This isn't the first of Joe’s books that I have tried to read. I tried Horns many months ago but had to give up as it wasn't quite sitting with me. NOS4R2 however is on a completely new level. It had me hooked from the start, the idea and plot behind it all was fresh and interesting and I couldn't stop myself wanting to read more and more of it every day. Took the kids to the park? The book came too.
Now it would be so easy for any critic or reviewer to draw comparisons with Joe’s dad. Unfortunately I'm not the exception. There does seem to be a very strong influence with this novel, more so than Horns, and you can see a lot of Stephen in this book. Mr Gasmask Man could very easily be Garbage Can Man. The story reads like a combination of Talisman, The Stand and a few others. This though doesn't detract you from the story in any way. In fact I quite liked it. It is definitely Hill’s universe we are in but the parallels to Kings just make it feel that much more real.
Now that isn't a slight to Hill as a writer, far from it. Everyone has their influences and how can Joe not be influenced by his father. What I also find very interesting is that it is Hill’s 3rd novel that has seen him now blast his way onto the literary map, much like The Shining, did for King. People will now talk about Hill as a serious credible author in his own merits. He can stand side by side with his father and no longer have to be compared to him.
The story tells of a young girl Vic McQueen who discovers she has the talent to find things that have been lost by others. No matter what it is or where in the world she can imagine conjure a bridge from where she is to where the object she seeks is. She meets others like her with their own abilities but it is the evil Charlie Manx with his Rolls Royce Wraith who with his own abilities throws Vic’s world into a horror filled chaos. After being bored one day Vic asks her bridge to take her to somewhere fun. It takes her to Christmasland, Manx’s own imagination construct where he lives off the souls of children he has been taking for a very long time. Vic just about escapes and grows up with problems and issues her lack of sanity have fed. It is only when Manx comes back from the dead to kidnap her son and take him to Christmasland that Vic knows she must discover a new way to find the bridge that takes her to where she needs to go. To find Manx and kill him before her son is lost forever.
If you haven't picked up any Hill book before now, make sure you read this one first.
Written on 24th June 2013 by Arron.
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