The paperback edition of Michael Connelly's 1996 novel The Poet released in May of 2004 includes a three-page introduction written by Stephen King and dated 18 October 2003.

King praised The Poet as "a marvelous and sustained piece of story-telling," commended Connelly on prose that is both "elegant and matter-of-fact," and cited the novel's first line – "Death is my beat" – as "a blue-ribbon winner." He called the novel "the best work that Michael Connelly, a prolific writer, had done up to [that] point," going so far as to propose that, while he doesn't "use the word classic lightly, [he felt] that The Poet may well prove to be one."

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