Finders Keepers
First edition cover
AuthorStephen King
CountryUnited States
SeriesBill Hodges Trilogy
GenreCrime fiction
PublishedJune 2, 2015
Media typePrint (Hardcover and Paperback)
Preceded byMr. Mercedes 
Followed byEnd of Watch 

Finders Keepers is a crime novel by American writer Stephen King, published on June 2, 2015. It is the second volume in a trilogy focusing on Detective Bill Hodges, following Mr. Mercedes.[1][2] The book is about the murder of reclusive writer John Rothstein (an amalgamation of John Updike, Philip Roth, and J. D. Salinger[3]), his missing notebooks, and the release of his killer from prison after 35 years.[4] The book's cover was revealed on King's official site on January 30.[5] An excerpt was published in the May 15, 2015 issue of Entertainment Weekly.[6]


In 1978, petty criminal Morris Bellamy robs and murders acclaimed author John Rothstein for ending his famous Runner trilogy on an unsatisfactory note. Prior to the murder, Rothstein had been in reclusive retirement, never publishing another novel but continuing to write in private. More important than the money he steals, Morris covets Rothstein's invaluable notebooks, which contain two books which properly finish the arc of the Runner series. After the murder, Morris hides Rothstein's cash and Moleskine notebooks in a trunk buried near a creek behind his childhood home. Before he can read the manuscripts, Morris is sentenced to life in prison for another crime. Rothstein's murder is never solved.

In the present day, young Peter Saubers now lives in Morris' old home. His father, Tom, was disabled in the events that opened Mr. Mercedes, and the Saubers family is on the brink of financial and emotional ruin. Peter discovers the buried trunk and secretly uses the money to keep his family afloat for the next few years, while gradually becoming engrossed in the Rothstein notebooks. When the money runs out, Pete, now a teenager aware of the true value of his discovery, comes up with a plan to profit from the notebooks. At the same time, Morris, now nearly sixty, has finally been granted parole. He goes to retrieve the buried trunk, only to find it empty. Morris is obsessed with finding the notebooks and learning the ultimate outcome of the Runner series. His search for the notebooks eventually leads him to Peter's family.

As a deadly cat-and-mouse game begins, private detective Bill Hodges, who brought down the murderous Mr. Mercedes, is gradually drawn into the mystery of the unknown benefactor who helped the Sauberses through their rough patch. He knows young Pete is hiding something, but he doesn't know that the missing piece of the puzzle is the answer to the decades-old cold case – John Rothstein's murder.


Finders Keepers received mixed to positive reviews. In her review for The Guardian, Alison Flood praised the book as "expertly plotted" and a "fresh take" on one of King's favorite subjects – "the relationship between a writer and their fans."[7] Janet Maslin of The New York Times wrote that while Finders Keepers "feels very much like a middle volume," it was still a page-turner, and praised the jumps between time periods and the "very appealing trio of crime-solvers who joined forces in 'Mr. Mercedes.'"[8] Nick Romeo of The Boston Globe was more critical, faulting the "somewhat outlandish plot" and how "Deeper themes about the power of fiction feel somewhat grafted onto the suspenseful story."[9]

Television adaptation

Main article: Mr. Mercedes (TV series)

The third season of Mr. Mercedes retains the title from the first Bill Hodges book, and follows the events from Finders Keepers. As of April 2020 the TV show has an uncertain future, as the Audience Network closed and it was uncertain whether the show would return for a fourth season.[10]


  1. ^ McClurg, Jocelyn (2015-06-10). "Stephen King rules at No. 1". USA Today. Retrieved 2016-07-31.
  2. ^ "Stephen King Shares a Few More Details on Finders Keepers and Honors the Victims of Mr. Mercedes". Dread Central. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
  3. ^ "Finders Keepers by Stephen King – writers, beware your fans". 28 May 2015.
  4. ^ "Lilja's". Retrieved 1 June 2015.
  5. ^ " - Recent News: Finders Keepers Cover Reveal". Retrieved 1 June 2015.
  6. ^ "Lilja's Library - The World of Stephen King [1996 - 2015]". Retrieved 1 June 2015.
  7. ^ Flood, Alison (2015-06-15). "Finders Keepers – Stephen King's gripping sequel to Mr Mercedes". The Guardian. Retrieved 2017-01-23.
  8. ^ Maslin, Janet (2015-05-31). "Review: Stephen King Leaps Through Time in 'Finders Keepers'". The New York Times. Retrieved 2017-01-23.
  9. ^ Romeo, Nick (2015-06-18). "Stephen King revisits psychotic fandom in 'Finders Keepers'". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2017-01-23.
  10. ^ Nemetz, Dave (9 January 2020). "AT&T to End Audience Network, Originals Like Mr. Mercedes in Limbo". TV Line. TV Line Media llc. Retrieved 23 May 2020.