Del Rey, an imprint of Ballantine Books at the Random House Publishing Group, announced today the cover artist and colorist of The Talisman comics series by Stephen King and Peter Straub.

Cover art will be created by Italian artist Massimo Carnevale, best known in the U.S. for his cover art for Y: The Last Man under DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint, and for his covers of the series Northlander. Born in Rome in 1967, Carnevale has done cover art for numerous Italian comics as well as created his own complete stories. He has received numerous awards for his work in both painting and cover design.

Coloring will be done by Nei Ruffino, who is currently working on Supergirl and Green Lantern for DC Comics, and Escape from Wonderland from Zenescope. She has worked on Return to Wonderland and Final Destination from Zenescope, Dragonlance Chronicles from Devil’s Due, and Gunplay from Platinum Comics. Ruffino has also designed toy boxes and worked on online games for Hasbro’s My Little Pony and Littlest Pet Shop properties.

The epic saga of The Talisman debuts with Issue 0, a never-before-told prequel to the story, to be published by Del Rey Comics this Fall. The Talisman novel, originally published in 1984, is the story of a young teen named Jack Sawyer, who can save his dying mother only by retrieving a magical talisman. To find it he must cross back and forth between our world and the frightening and dangerous landscape of its “twinner” counterpart. Issue 0 explores the separate lives of Jack’s father—in our world, and the mysterious realm known as the Territories — and how evil scheming will forever change Jack’s peaceful life. The series is being adapted by Robin Furth and illustrated by Tony Shasteen. The Talisman Issue 0 will be available in comic book stores everywhere on October 21, 2009.

A limited, black-and-white convention edition of Issue 0 will be available for free exclusively at this year’s Comic-Con International in San Diego, taking place July 22-26. The special issue will be distributed by Del Rey at Booth #1129.

Both The Talisman and its sequel, Black House, are in print with Ballantine Books. Television rights to The Talisman are under development by Steven Spielberg and Kathleen Kennedy.

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