Thursday, June 30th, 2016
The Short Take:
Hill’s horror stories continue to impress. This one is built around a spore which tends to make infected people burst into flame. Needless to say, infected people are not valued by the healthy. Of course, it all sounds far fetched, but Hill does a nice job of putting enough science in his plot to make it scarily plausible.
Horror needs likable heroes, out-of-control situations, a truly bad guy, and lots of surprises. Hill satisfied all these requirements. He also has a nice sense of pacing: It’s not a non-stop rollercoaster ride, you have opportunities to catch your breath before the next terrorizing sequence hits.
Of course, Hill grew up in a house with the master of horror — his father, Stephen King. It’s interesting to note though that his agent didn’t know about Hill’s family ties until years into their relationship. Joe Hill sold on his own merits, as proven by each of his novels.
There are some big action sequences you can easily imagine translating to the silver screen. However, it’s Hill’s endearingly upbeat heroine and his enigmatic hero who make the plot catch fire.
A Little Plot:
People contracting Dragonscale often combust, sometimes taking down whole buildings in the process. Nurse Harper Grayson helps the infected at a New England hospital until she contracts the disease. Husband Jakob wants a suicide pact, but she wants to protect her unborn child. The mysterious Fireman take her to what might be a safe haven from her husband and others who hunt down people with Dragonscale. But her new home is beset by dangers both from the outside and within.
Want to know more about Joe Hill and his horror novels? Click here.