21st Century Ghosts - Joe Hill discussion

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Joe Hill Short Stories/Novellas > 20th Century Ghosts

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message 1: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) So... Let's get this started! :)

What was your favorite story in 20th Century Ghosts? What did you like about it?

Least favorite? What DIDN'T you like about it?

Were there any you just didn't understand? (There was for me!)

Let's discuss!


message 2: by Chris , The Devil Inside (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 130 comments I liked all of the stories, actually. But like you, I did feel that I wanted more from several of them. That's actually not unusual with me and short stories though. I tend to do better with the novella length ones, because they satisfy more.

That said, "Voluntary Committal" was the novella of this bunch and it hit dead on.

"Best New Horror" was very intriguing but was one that really left me wanting more story. I think that was intentional on Joe's part though, with this one.

I also felt that way about "My Father's Mask". It was beautifully written and creepy/weird, but I would have liked to have seen more pages of story here.

I guess it's a good sign that we want more rather than the opposite. It shows that his writing is getting our attention.


message 3: by Kandice, Felina is the best (new)

Kandice | 111 comments I didn't understand My Father's Mask. Like Chris (and I think everyone else, too) I felt it was worded beautifully, I just didn't understand. I read a lot of sci-fi, so I am used to not completely understanding every single, little thing. It doesn't bother me enough that I can't still enjoy the story.

Becky, I know you really liked that one, so...WHAT DID IT MEAN?


message 4: by Kandice, Felina is the best (new)

Kandice | 111 comments My very favorite was Better Than Home. I think I am in the minority there. I know it wasn't a true "beginning, middle, end" narrative, but the way Hill showed us the boy's problems, the love, irritation and just plain comraderie he encountered was lovely to me. When King writes about children, those end up being my favorite stories. I guess it will be the same with Hill for me. He is very good at capturing a child's feelings, thoughts, heart.


message 5: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) I don't know! I didn't say I understood it. Just that I liked it. I enjoyed the creepiness of it, and the way it made me feel.


message 6: by Kandice, Felina is the best (new)

Kandice | 111 comments It was really creepy. I think that the fact that he can creep me out without me really understanding is pretty amazing. I may be completely off base, and I only saw the movie once, but this story reminded me of Eyes Wide Shut. Has anyone seen that? Does anyone agree?


message 7: by Chris , The Devil Inside (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 130 comments I could see the comparison to Eyes Wide Shut..it's weird enough, with the masked sex cult mysteries.

I agree on "Better Than Home" too. While it wasn't a story with plot/conflict/resolution so much, it had a definite feel to it that was awesome.


message 8: by Kandice, Felina is the best (new)

Kandice | 111 comments I've always wondered how King kept such a perfect hold on seeing and telling things from a child's perspective. He didn't lose the ability as he grew older. Hill has the same skill and I hope he keeps it.


message 9: by Betsy (new)

Betsy Boo (betsyboo) | 30 comments I mentioned this in another post, but "My Father's Mask" made me feel like I had fallen into someone else's nightmare.

As for favs, I loved "Pop Art" and "Voluntary Committal" best. Speaking of "Pop Art", British film-maker Amanda Boyle did a short adaptation of it. I think you can watch it on-line. I'll see if I can find the link.


message 10: by Chris , The Devil Inside (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 130 comments Betsy wrote: "I mentioned this in another post, but "My Father's Mask" made me feel like I had fallen into someone else's nightmare.."

Very nice way to describe that....it does have that nightmarish cast to it, while being distantly removed....


message 11: by Betsy (new)

Betsy Boo (betsyboo) | 30 comments Couldn't find where you can watch the whole film but you can watch a couple of snippets here:

http://academyfilms.com/flash/#/acade...


message 12: by Chris , The Devil Inside (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 130 comments Did anyone have the limited edition? If so, it has an additional story, "The Saved" along with a deleted chapter for "The Black Phone" and some of Joe's "Story Notes", which might be cool to read.

I had the standard release that I found at the library: 20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill


message 13: by Felina (new)

Felina So joining this conversation uber late I just started this one on audio so I'm not sure the name of the stories.

The first one stopped right when it was getting good which I didn't really like but I can see how it worked with the story. I thought perhaps I hadn't downloaded the audio file correctly and had a short panic attack.

20th Century Ghosts gave me the major wigs. Guess I'll never be going to the movie theater alone again. Unless, of course, I need a make out session with a hot ghost.

I LOVED 'Pop Art'. How could someone write about an inflatable boy just like it was a normal thing and make me care so much by the end? Hill you rascal.

Not finished with the rest yet.

Kandice - I never noticed your mod title. It made me smile!


message 14: by Kandice, Felina is the best (new)

Kandice | 111 comments Felina wrote: "So joining this conversation uber late I just started this one on audio so I'm not sure the name of the stories.

The first one stopped right when it was getting good which I didn't really like but..."


I'm seeing this four years later! You're still the best.


message 15: by Chris , The Devil Inside (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 130 comments It's been 4 years???

Wow.


message 16: by Kandice, Felina is the best (new)

Kandice | 111 comments Two months shy, so yeah, four years. Crazy, right?


message 17: by Chris , The Devil Inside (new)

Chris  (haughtc) | 130 comments Where did that time go?


message 18: by Kirstie (new)

Kirstie (kenglish95) Only read Best New Horror so far but loved it. I really want to draw Button boy and the bit in the house at the end was so creepy.


message 19: by Kandice, Felina is the best (new)

Kandice | 111 comments I'm audio-ing this, so hope that hearing it instead of reading it will help me to understand My Father's Mask.


message 20: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) | 101 comments Chris wrote: "Did anyone have the limited edition? If so, it has an additional story, "The Saved" along with a deleted chapter for "The Black Phone" and some of Joe's "Story Notes", which might be cool to read.
..."


I don't have the limited edition (bummer!), but I did find online a chapbook of "Saved". I think it was ebay...a few years back. It's a good story, not great.

Now, I want that limited edition!!! :\


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