“Wild, mesmerizing, perversely witty....A Valentine from hell.”
—Janet Maslin, New York Times
The publication of Joe Hill’s beautifully textured, deliciously scary debut novel Heart-Shaped Box was greeted with the sort of overwhelming critical acclaim that is rare for a work of skin-crawling supernatural terror. It was cited as a Best Book of the Year by Atlanta magazine, the Tampa Tribune, the St. Louis Post Dispatch, and the Village Voice, to name but a few. Award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling Neil Gaiman of The Sandman, The Graveyard Book, and Anansi Boys fame calls Joe Hill’s story of a jaded rock star haunted by a ghost he purchased on the internet, “relentless, gripping, powerful.” Open this Heart-Shaped Box from two-time Bram Stoker Award-winner Hill if you dare and see what all the well-deserved hoopla is about.
"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.
Do you sleep with the light on? Are you in the habit of checking your doors and windows before you go to bed? Maybe even checking under your bed? If you are about to crack open Joe Hill's chilling thriller Heart-Shaped Box, you might want to rethink your nighttime habits--Hill's story about an aging rock star (with a penchant for macabre artifacts) who buys a haunted suit online will scare you silly. But don't take our word for it. We asked bestselling authors (and masters of dark terror tales themselves) Scott Smith, and Harlan Coben to read Heart-Shaped Box and give us their take. Check out their reviews below, and you might want to pick up a nightlight while you're at it. --Daphne Durham
| Guest Reviewer: Scott Smith |
In 1993, Scott Smith wowed readers with his stunning debut thriller, A Simple Plan. Thirteen years later, he spooked us again with The Ruins, a horror-thriller about four Americans traveling in Mexico who stumble across a nightmare in the jungle.
The set-up for Joe Hill's novel, Heart-Shaped Box, is appealingly simple. Jude Coyne, an aging rock star, buys himself a dead man's suit. He acquires it online, lured by the promise that the dead man's ghost will be included in his purchase. Jude thinks this is a joke, of course. He also assumes the seller is a stranger. We soon discover that he's wrong on both counts, however, and from this point on the story moves with an exhilarating urgency. Jude wants the ghost gone; the ghost wants Jude dead. We watch, chapter-by-chapter, as they battle for survival. "Watch" is the appropriate word, too, because this is an extremely visual book. Hill's prose is lean and precise, and he renders Jude's world with impressive confidence. It feels solid, every detail both correct and fresh. And this physicality provides a firm platform for the book's otherworldly happenings, which seem all the more frightening for being so securely grounded.
Hill has a flawless sense of pacing. His narrative never flags, nor does it ever move so quickly as to outrun itself. And one can sense his literary ambition pushing at the margins of the genre. There are times when his writing, for all its spare efficiency, seems to jump away from him, stopping one small step short of poetry. An e-mail to Jude from the ghost (trust me, it's not as absurd as it sounds) could even pass for something ee cummings might've written, in an especially morbid mood. And toward the end of the book, when Hill describes a trip down death's "night road" in a '65 Mustang, the passage has a startlingly lyrical beauty.
The story's horror ultimately has as much to do with Jude Coyne's past--his mistakes, abandonments and betrayals--as with anything supernatural. Jude has caused a lot of pain over the years, moving through life with a carelessness that verges on the callous. His battle with the ghost brings this behavior into sharp relief, forcing him to reflect upon his own capacity for cruelty. This dawning self-awareness leavens the book's bleakness and gore (and it is delightfully gory in places) with an unexpected sweetness. Despite our initial impression, Jude is gradually revealed--both to himself and the reader--as an essentially decent, even kind man. It's this kindness, this fledgling ability to love and be loved, that will ultimately be of crucial consequence in his death struggle with the ghost. And it's what makes Hill's debut not only well-written and terrifying, but also--as it draws to its close--surprisingly moving. So go ahead, take a chance, and open his Heart-Shaped Box. I think you’ll be happy you did. --Scott Smith
| Guest Reviewer: Harlan Coben |
Harlan Coben is the author of the beloved Myron Bolitar series about a wisecracking sports agent, as well as stunning stand-alone novels like The Innocent and his breakout thriller Tell No One. His new novel The Woods releases on April 17, 2007.
You, dear reader, are obviously somewhat versed in making online purchases, so today, immediately after you click on the yellow "Add to Shopping Cart" on the top right hand corner of this page, why not do an online search and buy something totally unique?
Like, say, a vengeful ghost.
That is what rock-star Judas Coyne does, thinking it will be a laugh, fun for his "sick-o" collection of such things. It seems a random buy, but Judas soon learns that it is anything but. This particular ghost is one Craddock McDermott, step-father to recent suicide victim and boy, is he cranky. He demands revenge for his step-daughter’s death, which he blames on Judas’s shabby treatment of her.
Or is he after something else?
