#allthebookreviews – Strange Weather by Joe Hill

A highly anticipated October release for the #allthebookreviews duo!

Thanks so much to William Morrow Books for the advanced copies in exchange for our honest reviews.

STRANGE WEATHER by Joe Hill (released yesterday, October 24th, 2017)

As two horror and King family fans, we were ecstatic to get our hands on these copies 🙂

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Chandra’s Thoughts: 3.75/5 stars

I really wish I knew what my problems with short stories were.  I realize they’re one of the hardest things to write – putting in so much into a shorter stature.. but then I’m like just write MORE – give me the FULL STORY.  So, going into this review, let’s just realize that I’m a strange, awkward bird who just prefers the fleshed out novels more. K?

It’s no big revelation that Joe Hill is a fantastic writer – I’ve THOROUGHLY enjoyed his full novels, NOS4A2, Heart Shaped-Box and The Fireman.  When I received this copy of Strange Weather, I was ecstatic!! (If not dubious because of the aforementioned inclination to not care for short stories much.)  What I DID like right off the bat was that this is a short story collection that contains only FOUR stories.  YES! Hallelujah!  Snoopy dance!  I won’t go into what each story is about as I definitely agree with other reviewers that it’s best to go in blind but here’s my rankings for each one which is how I came to my total ranking of 3.75.

SNAPSHOT – meh… very predictable and underwhelming for my taste.  3 stars.
LOADED – probably my favorite of the four – crazy is as crazy does!  5 stars.
ALOFT – I feel like I should’ve loved this more than I did – humor was great but… meh? 3 stars.
RAIN – happy to have ended the book with this one – quite the interesting premise and OUCH – 4 stars.

Please don’t get me wrong, some short stories really just bleed right into my pores and saturates my reader’s soul.  Quite frankly, if i’m going to read short stories, it’ll almost always be in the horror genre and in the King family.

My Thoughts: 5/5 stars

Ever since reading NOS4A2 I’ve loved Joe Hill’s writing. So when I was sent a copy of his newest release STRANGE WEATHER I was very excited to dive in! I have always loved short stories. As someone that isn’t a writer, it always amazes me that authors can really pack a punch or truly creep you out in a small amount of pages (as opposed to a 400+ page novel). This one was a collection of 4 short stories and I don’t think there was I didn’t like. There were a couple standouts, though.

I don’t want to give away too much about each story – since they are short stories I don’t want to ruin too much of the plot! We have SNAPSHOT which brings us to Silicon Valley. A man known as The Phoenician is terrorizing a teenager – he has in his possession a Polaroid camera that has a dark power. With each snap of a photo, it erases your memories. Next up is ALOFT. A man is experiencing his first parachute jump – as if that isn’t terrifying enough to me – he ends up stranded on a solid cloud. Being a castaway up in the sky and not being able to get down. RAIN is more of an apocalyptic story. Starting in Boulder, Colorado the sky opens up with a downpour of nails. What will the population do as this phenomena spreads across the country, and then the world? Finally, we have LOADED. Definitely a more current topic of conversation – a mall security guard bravely stops a mass shooting from happening. But being in the spotlight begins to take a toll on him – not only his is story falling apart, but so is his sanity. He will soon have one last day of reckoning when he reaches for his gun once again.

Joe Hill does an incredible job weaving these stories and characters in such a short amount of time. Each story pulls you in and doesn’t let go. This is one of those authors where I’ll always buy their new books, and I’m never disappointed!

Overall, if you want unsettling and great intellectual horror stories, then you need to pick this one up! Four very different horror stories and all quick reads. Obviously, if you love Joe Hill, then this is one you need to get, without hesitation.

 

Are you a King family fan?

–Jess

 

 

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