The Book of Counted Sorrows

The Book of Counted Sorrows was originally a nonexistent book "quoted" in many of Dean Koontz's books. Koontz subsequently wrote a book of poetry by the same title.[1]

2001 ebook

Non-existent bookEdit

For many years Koontz fans everywhere searched for this elusive book.[6 ] Many librarians were frustrated in their attempts to locate it,[1] because it did not exist. This was confirmed by a librarian from Cedar Rapids Public Library who corresponded with Koontz regarding this mysterious book.[citation needed] Koontz himself stated that he received up to 3,000 letters per year inquiring about it.[1]

In a letter dated August 10, 1992, Koontz stated:

Actually, there is no such book. I made it up. The way you made up footnote sources for fabricated facts in high-school English reports. Oh, come on, yes, you did. Sometimes, when I need a bit of verse to convey some of the underlying themes of a section of a novel, I can't find anything applicable, so I write my own and attribute it to this imaginary tome. I figured readers would eventually realize THE BOOK OF COUNTED SORROWS was my own invention, and I never expected that one day librarians and booksellers would be writing from all over the country, asking for help in tracking down this rare and mysterious volume![2]

Koontz went on to say that he would publish such a book in a few years, when he had enough verses to fill a volume.[citation needed] He included a history of the poems in the beginning of the book, followed by the poems, some having never been in any of his books.[1] According to Shannon Presley of Harvest Books, "Koontz himself wrote the poems, attributed to a Stephen can find the collected poems at".[citation needed]

Second non-existent bookEdit

In the beginning of a very few books (such as Odd Thomas), Koontz quotes from The Book of Counted Joys.[citation needed]

Actual bookEdit

In 2001, The Book of Counted Sorrows was published in an e-book format offered exclusively through Barnes & Noble;[3] It was the first book published in Barnes & Noble's launch of its first-ever list of books from its newly formed electronic-publishing division, Barnes & Noble Digital, and "quickly became's best-selling e-books of the year."[4] Barnes & Noble Digital's premier 2001 edition is no longer available.[citation needed]

Later that year, Charnel House published two limited editions of the book: a 1250-copy numbered edition and a 26-copy lettered edition.[5] Both editions quickly sold out from the publisher.[citation needed] In the summer of 2009, Dogged Press issued a 3000-copy hardcover edition.[citation needed]


Greenberg, Martin H.; Gorman, Ed; Munster, Bill, eds. (1994). The Dean Koontz Companion. New York: Berkeley Books.


  1. ^ a b c d Dean Koontz. Podcast Episode 25: Book of Counted Sorrows 1 (Podcast). Retrieved July 9, 2011.
  2. ^ Bauch, Chelsea (December 10, 2010). "When Real Books Inspire Fake Books". Retrieved July 2, 2011.
  3. ^ "The Book of Counted Sorrows 1". Retrieved 1 February 2013.
  4. ^ DSN Retailing Today. 40 (21). November 5, 2001. p. 6!xrn_1_0_A79867442?sw_aep=frlopacplus. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ Stefko, Joe (2001). The Book of Counted Sorrows. Archived from the original on April 8, 2003. Retrieved July 2, 2011.

6. [[Dean Koontz on e-books and writing] ]