"At first Ig thought the horns were a hallucination, the product of a mind damaged by rage and grief. He had spent the last year in a lonely, private purgatory, following the death of his beloved, Merrin Williams, who was raped and murdered under inexplicable circumstances. A mental breakdown would have been the most natural thing in the world. But there was nothing natural about the horns, which were all too real.
Once the righteous Ig had enjoyed the life of the blessed: born into privilege, the second son of a renowned musician and younger brother of a rising late-night TV star, he had security, wealth, and a place in his community. Ig had it all, and more—he had Merrin and a love founded on shared daydreams, mutual daring, and unlikely midsummer magic.
But Merrin’s death damned all that. The only suspect in the crime, Ig was never charged or tried. And he was never cleared. In the court of public opinion in Gideon, New Hampshire, Ig is and always will be guilty because his rich and connected parents pulled strings to make the investigation go away. Nothing Ig can do, nothing he can say, matters. Everyone, it seems, including God, has abandoned him. Everyone, that is, but the devil inside. . . .
Now Ig is possessed of a terrible new power to go with his terrible new look—a macabre talent he intends to use to find the monster 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. . ."
I didn't really know what to expect going in when I started reading ‘Horns’ by Joe Hill. I'd seen a trailer for the film but other than that (and reading the blurb) I knew nothing about it. I'm so glad I picked it up though, because this book is amazing!
‘Horns’ tells the story of Ignatius Perrish, a twenty-six year old from Gideon, New Hampshire. One morning, Ig wakes up from a drunken night out with horns sprouting out of the top of his head. He doesn't know how they got there, or if they are even real, but when trying to get help and talk about them Ig finds that everyone starts telling him their deepest, darkest secrets. Also, when he touches people he gets a glimpse of their past sins. And the weirdest thing, they then forget they ever saw him.
Ig is a well brought up boy from a respectable family. His father was a well-known musician in his youth and his elder brother has a successful television show. We come into the story when Ig wakes up with the horns, about a year after his girlfriend Merrin Williams was raped and murdered. Although he was never charged, everyone thinks that Ig was responsible for her murder, however much he protests his innocence.
Through real-time narrative and flashbacks as a reader we piece together what happened to Merrin throughout the novel. The flashbacks are in a jumbled order so we are getting lots of snippets of information all mixed up. Normally I would find this confusing, but this book is written so beautifully that it was so easy to follow. I loved how we were invited to go on this journey with Ig and find out what really happened to Merrin.
I adore the characters of Ig and Merrin. Childhood sweethearts and such innocent souls. Lee Tourneau on the other hand, I despised from the beginning (but in a good way! He’s one of those characters you just love to hate). All the characters were so well written that I cared about them all and really enjoyed reading about their pasts and presents.
Throughout the novel we join Ig on his journey as he discovered what happened to Merrin, all while he is slowly transforming into the Devil himself.
Something I will say about this book though, is that it's not for the faint of heart. If you don't like swearing or the occasional bit of graphic gore then I wouldn't advise reading this book. But if that isn't something that bothers you, then this is a great read and I'd definitely recommend picking it up! I'm looking forward to watching the film now and seeing how well they adapted it.
I would give this book 4.5 stars :)
Have you read this book or seen the film? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
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