During Comic-Con this summer, author Stephen King helped put on a strange event for a book entitled Charlie The Choo-Choo, which is mentioned in the author’s third novel in his The Dark Tower series, The Waste Lands. The Charlie The Choo-Choo book didn’t actually exist in real life, until the Comic-Con event, where hundreds of fans showed up to snag one of the 150 copies of this “book,” with the “author” Beryl Evans (played by a Los Angeles actress named Allison Davies), signing copies for fans. Today we have our first look inside this book, written by Stephen King himself, under the “Beryl Evans” pen name.
Entertainment Weekly has the front cover for this book and photos of three of the book’s pages. The illustrations of the book were provided by Ned Dameron, who actually provided the illustrations for The Waste Lands, the Dark Tower book where Charlie the Choo-Choo is mentioned. It remains to be seen if the full book will contain any Easter Eggs for fans leading up to The Dark Tower movie’s release next year.
In The Waste Lands book, Charlie the Choo-Choo was purchased by Jake Chambers, played by Tom Taylor in the upcoming movie, at The Manhattan Restaurant of the Mind. The book tells the tale of Charlie the Choo-Choo and Engineer Bob. In the book, Charlie is very friendly and dependable, yet Charlie’s smile is often described as being untrustworthy and sinister. In The Waste Lands novel, Charlie has been compared to Blaine the Mono.
There is a sequence in the book where Roland Deschain (Idris Elba) and his ka-tet are passing through Topeka and come across a train that looks exactly like Charlie the Choo-Choo. Jake nearly faints when seeing this train, swearing to the others that the train somehow flashed his lights at him. Whether or not this scene will happen in the movie itself has yet to be determined.
The highly-anticipated movie adaptation of The Dark Tower also stars Matthew McConaughey as Randall Flagg, Abbey Lee as Tirana, Jackie Earle Haley as Sayre, Michael Barbieri as Timmy and Katheryn Winnick in an unknown role. Nickolaj Arcell} is directing from a script he co-wrote with Akiva Goldsman, Jeff Pinkner and Anders Thomas Jensen. Take a look at these first look photos from Stephen King’s kids book Charlie the Choo-Choo, as we wait for more on The Dark Tower, and visit Entertainment Weekly for the full image gallery.