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Horns [Paperback]

Joe Hill
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (146 customer reviews)
RRP: £8.99
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Book Description

2 Jun 2011

Ignatius Perrish spent the night drunk and doing terrible things. He woke up the next morning with one hell of a hangover, a raging headache . . . and a pair of horns growing from his temples.

Once, Ig lived the life of the blessed: born into privilege, the second son of a renowned American musician, and the younger brother of a rising late-night TV star, Ig had security and wealth and a place in his community. Ig had it all, and more - he had the love of Merrin Williams, a love founded on shared daydreams, mutual daring, and unlikely midsummer magic.

Then beautiful, vivacious Merrin was gone - raped and murdered, under inexplicable circumstances - with Ig the only suspect. He was never tried for the crime, but in the court of public opinion, Ig was and always would be guilty.

Now Ig is possessed with a terrible new power - with just a touch he can see peoples' darkest desires - to go with his terrible new look, and he means to use it to find the man who killed Merrin and destroyed his life. Being good and praying for the best got him nowhere. It's time for a little revenge; it's time the devil had his due.

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Horns + Heart-Shaped Box + 20th Century Ghosts
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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz (2 Jun 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575099992
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575099999
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (146 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,704 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Joe Hill is a recipient of the Ray Bradbury Fellowship and the winner of the A.E. Coppard Long Fiction Prize, William Crawford, World Fantasy, British Fantasy, Bram Stoker and International Horror Guild Awards. His short fiction has appeared in literary, mystery and horror collections and magazines in Britain and America.

Author photo (c) Shane Leonard

Product Description


'Simply put, Horns is fantastic - the author has managed to weave an incredible tale that combines elements of thriller, horror and fantasy and yet has become something very believable, convincing and utterly compelling.' ***** (SFBOOK)

Book Description

The NEW YORK TIMES-bestselling author of HEART-SHAPED BOX returns with HORNS: a relentless new supernatural thriller.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Devil Inside 15 Jun 2011
I think that Joe Hill has managed to tap into a genuine primal fear with this novel. What if you could read their minds with a single touch? Now part of you might be thinking, `this would be great'. But I'm going to have to disagree. Could there be anything worse than knowing exactly what the people around you think of you? I am sure the reality would be a lot like the situation depicted in Horns. You would immediately start to learn things that you just didn't ever want to know. I don't think it would take long to discover that underneath the thin veneer of society a lot of individuals are way freakier than they appear on the surface. Ig Perrish learns this the hard way as he descends into his own private hell. The good news is that the reader gets to follow him, every step of the way.

I should stress that it's not all doom and gloom though. There is some welcome dark humour particularly when Ig tries to master his new powers. He takes some amusing, if slightly petty, revenge against those that have slighted him in the past. I couldn't help but feel that all the various characters got exactly what they deserved in this regard. Almost without exception, everyone wants to see Ig just disappear, so it seems only fair that they get what is coming to them.

This is the first novel by Joe Hill that I have read and I was heartily impressed. The main protagonist is placed in a terrible situation and I was compelled to follow his journey. The novel is very dark but also surprisingly life affirming. There are some flashbacks that cover Ig's first meeting with Merrin and the beginning of their relationship. These add additional depth to the characters and made it easy to empathise with Ig's predicament.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Devilishly good! 20 Dec 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Well I bought this on the recommendation of a friend. I knew nothing about it and didn't even read the blurb on the back of the book and I have to say, for me that is the way to read it!

It's a wonderful book from the very stylish and cool cover to the unpredictable and bonkers plot.

I will give nothing away other than to say pretty much anything can happen, the easily offended and possibly Daily Mail readers should steer a path round it! And it has :-

A Great story, lots of twists and turns, it's sad, funny, gripping and has a cast of great fully realised characters. It's not really a horror or ghost story...I don't quite know how to catagorise it in fact, and I'm not sure I need to. Just read it and see what you think.

