
Brooks, Jamie
Golfing friend of Gerald Burlingame
Bunyan, Paul
Folk hero mentioned by Jessie.
Burlingame, Gerald
Corporate lawyer husband of Jessie.
Burlingame, Goodwife
One of the names that are in Jessie Burlingame's head.
Burlingame, Jessie Angela
Wife of Gerald
Callighan, Nora
Friend and counselor of Jessie Burlingame
Claiborne, Dolores
Although not mentioned by name, she is described as looking down a boarded up well on July 20, 1963, during the eclipse.
Cline, Caroline
Was at William Mahout's party.
Cobb, Mr.
Mahout's gardener until 1964
Cohen, William
Senator who invited the Burlingames to a party
Corson, Duane
Friend of Jessie Mahout.
Dahl, Mrs.
Cleaning lady for the Burlingame's house on the lake
Dakin, Lonnie
Helped after Jessie's escape from the house
Delguidance, Tommy
Jessie almost slept with him in 1985
Dunn, Bill
Caretaker of the house on the lake
Dunninger, ?
Was once the boss of Tom Mahout
Eggart, Jimmy
Retired CPA.
Francis, Anne
Had a beauty mark below a corner of her mouth.
Gilette, Adrienne
Old lady who slapped Jessie's hand when she reached for the last cookie
Hagen, Bobby
Took Jessie to the senior prom
Harrelson, John
Did the autopsy on Gerald
Henderson, Mrs.
Freshman adviser of Jessie Mahout
Hough, Tammy
Friend of Jessie Mahout
It The name that Jessie thought was after her. It was not Pennywise, but instead
a more human Raymond Joubert
Joubert, Raymond Andrew
Desecrated dead bodies and stole their jewelry. Jessie called him "It"
Laglan, Fred
Golfing friend of Gerald Burlingame
Landis, Megan
Jessie's housekeeper
LaPointe, John
Castle County Deputy
Lessard, Cindy
Knew about male semen and called it "spunk"
Magliore, Dr.
Looked after Jessie's hand after she escaped
Mahout, Jessie
Daughter of Tom and Sally. Maiden name of Jessie Burlingame
Mahout, Maddy
Sister of Jessie
Mahout, Sally
Mother of Maddy, William and Jessie.
Mahout, Tom
Father of Maddy, William and Jessie.
Mahout, William
Brother of Jessie
Milheron, Brandon
Worked with Gerald at the law firm.
Neary, Ruth
College roommate of Jessie.
Neidermeyer, ?
Neighbors on the lake of the Burlingames
Paige, Mrs.
Childhood piano teacher of Jessie
Pangborn, Alan J.
Castle Rock sheriff
Petrie, Miss
Jessie's second grade teacher
Ridgewick, Norris
Castle County Sheriff
Rittenhouse, Carol
Married name of Carol Symonds
Sleefort, Dick
Friend of the Mahout family.
Soames, Freida
Lived across the road from the Burlingames
Steinham, Gloria
Mentioned by Jessie
Stevenson, Laurel
Counselor with Nora Callighan
Sutlin, Catherine
Daughter of Charles.
Sutlin, Charles
The father of Catherine.
Symonds, Carol
Friend of Jessie Burlingame. Maiden name of Carol Rittenhouse
Teagarden, ?
Police constable who killed Prince
Timmel, Susie
Friend of Jessie Burlingame
Wertz, Mrs.
First grade teacher of Jessie Mahout
Wilson, Kendall
Hired Jessie for her first teaching job
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