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Strange Weather: Four Short Novels
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HarperCollins 2017
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Description

A collection of four chilling novels, ingeniously wrought gems of terror from the brilliantly imaginative, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Fireman, Joe Hill.

"One of America's finest horror writers" (Time magazine), Joe Hill has been hailed among legendary talents such as Peter Straub, Neil Gaiman, and Jonathan Lethem. In Strange Weather, this "compelling chronicler of human nature's continual war between good and evil," (Providence Journal-Bulletin) who "pushes genre conventions to new extremes" (New York Times Book Review) deftly expose the darkness that lies just beneath the surface of everyday life.

"Snapshot" is the disturbing story of a Silicon Valley adolescent who finds himself threatened by "The Phoenician," a tattooed thug who possesses a Polaroid Instant Camera that erases memories, snap by snap.

A young man takes to the skies to experience his first parachute jump. . . and winds up a castaway on an impossibly solid cloud, a Prospero's island of roiling vapor that seems animated by a mind of its own in "Aloft."

On a seemingly ordinary day in Boulder, Colorado, the clouds open up in a downpour of nails—splinters of bright crystal that shred the skin of anyone not safely under cover. "Rain" explores this escalating apocalyptic event, as the deluge of nails spreads out across the country and around the world.

In "Loaded," a mall security guard in a coastal Florida town courageously stops a mass shooting and becomes a hero to the modern gun rights movement. But under the glare of the spotlights, his story begins to unravel, taking his sanity with it. When an out-of-control summer blaze approaches the town, he will reach for the gun again and embark on one last day of reckoning.

Masterfully exploring classic literary themes through the prism of the supernatural, Strange Weather is a stellar collection from an artist who is "quite simply the best horror writer of our generation" (Michael Kortya).

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Street Date:
10/24/2017
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780062663139
ASIN:
B01HXK8LNW
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APA Citation (style guide)

Joe Hill. (2017). Strange Weather: Four Short Novels. HarperCollins.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Joe Hill. 2017. Strange Weather: Four Short Novels. HarperCollins.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Joe Hill, Strange Weather: Four Short Novels. HarperCollins, 2017.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Joe Hill. Strange Weather: Four Short Novels. HarperCollins, 2017.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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        Joe Hill is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the novels The Fireman, NOS4A2, Horns, and Heart-Shaped Box; Strange Weather, a collection of novellas; and the acclaimed story collections Full Throttle and 20th Century Ghosts. He is also the Eisner Award–winning writer of a seven-volume comic book series, Locke & Key. Much of his work has been adapted for film and TV, including NOS4A2 (AMC), Locke & Key (Netflix), In the Tall Grass (Netflix), and The Black Phone (Blumhouse).

      • name: Joe Hill
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fullDescription

A collection of four chilling novels, ingeniously wrought gems of terror from the brilliantly imaginative, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Fireman, Joe Hill.

"One of America's finest horror writers" (Time magazine), Joe Hill has been hailed among legendary talents such as Peter Straub, Neil Gaiman, and Jonathan Lethem. In Strange Weather, this "compelling chronicler of human nature's continual war between good and evil," (Providence Journal-Bulletin) who "pushes genre conventions to new extremes" (New York Times Book Review) deftly expose the darkness that lies just beneath the surface of everyday life.

"Snapshot" is the disturbing story of a Silicon Valley adolescent who finds himself threatened by "The Phoenician," a tattooed thug who possesses a Polaroid Instant Camera that erases memories, snap by snap.

A young man takes to the skies to experience his first parachute jump. . . and winds up a castaway on an impossibly solid cloud, a Prospero's island of roiling vapor that seems animated by a mind of its own in "Aloft."

On a seemingly ordinary day in Boulder, Colorado, the clouds open up in a downpour of nails—splinters of bright crystal that shred the skin of anyone not safely under cover. "Rain" explores this escalating apocalyptic event, as the deluge of nails spreads out across the country and around the world.

In "Loaded," a mall security guard in a coastal Florida town courageously stops a mass shooting and becomes a hero to the modern gun rights movement. But under the glare of the spotlights, his story begins to unravel, taking his sanity with it. When an out-of-control summer blaze approaches the town, he will reach for the gun again and embark on one last day of reckoning.

