I read NOS4A2 by Joe Hill


. . . and liked it.

I also read Stewart O’Nan’s The Good Wife and Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs biography, but I won’t be reviewing them right now, other than to say Stewart O’Nan is a good writer and Steve Jobs was kind of an asshole. And a genius. A genius asshole.

I suppose I should include a mention of who Joe Hill is, besides being a fantastic author and co-creator of the comic book series Locke & Key, like every other review of his book(s), but I won’t. Google him.

So I liked NOS4A2. It’s about a twisted guy named Charlie Manx, who’s a vampire of sorts (thus the title, sound it out, if you know a little about vampires and/or classic horror movies, you’ll get it). He’s also a child-napper, which ties into his “vampirism”.

The protagonist is Victoria “Vic” McQueen, who’s able to find lost things by using her Raleigh Tuff Burner (and later, a Triumph motorcycle) and a bridge. A bridge of . . . the mind! There’s a little theme in the book about the power of imagination, which may be why another character, Lou Carmody, McQueen’s long-suffering lover/father of her child, is a geek who’s into comic books and Firefly. (Her kid’s named Bruce Wayne Carmody.)

Manx ends up kidnapping Wayne, and Vic races off to find him. Epic showdown ensues. You may not feel the same way again about Christmas and the smell of gingerbread after reading it. I know I won’t.

I recommend it. One thing, though: buy the book, don’t download it to your Nook, like I did. The book has illustrations. The Nook version doesn’t. Can’t speak for the Kindle or iPad or whatever versions. (Though it was cool pre-ordering it on my Nook and waking up Tuesday, April 30, seeing it ready for download.)

That’s sort of the problem with e-books, I’m noticing; you miss out on cool stuff like that. And I don’t understand why. The Nook (the HD+ model I have, anyway) is capable of surfing the web (I sometimes check WordPress on it), doing e-mail, and displaying comic books and magazines with no problems. Why then no illustrations?


(That works better if you say it aloud in a Hulk voice.)

Well, at least I can hijack my mom’s copy. I bought her the hardback for Mother’s Day.

Sorry, this started out as a review, and turned into a rant. Um . . . check out Hill’s short story collection, 20th Century Ghosts. And I hear that another of his books, Horns, is getting turned into a movie. And also read Heart-Shaped Box, his first book. You can follow him on Twitter, too. I do.

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