Heart-Shaped Box sat on my Kindle, unread for far too long. I’ve taken a bit of a shining to Joe Hill’s writing; he writes old school in a newfangled way. His books, the ones that I have read, are all a good length (no one hundred page novellas), complete standalones (there is no book 15 in the series) and definitely unique.
As I read Heart-Shaped Box, one thing kept popping up in my head over and over again, onions. Now, stay with me here and let me explain. This book had layers, so many layers. Just as one part of Judas Coyne’s life was revealed, there was more of him revealed: his history, his hobbies, his little idiosyncrasies. Judas Coyne became, not just a character in a book, but a complete human being. Joe Hill not only brought his protagonist to life, but each and every single character. He took the time he needed to give his characters layers.
Beyond the characters, the story itself is layered with plots, subplots and comic relief that is so far down in the core that I have to give kudos to the planning and orchestration of the story.
In my humble opinion, if you love horror and you want to know the direction that it’s going, read Joe Hill. You won’t be disappointed.