There are Amazon readers who will give you a better plot summary. Don't read them too closely because Joe Hill provides plenty of fun surprises. Heart-Shaped Box is a true spine-tingler. I don’t use that hyphenated word much anymore. We have seen and read it all, haven't we? But right away, in the first chapter, there was a subtle line that made the hairs on the back of my neck go up in a way I haven't experienced since I first discovered great horror as a teenager.
Hill writes with a sure hand. The prose is compelling. Like most memorable tales of horror, this book is more about redemption than scary moments--though Heart-Shaped Box has plenty of scares. They are visceral, shocking and very well done. The characters are flawed and real. The father-son relationship adds texture and surprising poignancy.
So here's the thing. My guess is, you won’t find a ghost to buy online, but if you read the Heart-Shaped Box, you will be getting something that will haunt you and startle you and stay with you and yes, visit you in your dreams.
Sleep well, dear reader. --Harlan Coben
Judas Coyne is a collector of the macabre: a cookbook for cannibals . . . a used hangman's noose . . . a snuff film. An aging death-metal rock god, his taste for the unnatural is as widely known to his legions of fans as the notorious excesses of his youth. But nothing he possesses is as unlikely or as dreadful as his latest purchase, an item he discovered on the Internet:
I will sell my stepfather's ghost to the highest bidder . . .
For a thousand dollars, Jude has become the owner of a dead man's suit, said to be haunted by a restless spirit. But what UPS delivers to his door in a black heart-shaped box is no metaphorical ghost, no benign conversation piece. Suddenly the suit's previous owner is everywhere: behind the bedroom door . . . seated in Jude's restored Mustang . . . staring out from his widescreen TV. Waiting—with a gleaming razor blade on a chain dangling from one hand . . .
"Sobre este título" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.
Descripción Gollancz, 2007. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Never used!. Nº de ref. de la librería P110575079126
Descripción Victor Gollancz, London, 2007. Hard Cover. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. First Edition, First Impression. Signed bookplate Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Signed by Author. Nº de ref. de la librería 10273
Descripción Gollancz, 2007. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. First (1st) Edition. SIGNED & Doodled y Joe Hill . Book is Unread . Front/Back: NEW . Spine: NEW . Printing: 1 . Year: 2007. Signed by Author(s). Nº de ref. de la librería 128
Descripción Gollancz, 2007. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. First (1st) Edition. SEALED . SIGNED by Joe Hill . Limited Edition . Slipcased Edition . Book is Unread . Front/Back: NEW . Spine: NEW . Printing: . Year: 2007. Signed by Author(s). Nº de ref. de la librería 1147
Descripción Gollancz, 2007. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. First (1st) Edition. SEALED . SIGNED by Joe Hill . Limited Edition . Slipcased Edition . Book is Unread . Front/Back: NEW . Spine: NEW . Printing: . Year: 2007. Signed by Author(s). Nº de ref. de la librería 1188
Descripción Gollancz, 2007. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. First (1st) Edition. SIGNED by Joe Hill . Book is Unread . Front/Back: NEW . Spine: NEW . Printing: 1 . Year: 2007. Signed by Author(s). Nº de ref. de la librería 1289
Descripción Gollancz. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. 0575079126 New Condition. Nº de ref. de la librería NEW7.1967101
Descripción Gollancz, 2007. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. 1st Edition. Rare Slipcased Limited Edition Still in Original Cellophane Wrapped Signed and Numbered. Doodled Books® aim is to sell unique trend setting books for book collectors. Doodled Books® is a fully trademarked and limited company based in the United Kingdom - so shop with confidence - we are the Official Doodled Bookstore Worldwide. Every dispatched book is protected in removable film. We pack each product with bubble wrap and packaging peanuts and place inside a cardboard box. This ensures that your rare book arrives in perfect condition. If you have any questions about our products please get in touch. Signed by Author(s). Nº de ref. de la librería 000269
Descripción Gollancz, UK, 2007. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. Ed Bettison Ilustrador. 1st Edition. UK 1st/1st limited edition in new/unread condition. Number 1261 of 1,300 signed by Joe Hill and the cover artist Ed Bettison. Synopsis : 'Buy my stepfather's ghost' read the e-mail. So Jude did. He bought it, in the shape of the dead man's suit, delivered in a heart-shaped box, because he wanted it: because his fans ate up that kind of story. It was perfect for his collection: the genuine skulls and the bones, the real honest-to-God snuff movie, the occult books and all the rest of the paraphanalia that goes along with his kind of hard/goth rock. But the rest of his collection doesn't make the house feel cold. The bones don't make the dogs bark; the movie doesn't make Jude feel as if he's being watched. And none of the artefacts bring a vengeful old ghost with black scribbles over his eyes out of the shadows to chase Jude out of his home, and make him run for his life . Signed by Author and Illustrat. Nº de ref. de la librería 001778