Masterfully exploring classic literary themes through the prism of the supernatural, Strange Weather is a stellar collection from an artist who is "quite simply the best horror writer of our generation" (Michael Kortya).

reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
      • content:

        "A four-pack of mayhem in this sparkling collection of short novels. . . .Worth waiting in line for, if you're a Hill fan. If you're not, this is the book to turn you into one." — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

        "Hill is not only maturing as a writer of relevantly chilling tales but he is also emerging as a distinct voice for our complicated times." — Booklist (starred review)

        "[I]n times like these, when real-world terrors outstrip our night terrors, how can a novelist possibly compete? Joe Hill, the author of several terrifying bestsellers, rises to this challenge in Strange Weather." — Washington Post

        "[A]nother must-read from a increasingly impressive storyteller [...] Strange Weather speaks to the versatility of Joe Hill's craft, telling deeply disturbing stories in which cataclysmic forces of nature seem like a gentle rain when set against the actions of villains who are all too human." — barnesandnoble.com

        "The Weather quartet unleashes a perfect storm of styles, from a slow-burn thriller to ethereal sci-fi, all told with a consistently strong voice.... Hill whips up emotional moments in all four that strike like lightning and thunderously rumble your soul." — USA Today

        "There are few authors as deft at marrying pulse-pounding action and a sense of inescapable dread than Joe Hill. Fans of his masterful thrillers NOS4A2 and The Fireman will find plenty to love in his new collection of four short novels." — BookPage

        "A striking selection of novellas ranging from the playfully apocalyptic to the wickedly political... [Strange Weather] is a demonstration of [Hill's] range and readiness to tell the hell out of any tale, be it supernatural or straight, silly or completely serious." — Tor.com

        Each selection in Strange Weather is a well-crafted piece of storytelling, with characters to care about and conflicts creepy, mind-boggling and action-packed. — Portland Press Herald

        "It's good to see [Hill] flex his authorial muscles with a different form. Weather changes and we never know what to expect. The same is true for great writers." — Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

        "Joe Hill is one of the 21st century's pre-eminent writers, not just of the dark fantastic, but of American Literature. Strange Weather is a must read." — SFF World

        "Its ideas have powerful emotional and political resonance." — Publishers Weekly

        "The novella form allows Mr. Hill to get you deeply fixed in the setting before the moment everything goes fantastic... All four stories in Strange Weather are just the right length to read at a sitting, one at a time. Horror, they tell us, is only one step away." — Wall Street Journal

        "An essential instant read for Hill's fans and a solid introduction for new readers." — Library Journal

        "One of the strongest overall works in Hill's already illustrious career. . . . An exciting sign of so many wonderful things to come." — Cemetery Dance

        "Hill has a way of turning words to make them glitter, and casually speaking to readers to convince us that the world he presents entirely, physically exists. [Strange Weather] hard to shake for hours after you've finished it." — Guam Daily Post

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        August 15, 2017
        Horrormeister Hill (The Fireman, 2016) offers a four-pack of mayhem in this sparkling collection of short novels.Think climate change is bad now? Just wait until those obsidian-sharp blades of rain cut you to pieces come the next storm. Hill, son of Stephen King, has his father's eye for those climacteric moments when the ordinary turns into the extraordinary--and the sinister to boot. In Rain, a warm Colorado day turns nasty when silver and gold needles begin to pour down. Hill's narrator, ever the helpful neighbor, watches as they rip a woman to shreds: "Her crinkly silver gown was jerked this way and that on her body, as if invisible dogs were fighting over it." Memorable but icky, that. In such circumstances, you can bet that the ordinary norms don't hold; give humans an emergency dire enough, and civil society collapses, presto! So it is in Loaded when a Florida shopping mall becomes the playground of a shooter unusual in more ways than one; what gives the story, which is altogether too probable, creepy luster is the dancing cyclonic firestorm that's heading toward the mall, which may have been what prompted the security-guard protagonist of the tale to add to the death count without the intercession of any apparent conscience. Hill squeezes in some nice pop-culture references along the way, including one to a namesake: "Finally the kid who looked like Jonah Hill had entered the shop, and the shooter, with her dying breath, had put a bullet in his fat, foolish face." Icky again--as it should be for a horror honcho. In homage to "The Illustrated Man," perhaps, in Snapshot Hill imagines an ancient mariner sort of psychopath whose Phoenician-script tats invite onlookers to run away but instead lure them in, the easier for him to tinker with their memories, while Aloft is a pitch-perfect fable that blends Ted Chiang and Aristophanes into an eerie delight. Worth waiting in line for, if you're a Hill fan. If you're not, this is the book to turn you into one.

