by Joe Hill
Published by: HarperCollins
Narrator: Kate Mulgrew
Length: 19 hours and 41 minutes
Purchase: Amazon | Audible
Narration Rating: 5 shivers
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.
I bought the audiobook of NOS4A2 by Joe Hill last year and decided it would be the perfect listen for this years #HoHoHoRAT. Wouldn’t a trip to Christmasland be wonderful? *shivers* Narrator Kate Mulgrew brilliantly brought Hill’s dark, frightening tale to life.
When I close my eyes, I can see Charles Talent Manx and his 1938 Rolls-Royce Wraith with the NOS4A2 vanity plate. Thanks to Mulgrew, I can hear his raspy voice as he invites young children to take a ride in his wraith to Christmas land.
NOS4A2 was an extraordinary story with incredible worldbuilding from Hill’s descriptions of the Short Way bridge, Maggie’s Scrabble tiles, and Christmasland. He brings the Wraith to life and the villain Manx will send chills down your spine.
The characters are quirky, well developed and unique. Hill shared the tale in multiple perspectives, and it worked brilliantly. Each voice enhanced the suspense bringing an eerie sense of believability to this incredible tale.
- Victoria McQueen was a fantastic heroine with a unique talent for finding things
- Charles Talent Manx, our villain, will dwell in your nightmares
- Maggie who can learn things from a bag of Scrabble pieces
- Victoria’s son shed light on Manx and the real horrors of the Wraith and Christmasland
- Secondary characters like Victoria’s husband, a young man desperate to go to Christmasland, and others only enhanced the tension.
The places within this story are as real and vivid as the characters
- Christmasland where every day is Christmas and every evening is Christmas Eve. Hill brought this nightmarish carnival type world to life
- The Sleigh House a dark, chilling place you never want to go.
- Short Way Bridge is how Victoria travels to find lost things
Inanimate objects that become living breathing things in NOS4A2
- Victoria’s bike(s) travels over the Short Way Bridge. Hill gave them personality and maybe perhaps a touch of magic.
- 1938 Rolls-Royce Wraith. Think Christine, Stephen’s King’s oh so special car but the Wraith is creepier my friends. I can smell the seats and if I close my eyes I can see Charlie Manx at the wheel.
Despite NOS4A2 being a twisted psychological horror that will terrify readers, Hill manages to insert humor with pop culture references that make you pause, breath and laugh. Harry Potter, Wonder Twins, his works and those of others were all referenced to this reader’s delight. Hill had me giggling at the dark humor, shivering, holding my breath and experiencing every one of the character’s emotions as he took me on one hell of a ride.
At nearly twenty hours in length (the book is a tome with seven hundred plus pages) the time passed quickly. I was never bored, completely enthralled and mesmerized by the narration. Her raspy voice is ideally suited for Hill’s characters. As I said before, we get multiple perspectives, and she provided a unique enough voice for each that I immediately knew who’s narrative we were experiencing.
For fans of horror and psychological thrillers, I recommend taking a ride in NOS4A2.
NOS4A2 by Joe Hill narrated by Kate Mulgrew will send shivers down your spine as you laugh aloud. Click To Tweet
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