Ignatius Perrish spent the night drunk and doing terrible things. He woke up the next morning with a thunderous hangover, a raging headache, and a pair of horns growing from his temples. At first, Ig thought the horns were a hallucination, the product of a mind damaged by rage and grief. He had spent the last year in a lonely, private purgatory, following the death of his beloved, Merrin Williams, who was raped and murdered under inexplicable circumstances. A mental breakdown would have been the most natural thing in the world. But there was nothing natural about the horns, which were all too real.
Once the righteous Ig had enjoyed the life of the blessed: born into privilege, the second son of a renowned musician and younger brother of a rising late-night TV star, he had security, wealth, and a place in his community. Ig had it all, and more—he had Merrin and a love founded on shared daydreams, mutual daring, and unlikely midsummer magic. But Merrin's death damned all that. The only suspect in the crime, Ig was never charged or tried. And he was never cleared. In the court of public opinion in Gideon, New Hampshire, Ig is and always will be guilty because his rich and connected parents pulled strings to make the investigation go away. Nothing Ig can do, nothing he can say, matters. Everyone, it seems, including God, has abandoned him. Everyone, that is, but the devil inside.
Now Ig is possessed of a terrible new power to go with his terrible new look—a macabre talent he intends to use to find the monster who killed Merrin and destroyed his life. Being good and praying for the best got him nowhere. It's time for a little revenge. It's time the devil had his due.
©2010 Joe Hill (P)2010 HarperCollins Publishers
An introverted excavator.
I really enjoyed this story and was eager to get back to listening to it. It is a great premise. I love a good sympathy for the devil story. That said:
1) I only tolerated the narrator. Maybe it was the director's fault. His reading of the protagonist's lines didn't resonate with what we know about Ig. Ig is kind of a big wimp, and nothing makes him seem otherwise, except for the narrator's intonation. The acting didn't match the writing.
2) Hill is a better storyteller than he is a writer. He is still early in his career and I want to read more by him, but he was often too "on the nose."
3) I didn't like any of the characters to really root for them. Sometimes that is OK in a book, but with this book, everyone was so terrible that I wanted someone, anyone, to be vaguely likeable.
Those are a few caveats about what was ultimately a fun listening experience.
Very original idea, great story and loved the ending, listened to it twice.
Keep the stories coming please Joe, Heart Shaped Box was awesome as was Horns.
Credit-worthy, good narrator, great author.
Joe Hill has some very interesting, "What Ifs". What if a box had a Ghost in it, What if a little boy was born Inflatable, or What if you wake up one morning and have horns? Wrap that up in a really fun mystery and a very sad love story and you have Horns.
The bad guys where very Dean Koontzish in the hole, REALY RALY Evil Bad guy that you want to beat to death with a shovel and take a long time to do it. There is ALOT of flash backs and some are very long to the point you start to think you are reading a different book. I could rally have used a little more of the horn stuff. I would like to have seen him have a little more fun with them before everything got serious and started flashing back to before the horns.
This was a good book. Joe Hill stories are fun reads. I had lots of emotions while reading this. Happy, Sad, Anger, Fun. Read it, you will know what I mean.
I can think of a number of ways it could haved ended for Lee, but Joe Hill had other ideas. Yes the ending was a bit weird, but the story for much of the time is an absolute hoot when Ig crosses paths with people. I thought Fred Berman did an outstanding narration of the book.
I loved the story. I enjoyed that the story is unpredictable. The character development was very well written as was the flow of the story. It has been a year since i read the book and since then i have watched the movie. The book is 100 times better than the movie. I am writing a review now because i am going to listen to it again. This will be the only book I have listened twice to.... it is that good. I know this review does not help you decide to listen to the story but i will include that if you are looking for a twisted, weird, and brutal psychological love story (yes i thought it had a bit of a tragic love story to it) this book is for you. It will keep you guessing, keep you on the edge of your seat, and keep you WANTING MORE!!!! I could NOT stop listening. Well done Mr. Hill.
I am brutally honest. Popular, love everything they read, reviewers are scared to go neg. and risk their ranking. It's your money!!!
The whole book is good, but the first couple of hours are fall on the floor funny, and a little sad. You have to listen to know what I am talking about. There is a love story in here and you will fall in love with her, yourself. Like several of King's books such as "It" this will take you back to your childhood. It is a great story about Evil, Love and Friendship.