        COPYRIGHT(2017) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        October 2, 2017
        Hill (The Fireman) delivers on the “strange” in this collection of four novellas, stretching from horror to magical realism to a straight thriller. In “Snapshot,” Hill allegorizes the damage of dementia when preteen Michael must protect his elderly neighbor, Shelly, from the Polaroid Man, who takes away memories with the flash of his camera. He changes genres with “Loaded,” a drama in which gun violence draws together a local journalist who witnessed her adopted brother’s murder by a cop, an adulterous couple with a fondness for guns, and a dishonorably discharged veteran turned mall cop who suspiciously saves the day at a mall shooting. In “Aloft,” a man decides to skydive to impress the woman he loves, but a bizarre crash leaves him stranded on a cloud, where he must face the truth about what loneliness is and how desire can obscure reality. In “Rain,” crystal shards fall from the sky, killing thousands; a woman travels from Boulder to Denver in the middle of the storms to check on her girlfriend’s family, dodging comet cultists and figuring out whether this disaster is related to climate change or chemical warfare. Hill’s collection may not be as horrific as his earlier 20th-Century Ghosts, but its ideas have powerful emotional and political resonance. Agent: Laurel Choate, Choate Agency.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        Starred review from August 1, 2017
        Hill is back with a collection of four short novels that each showcases his talent for mining modern lives for fear. As he notes in the collection's afterword, tales of horror and fantasy thrive at a shorter length, and readers will be vigorously nodding their heads in agreement. These novellas present a foreboding and unsettling view of our world and contain complex and complicated casts of diverse characters. In Snapshot, a grown man looks back on a summer gone by when he found a Polaroid that steals rather than preserves memories; in Loaded, Hill writes his impassioned, heartbreaking, and compulsively readable response to the Sandy Hook tragedy. Aloft is a sinister fairy tale about a macabre world hiding on top of a cloud; and in the final novella, Rain, set in the present time, the apocalypse comes as showers of shiny crystal nails pelt the Earth. These tales are terrifying and compelling, filled with intense anxiety throughout, but it is that final story, set entirely in the real world, that is the most menacing of the bunch. After getting two 700-plus-page novels in a row, fans will be thrilled to take in Hill's malevolent mind through these masterfully crafted single-sitting reads reminiscent of the very best of the short works by giants of the form like King, Gaiman, and Mieville. Hill is not only maturing as a writer of relevantly chilling tales but he is also emerging as a distinct voice for our complicated times.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2017, American Library Association.)

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        September 15, 2017

        Horror does not need to reside in the shadows: it can be as natural as the weather, as these four short works reveal. In "Snapshot," Cupertino, CA, teen Mike crosses paths with a man who is stealing memories with a Polaroid camera, photo by photo. In Colorado, a young woman's life is irrevocably changed when gold and silver needles fall from the sky in the apocalyptic "Rain." "Aloft" sends a beginner skydiver on a cloud-borne journey. And the final story, "Loaded," revolves around a Florida mall security guard who stops a mass shooting and becomes a hero--until an approaching summer blaze forces the truth to break out and the guard to break down. Hill's tightly written prose keeps each novella moving quickly, but the author still incorporates enough details for readers to get inside his characters' minds and to respond viscerally to the events depicted. VERDICT This will be an essential instant read for Hill's (NOS4A2) fans and a solid introduction for new readers.--KC

        Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        May 15, 2017

        This collection of longish short fiction by No. 1 New York Times best-selling master of horror Hill is your chance to get scared to death four times over, as with "Snapshot," which features a tattooed bad guy who can wipe out bits of your memory with a simple click of his Polaroid Instant Camera. With a 200,000-copy first printing.

        Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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A collection of four chilling novels, ingeniously wrought gems of terror from the brilliantly imaginative, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Fireman, Joe Hill.

"One of America's finest horror writers" (Time magazine), Joe Hill has been hailed among legendary talents such as Peter Straub, Neil Gaiman, and Jonathan Lethem. In Strange Weather, this "compelling chronicler of human nature's continual war between good and evil," (Providence Journal-Bulletin) who "pushes genre conventions to new extremes" (New York Times Book Review) deftly expose the darkness that lies just beneath the surface of everyday life.

"Snapshot" is the disturbing story of a Silicon Valley adolescent who finds himself threatened by "The Phoenician," a tattooed thug who possesses a Polaroid Instant Camera that erases memories, snap by snap.

A young man takes to the skies to experience his first parachute jump. . . and winds up a castaway on an impossibly solid cloud, a Prospero's...

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