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Debra Hamel is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.


Books by Debra Hamel:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


paperback | Kindle | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


paperback | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)





Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


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Hill, Joe: Horns

  Amazon  

4.5 stars

Joe Hill's Horns has a great first line: "Ignatius Martin Perrish spent the night drunk and doing terrible things." And a great hook: when he wakes up the next morning Ig finds that he's grown horns. He's also somehow acquired other devilish attributes. Total strangers can't help but reveal their deepest urges to him once they see the horns, and a complete bio on the person, with a focus on their sins, is transmitted to Ig via the briefest touch. Compelling people to reveal themselves in this way turns out to be an inconvenient superpower to have, since the secrets people harbor are not always comfortable ones, and it's not necessarily a good thing to strip away the polite veneer of one's relationships. In Ig's case, there are some very unsettling truths to be uncovered. His girlfriend, Merrin, was raped and killed about a year earlier, and while there wasn't enough evidence to charge him for the crime, as far as public opinion goes, he's guilty as sin. People think some very bad things about Ig.


Horns follows Ig as he deals with his new attributes and collects unpleasant information, but it jumps around in time and perspective so that the full story of Ig and Merrin is fleshed out: their meeting as kids in church, their storybook romance and shared friendships, and what really happened the night Merrin died. Coming after the rush of the first section, when Ig is dealing with his horns in the present, the flashbacks are initially a disappointment, but one I got over: it turns out that Hill is telling a deeper story than I had originally expected.

What I particularly like about the book is that its absurd premise--that Ig is somehow morphing into Satan--plays itself out in an otherwise (for the most part) realistic world. If we accept the horns, the rest follows. The book's main weakness, to my mind, is where it deviates from this, when the horns are finally explained, sort of: I'm not sure that the explanation quite makes sense to me yet. The conclusion, too, seems over-long and ultimately a bit sappy. But apart from my disappointment with its conclusion, I loved this one.

Comments

1.

I like the idea of this - something a little weird in an otherwise real world.

2.

I wonder what those terrible things are. I like the book already. :D

3.

I do too. And something so odd as growing horns is particularly good.

4.

I would like to see how I could grab your rss feed to stay updated of any changes on your website, but I cant find it, where is the link for it?

5.

Thanks for your interest. You'll see an RSS icon right at the top of the left sidebar.

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