GOD IS DEAD
I am a Christian, but was okay with Hill questioning God. If you are bother by such things, this is not the book for you. God is made fun of and put down.
Just like dad, Hill is a liberal and his stuff is political. In this book the devil is compared to Karl Rove. That is a small part of the book, but if you are sensitive, you will not like it.
I thought the narrator was excellent for this book. I have read EEEEEE!! in books before and usually thought how silly. Fred does this a couple of times and with so much feeling, I will never read that as silly again. You laugh, but when you hear it, you will be feeling Ig's pain.
$5.95 and $2.50
At the time that I am writing this, you can get this book for $5.95. That is a secret unannounced sale, and I don't know when it will end. This is also Customer Appreciation Month and this qualifies as one of the four books you can buy and get a $10 coupon. Which means you only pay $3.45 for this in the long run. This is a great buy at full price, what a great deal to get it so low now.
Yes - but only one who wasn't devoutly Christian! The religion themes get stronger as the book goes along - it's tolerable but a little overdone at times. I'm an atheist so it was no problem for me but may be hard to tolerate for those sensitive to religious themes.
I liked the writing - I'm excited to read more from this author. I always liked his dad Stephen King's stories but not his writing so much. This was the opposite - The story wasn't the best ever but I loved his writing, I found myself smiling at his turns of phrase and symbolism in a way that I do with Gillian Flynn.
I loved the first few scenes when he finds out what the horns do. Such an interesting concept that I think he could have taken even further - it went to far into the Biblical theme for me, I would rather he had explored Ig's new powers further.
Not sure but the theme song would definitely be Devil Inside by Inxs :)
The writing kept me reading but some scenes felt unnecessary - the story could've been half as long. Will definitely try something else from this author though, seems to me that he has all the best bits of his father.
I'd give every past and future novel written by Mr. Hill a try. I would however, rather not listen to another novel narrated by Mr. Berman.
Based strictly on character development, my favorite is Ig. The other characters are mostly non-existent, small players and what not. The other main characters do not have much development, but it is not a hindrance to the story.
The narrator came off sounding like a washed up radio personality that is in love with his own voice. He over enunciates and has this phony feeling, gravely tone. I think the goal was to set a darker tone, but it felt harsh and forced. When he reads dialogue for a woman it feels like he uses a mocking tone the entire time, making even sweet sentiments sound bitchy.
It inspired me to become an editor. Assuming the editor wasn't overruled profusely by the author, they should never be employed by another author again.
Several things within this novel make no sense, most extremely minor and probably only bother me. The biggest issue though is the way that everyone, including his family, treats the main character. They all assume he is guilty of murdering his girlfriend. Many characters make reference to the fact that they always thought he would do something like that, or that they always had a bad feeling about him. Yet, there is nothing in his back story that validates those statements. The character is portrayed as a loving boyfriend that dotes on and adores her. The way their relationship is portrayed, no one would ever think he would have done her any harm unless there were stacks of evidence a mile high. Even if there was that mountain of evidence, his family would still not have believed in his guilt.
Also, as with his first novel, Mr. Hill doesn't seem to be able to write believable dialogue. However, he has greatly improved since his first novel. Primarily, it is the dialogue that is angry or confrontational that feels unrealistic.
Overall though, this is a fascinating story and a good read, worth the money.
Joe, you are a great writer, and this book is much better than your last one, but the ending really needed to be better written. It's like, you lay out this great story, give it plot twists and charactor developements that carry me along, then it seems you needed to wrap it up and rushed the ending with a quick fix-it-all. I still enjoyed it though. It's worth the credit.
There are a lot of good ideas here, but they never completely gel. The book also tends to break down into novellas right when things get interesting. Once you are finally hooked into the story of Ig and his mysterious horns, the book spends hours in flashback mode with "Cherry", which starts off well but suffers from overstaying it's welcome. You then get back into the story only to have it come to another halt with "The Fixer", another novella length section going over events that were already implied pretty clearly as well as other events completely extraneous to the story. All would be redeemed by a satisfying climax, but alas, the climax is a mess, both literally and figuratively. Hill is a writer with abundant talent, as Heart Shaped Box and his current comic series Locke & Key proves in spades, but this one needed to stay in the oven a little while longer.
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