Horns has a silly grabber of a premise: The protagonist, Ig Perrish, wakes up after a night of heavy drinking and doing bad things — he can’t quite remember what — to find that he has horns growing out of his forehead. It’s not long before Ig figures out that everyone he meets is compelled to confess their deepest sins and darkest desires to him, and he can grant them permission to act on them. He is literally becoming the devil on their shoulders.
What I liked about it: There wouldn’t be much of anywhere to go from here, except Hill takes us into Ig’s back story, so we can care more about him and his girlfriend, Merrin, who was raped and murdered about a year ago and is the center of the novel’s strange events. Hill’s writing is easy to read and suspenseful, but unfortunately, things fall apart a bit in the third act (despite some wonderfully grotesque scenes featuring snakes). While not as good as his debut novel, Heart-Shaped Box, Horns is still a fun read, especially around Halloween.
You might like it if: You’re a horror fan. Stephen King is Joe Hill’s dad, and their writing is very similar.