20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill

Joe's first collection.

Postby Dana_Jean on Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:58 pm

Oh man! I gotta catch up. Joe needs to catch up too.
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Postby Betsy_Boo on Tue Jan 29, 2008 3:57 pm

Dana Jean wrote:Oh man! I gotta catch up. Joe needs to catch up too.


I can wait...I just don't want anyone to forget this one. I really loved it.
"We'll always have Paris."

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Postby Lou_Sytsma on Fri Feb 08, 2008 2:12 pm

Finished the book. Congrats Joe there are some stellar tales in there. Chris Golden really nailed this collection in his foreword. Loved them all. The last story - Voluntary Commital - was a great way to end the collection.

BTW Stephen R. Donaldson is using a similar story device/character trait in his Last Chronicles of Thomas Convenant - though the payoff has yet to come.

And Pop Art is just unreal. At times the story would begin to make me roll my eyes but you always masterfully reeled me back in.

Thanks for the stories. Looking forward to your future endeavours.

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Postby Jane on Wed Apr 23, 2008 4:17 pm

can you believe I am just now reading this?? I dug it out of a box this morning so I could sit in the sun and read a little this afternoon...loved the first 2 stories! but when I ran inside to answer the phone, the glue came off the back cover and peeled off! aargh...so I stuck it inside the back cover so it wouldn't get lost.

were the stick-ons a cost saving measure by the publisher? I really prefer a full dust jacket myself.
"Every day takes figurin' out all over again, how to fuckin live" - Calamity Jane, Deadwood
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Postby LauraK on Wed Apr 23, 2008 4:27 pm

Me too, Jane. My back cover wanted to peel off pretty easily. I much prefer a dust jacket. But I did like the look of the book.

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20th century ghosts

Postby skimom on Fri Apr 25, 2008 8:02 am

I think dust jackets are pretty, but get in the way. This book is visually eye catching because it doesn't have one. I read HSB a while back and thought it was just okay-I actually liked Owen King's book better and thought he might be the better writer-but I loved this collection. The writing struck me as sharper than HSB, which seemed to me to drag in parts. Anywho-my two cents worth!
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Postby sybil on Fri Apr 25, 2008 2:21 pm

wow - i'm just the opposite. i thought HSB was better than either owen's joe's short stories. but...i readily admit that short stories are NOT my favorite form of story.
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Postby skimom on Wed Apr 30, 2008 12:19 pm

I had a conference this weekend, so I decided to re-read HSB-Mea Culpa! I must have been altered when I read it the first time. I take back what I said (well, about HSB anyway-I still really liked 20thCG). I'm not normally a huge short story fan either, but when the writing's good, the writing's good.
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Postby sybil on Wed Apr 30, 2008 1:09 pm

when the writing's good, the writing's good.


exactly!
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Postby val04463 on Wed Apr 30, 2008 7:19 pm

Sybil..I was thrilled to see you say you don't like Short Stories all that well..I have the same opinion. I just get my mind wrapped around something and it ends...
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Postby sybil on Thu May 01, 2008 2:58 pm

exactly! i just finished "the saved" that i got from eBay, and was thoroughly engrossed in the story and his writing, and then....i was just standing out in the snow, all alone and saying, WTF? where's the rest? LOL! i usually feel like the author got this really good idea and started it and then got writer's block or lost interest or something, when they don't really have an end. i'm sure it's not that way to them or to others, but i just have always felt that way. glad to know i'm not the only one...i've always been kind of ashamed for not "getting it."
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Postby skimom on Thu May 01, 2008 3:49 pm

Sometimes I think that is the idea (conscious or not) of a short story-drive by literature, if you will. Not to wax too philosophical, but it's sort of a reflection of most of life-by that I mean that for most of the people/events of your life, you just don't have a great amount of time on which to concentrate. You just get a quick glimpse of the whole story, and it has to suffice. Maybe that's why so many short stories don't seem as successful as novels-your relationship with your spouse, best friend (the novel) is almost always more engrossing than that of your dentist (the short story), but sometimes that person's quick story can catch your attention and linger for most of the day. Or maybe I'm full of crap-your call!
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Postby sybil on Fri May 02, 2008 11:30 am

hmmm, that's an interesting analogy skimom. i see what you're saying there. i'm not as invested in my dentist as my sister or hubby...i've said before that i don't get so invested in a short story...not enough time to care about a character.

except with joe's writing, it's almost MORE frustrating, because he DOES make me care about a character quickly, so when i don't get sated, it's worse than with other authors.

i don't care so much for sex without orgasm, either. ;)

dunno if you're full of crap otherwise. :D
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Postby skimom on Fri May 02, 2008 11:55 am

Oh, I'm full of theories-their general crappiness is up to those on whom I inflict said theories. :lol:
Vis-a-vis short stories, the ones I like best are those for which I get that connection, and even if the end leaves you hanging (i.e., The Black Phone), it is satisfying on some level. The problem with most s.s. is that you either don't get the connection, or can't be satisfied with the ending-or both. One of my favorites is "Gotcha" by Ray Bradbury. You care within a few lines, the ending is up in the air, but it's okay on an emotional level. One of the only ones that consistently can do that for me is Stephen King. Another is Ramsay Campbell. I have to add Joe Hill to the short list now-his s.s. are really engrossing.
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Postby sybil on Fri May 02, 2008 12:06 pm

most of king's are good, i agree. there are a some clinkers tho, that make me wish i had the time back. not many (he's got SO MANY s.s.!!), but a few.
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