I have read a few great books this year, The Brother's Grossbart and Killer of men to name two but this is right up with them. Joe Hill is an author to be watched and has a real gift for story. Enjoy the ride!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Flawed, but still enjoyable 10 Jun 2013
Ignatious Perrish (Ig) is the prime suspect in the rape and murder of his girlfriend, Merrin, who died a year ago. No charges have ever been brought, but everyone, including his own family, believes him to be guilty. On the anniversary of Merrin's death, Ig goes out on the mother of all benders, urinates on the Virgin Mary, and wakes up the next morning with horns. He soon discovers these horns have the power to make people reveal their darkest secrets to him and after having some fun with it, he inadvertently begins to discover more than he bargained for about Merrin's murder. In between present day chapters, the tale flashes backwards to Ig's teenage years, telling the story the will eventually end in tragedy to explain what is happening to Ig now.

The story is a great idea and the sprinklings of humour are very well done. However, where it loses me is when it suddenly diverges to flashback and stays there for chapter after chapter with no warning. There is no segue, leaving the jump feel out of place. There is also a fair amount of what seems like filler. I feel the book could have been a hundred pages shorter without really losing anything. There is excessive description of people and events that aren't actually relevant to the tale. I found myself skimming quite a lot.

This isn't a mystery as we know whodunnit fairly early on. I suppose it could be a coming of age tale, but the flashbacks feel too disjointed for that to be fully realised. It seems like a book that could have used a firm hand from an editor. The sudden changes in setting, time, place and tone don't really work for me and made it difficult for me to settle in to the story and properly care about the characters.

The ending felt rushed and didn't offer anything that felt like a resolution for me.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Horns wow 11 Sep 2012
By Trish
Format:Kindle Edition
This was amazing. Im a reader not a writer and therefore i dont have the words to put how i felt about this book into action. All i can say is how happy and refreshed i was after reading this incredible story. Its about time i found a new favourite writer and Joe Hill your now it. Keep writing. Going to start on Heart shaped box later, cant wait.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great read - but not if you're prudish! 13 Oct 2010
By Kerrie
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A great premise for a story and it didn't disappoint. I enjoyed this book it was well written, cleverly executed and relevant, and although the genre is horror there was also comedy, love, tragedy and mystery.

Joe Hill has an ability akin to his father - he makes you care about all the characters, and even when the antihero, Ig, did some questionable deeds I still found myself rooting for him all the way.

How often have I invested a lot of time and effort into a book only to be let down by a rushed, disappointing and unsatisfactory ending? Well not this time thank goodness, Mr Hill skillfully drew his characters to a very satisfying climax.

A warning - There are some rather graphic scenes both macabre and sexual in nature so if you are easily offended this book is not for you!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Definitely worth a read. In fact, this is one of very few books that I think I would read again in the future.
Published 2 days ago by kdsgibg
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 3 days ago by Me
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Published 3 days ago by Alan Morgan
4.0 out of 5 stars Horns
Wonderfully weird!
I decided to read this book after seeing Daniel Radcliffe in an interview, as he has taken the lead role in the film of the same title. Read more
Published 4 days ago by Tracy Garvey
5.0 out of 5 stars This is a fantastic book. I saw the film coming out and ...
This is a fantastic book.

I saw the film coming out and wanted to read the book first and I was absolutely enthralled by it.
Published 10 days ago by B. J. Peck
5.0 out of 5 stars Just read this devil of a book! (Pun Intended)
This is a brilliant novel, worth buying and reading. A rather touching story, layered characters and entertaining read, which never drags! Read more
Published 12 days ago by Chasing The Dreamzz
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark, twisted and original.
Horns is the first book by Joe Hill that I have read. With the film being released I wanted to read the book before watching the movie, because as everyone knows the book is always... Read more
Published 13 days ago by Scarlet Aingeal
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant !
What a great book - I could not put it down :) I don't know what to read now !!!
Published 15 days ago by lammar_2003
4.0 out of 5 stars By the seat if your pants read.
I've only just discovered Joe hill, and I am so pleased that I did. This is a Brilliant book. Once you start reading you can't put it down.
Published 17 days ago by candy
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Everyone in my family has now read this,well worth the cost,
looking forward to seeing the movie.
Published 17 days ago by joseph bamber
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