Posted: February 25, 2007
Heart-Shaped Box is one of the better debut novel I have had the luck of reading. Itís written by Joe Hill. Hill is, as probably everyone know by now, the son of Stephen King but that is all Iím going to mention his father in this review. Why? Well, for the simple reason that Hill is good enough to deserves to be judged on his own merits rather then on who happens to be his father.
In Heart-Shaped Box we get to meat Judas Coyne, a former rockíníroll star that now has reach his mid 50ís and even though he isnít in a band any more he is still living the rockíníroll lifestyle. He keeps himself with young girlfriends that he has the habit of naming after the state they are from instead of their names. How about that?
Heís also a collector of the macabre and has everything from a snuff movie to cookbook for cannibals. So, when he sees an ad for a ghost on the Internet he canít resist buying it. And that is a mistake he will live to regret. As it turns out the ghost is very much real and whatís even worse is that the ghost wants Jude dead. As it turns out the ghost is the step father of one of Judeís ďstatesĒ and after she committed suicide he is now here to revenge her.
Hill has managed to put together a really good story. Itís one of those books you have a hard time putting down even though you have to if you donít want to spend the entire night reading. It gets hold of you almost form the first page and doesnít let goÖuntil you turn the last page.
I had the fortune to both read it and listen to it. Besides being released in hardcover Heart-Shaped Box is also out on audio. The audio is narrated by Stephen Lang and is about 11 hours long. Lang is very talented and even though I havenít heard anything he has narrated before I really like the way he narrates Heart-Shaped Box. It doesnít leave much else to ask for. Itís very good in other words, as the book itself!
Lilja's final words about Heart-Shaped Box
So, as I said Hillís Heart-Shaped Box is a very strong debut novel and already Iím curious to what heíll do next. And if you have only read the book I can highly recommend that you check out the audio. Personally I canít wait for his next book!