Which Stephen King novel dialogue inspired the title of John Gardner's Death is Forever (1992)?

DragonpolDragonpol The Crazy World of David Dragonpol
edited March 2018 in Literary 007 Posts: 14,005
Ever since I read the passage quoted below from John Gardner's website shortly after it "went live" in about March 2002 I have been wondering which actual Stephen King novel dialogue passage it was that inspired the title of John Gardner's Death is Forever (1992). Perhaps a Stephen King fan here would be able to tell me which novel of his features a passage of dialogue with "death is forever" in it?

Of course, Death is Forever itself acknowledges in a quote at the beginning of the novel that its title is taken from the end paragraph of Ian Fleming's Diamonds Are Forever (1956), so this rather muddies the waters on this topic.

Nonetheless, I assume the title was inspired (as Mr Gardner noted on his website in 2002) by "some dialogue in a Stephen King book." The question is - which Stephen King book? All I have to go on is the fact that it was obviously one that was published prior to 1992. Hopefully a major Stephen King fan out there can help solve this mystery. I realise that Mr King is a highly prolific author of course and tracking this quote down will not be easy! Thanks in advance! :)

The relevant passage from John Gardner's website - The BOND page:

I have always believed that the editor who begins a session with the words, "I'm not happy with the title," has nothing to say about the book. Many reviewers said that my titles were poor. Little did they know what I'd saved them from because publishers almost to a man (or woman) wanted title changes and the Americans in particular suggested the most appalling new titles: I recall such wonders as Oh No, Mr. Bond! And Bond Fights Back. Those two finally became, after many protests on my part, the dreadful No Deals Mr. Bond while my original title for Icebreaker was instantly turned down only to be picked up again a month later after turkey after turkey had to be rejected. My former agent is convinced to this day that he was responsible for Death is Forever, which was actually taken from some dialogue in a Stephen King book. I tried to explain it to him but he still claimed that he was the one. I can't think why because it isn't a very sophisticated title. Peter Janson-Smith came up with two of the titles, though by now I've forgotten which, and somewhere I have the original lengthy list of quite abominable titles suggested by publishers.

Quoted from: http://www.john-gardner.com/bond - accessed 20 March 2018.


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