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Heart-Shaped Box

Posted on 2007.03.05 at 14:31
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Remember when you last read a horror novel that got under your skin?  I read about three horror novels a month, interspersed with SF/F, NF, and "literary" fiction, but here we have a novel that is amazingly literary, even poetic at times, and one of the most frightening things I've ever read.   I've read so many horror novels, seen so many horror movies, that I can't begin to list them, and like most of you who read horror, I've grown extremely jaded.   One of the main reasons I started writing horror, was that I wanted to tell the kind of stories that really shook me up.  I ache to pull readers into my darkest obsessions. I have this overwhelming urge (and conceit) to tell a tale that will leave readers shivering in the dark, their palms slick with sweat, the animal fully engaged and the fight-or-flight instinct in overdrive.  More than that, I want to fill my readers' brains with conflict, with lust and horror warring inside them.  Well, I can aspire.  But Joe Hill has shown that he's more than up to the challenge.

Joe Hill's novel, "Heart-Shaped Box" broke through my jade armor and flayed my nerves like a straight razor.  The ghost story sucked me in and dug claws of dread into my spine.  There were many times when I literally shuddered.  I can't remember the last time I read a horror novel, and instead of thinking, "That was a really cool image/line/tableaux," or groaned at a cliche, found myself cringing.  I felt as if a cold, dead hand tickled the back of my neck.  And as the story unfolded, the fingers descended, curling into an icy fist that clutched my balls in a vice grip.  Seriously, this book really got to me.   Joe Hill is Stephen King's son, the same son who as a little boy shoved pins into a voodoo doll of his father in the movie "Creepshow."   Now, Mr. Hill  has shown he's a master at placing needles of fear into his readers.  If you're up for a ride down the deathroad, jump into this book. 


C.Rae for Today
rae_too_serious at 2007-03-07 07:03 (UTC) (Link)
I miss you, Rob. Hopefully I'll be visiting soon.
rjcrowtherjr at 2007-03-11 11:09 (UTC) (Link)
Miss you too, my lovely woman. How's life in the academic jungle? Lived any good books lately?

Love, Rob
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