Book Review: NOS4A2 by: Joe Hill

Rating: 4/5

Publisher: William Morrow

Publish Date: April 30, 2013 

Origins:  From Publisher for Review

Format:  Hardcover

Order Links:  Amazon / Barnes & Noble

Synopsis: NOS4A2 is a spine-tingling novel of supernatural suspense from master of horror Joe Hill, the New York Times bestselling author of Heart-Shaped Box and Horns.

Victoria McQueen has a secret gift for finding things: a misplaced bracelet, a missing photograph, answers to unanswerable questions. On her Raleigh Tuff Burner bike, she makes her way to a rickety covered bridge that, within moments, takes her wherever she needs to go, whether it’s across Massachusetts or across the country.

Charles Talent Manx has a way with children. He likes to take them for rides in his 1938 Rolls-Royce Wraith with the NOS4A2 vanity plate. With his old car, he can slip right out of the everyday world, and onto the hidden roads that transport them to an astonishing – and terrifying – playground of amusements he calls “Christmasland.”

Then, one day, Vic goes looking for trouble—and finds Manx. That was a lifetime ago. Now Vic, the only kid to ever escape Manx’s unmitigated evil, is all grown up and desperate to forget. But Charlie Manx never stopped thinking about Victoria McQueen. He’s on the road again and he’s picked up a new passenger: Vic’s own son.

Review: Power and magic exist – what makes it ‘bad’ or ‘good’ depends on how it’s used. Yet how do you know when you’ve crossed the line? Vic McQueen uses hers to become a “finder”, she finds lost items by crossing the Shortaway Bridge on her Tuff Burner bike. Charles Manx uses his to ‘save’ children from abusive homes and take them to Christmasland in his vintage Rolls Royce Wraith, where it’s always Christmas and everyone is always full of joy. Maggie Leigh’s magic is gathering information via the use of Scrabble tiles. Vic, Charlie, and Maggie all can access and manipulate the inscape for different purposes and each pay a different cost…

I read NOS4A2 in two days and was enthralled from the beginning. I felt as if you got a sense of the characters through not only the descriptions but by their actions as well. While other characters, like Charles Manx and his current partner Bing or Maggie or Lou Carmody, had their moments in the story I felt this was Vic’s story. As we go through Vic’s life starting at childhood, we are introduced to the other characters who all will have an impact on her life in some way. Mr. Hill has created characters which will stick with you and events which will make you reconsider the very nature of reality. Along with the nail-biting suspense and unspeakable evil, there is also dark humor which at times made me laugh out loud. NOS4A2 is a horror story of epic proportions and one I highly recommend!


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