Cuddlebuggery Book Blog > Horror
Chuck Palahniuk believes that you are an idiot.
I say this without any definitive proof, of course, but having read this particular novel of the man’s in its entirety and parts of another (Damned, if you are curious), I think that this assertion is a fairly reasonable one. My experience with Palahniuk is quite limited, obviously, so you may freely label me as being overly judgmental or poorly informed without having to worry about me heatedly debating your claims. Perhaps you are right. Perhaps I am too quick to such a strong opinion.
I find myself, however, caring little about the ultimate validity of my views, because, after forcing myself through Haunted, I think it likely that I will never touch Palahniuk’s work again, and I am not in the least upset by this decision.
I picked this one up because I have long suspected that its author’s craft is the type that is, if absolutely nothing else, entertaining.
If there is but one thing that I truly adore about Stephen King’s work, it is his penchant for crafting consistently interesting short stories. Granted, the quality of his storytelling tends to vary quite broadly from one tableau to the next, and his tone can vary so dramatically that it is oftentimes difficult to maintain a stable understanding and mindset towards what he is trying to accomplish in the space of some dozen pages at a time. Still, his entries are always, if nothing else, entertaining, with at least one wonderfully weird, wonderfully unsettling idea or detail to make the brief journey in one way or another worthwhile.
I bring this up because Joe Hill strikes me as being much the same sort of writer as his father. In fact, I could easily see 20th Century Ghosts as being a work stemmed from the elder King’s pen, so similar is Hill’s wordplay and imagination.
To any authors trying to figure out how to end their series, I advise you to talk to Ann Aguirre because that lady knows what she’s doing. If I had to sum up my feelings in a gif, it would be this:
I imagine Horde feels similar to a satisfying run. (As I am the kind of person that goes out of her way to avoid that sort of activity, I wouldn’t know firsthand but I’ve read about it.) Your adrenaline’s up and your blood is pumping, you’re in that magic zone where everything’s a rush and you haven’t started to feel the fatigue. It has all of the best bits of the previous Razorland books (action, danger that feels real, character growth and subtle, heartwarming feels) minus the self-righteous assholes running around saying the monsters will eat you if girls wear pants.
Deuce continues to be, hands down, one of my favorite YA Heroines.
Despite being a longtime fan of the singular Stephen King, I feel that my acquaintance with his work is depressingly lacking. While I’ve read plenty by him, I have yet to get to some of his most celebrated and/or popular contributions. I consider myself a fan of the man, but how can one consider himself as such if he has yet to read the Dark Tower series, or The Stand?
I picked up The Shining, so famous today and yet untouched by myself, on a whim, primarily because it had suddenly come to my attention that a sequel had been written. Seeing as how very few of King’s works has ever played recipient to a bona-fide follow-up, I figured that my reading of one of his most famous pieces was long overdue, especially given its treatment by other mediums of entertainment.
I have, of course, seen Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation.
Neil Gaiman is the sort of author whom I always mean to read, and yet never actually get around to picking up.
I’ve enjoyed adaptations of his work. Coraline is one of my favorite films, and Stardust, though flawed, proved an entertaining watch.
And I like the man himself. His imagination and skill as a writer is clear, and he seems like that kind of down-to-earth celebrity whom you can easily imagine spending an afternoon with, drinking tea and talking fiction.
Yet, I’ve only read one of his stories in its entirety, and that was the aforementioned tale of button eyes and Other Mothers. I have attempted his Good Omens twice, and one day intend to make the journey through his Sandman series, but otherwise have been seemingly the only reader in all of existence who hasn’t devoured and loved his words to bits.
All this leading up to the actual novel subject to this review: As his latest, Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane is a remarkable little book that really works for a number of reasons, and proves a slice of cultural output that convinces me once and for all that I really need to seek out the author’s other works.