Joe Hill: The Fireman (Review)

Joe Hill

(Joseph Hillstrom King) (1972 – ) Son of Stephen King and Tabitha King

Joe Hill, born in 1972 as Joseph Hillstrom King, is an American writer of speculative fiction. Hill is the second child of the authors Stephen and Tabitha King. His younger brother Owen King is also a writer.

Author Website

In a world overtaken by a deadly and dramatic new virus, Harper is determined to live long enough to deliver her baby. But when all it takes is a spark to start a deadly blaze, she’s going to need some help from the mysterious fireman.


I have to admit to only ever having read NOS4A2 and also not being a fan of Steven King or that type of novel, and yet when the chance to read this book came along i was at the front of the queue. NOS4A2 was such an interesting read i wanted to see what came next from Joe Hill.

This story isn’t what i expected, the globally apocalyptic pandemic is a riveting enough story, the imagination behind this complex virus and how its spreads and consumes humanity is astounding. But that’s not even the meat of the book, the true genius of the story is the people, the community, how the structure of humanity breaks down and polarizes in extreme circumstances. All of this is told in an intimate and personal fashion from the perspective of one woman’s journey, told in a compelling humorous style.

This book is utterly addictive, sleep was the only things that made me put this book down. Everything in this story draws you in, in the same way that a great TV box set serial hooks you, draws you into the plot, takes you through a wide ranging emotional roller coaster, and then forces you to watch the ride all the way to the end regardless of sleep.

a real contender for book of the year


Locke & Key 1. Locke & Key (2008) (with Gabriel Rodriguez) aka Welcome to Lovecraft 2. Head Games (2009) (with Gabriel Rodriguez) 3. Crown of Shadows (2009) (with Gabriel Rodriguez) 4. Keys to the Kingdom (2011) 5. Clockworks (2012) (with Gabriel Rodriguez) 6. Alpha & Omega (2014) Locke & Key Master Edition Volume 2 (omnibus) (2016)


Heart-Shaped Box (2007) Horns (2009) NOS4A2 (2013) aka NOS4R2 The Fireman (2016)


Heart-Shaped Box / 20th Century Ghosts / Horns / NOSA2 (2014)


20th Century Ghosts (2005) Road Rage (2009) (with Stephen King and Richard Matheson) Four For Fantasy (2013) (with Brian Aldiss, Joanne Harrisand Richard Christian Matheson)

Graphic Novels

Joe Hill’s The Cape (2010) (with Jason Ciaramella, Nelson Daniel and Zach Howard) The Cape: 1969 (2013) (with Jason Ciaramella and Nelson Daniel) Joe Hill’s Thumbprint (2014) (with Jason Ciaramella and Vic Malhotra) The Wraith (2014)


Gunpowder (2008) 20th Century Ghost (2009) Abraham’s Boys (2009) Better Than Home (2009) The Black Phone (2009) Bobby Conroy Comes Back from the Dead (2009) Dead-Wood (2009) In the Rundown (2009) Last Breath (2009) My Father’s Mask (2009) Pop Art (2009) Voluntary Committal (2009) The Widow’s Breakfast (2009) You Will Hear the Locust Sing (2009) The Cape (2012) Throttle (2012) (with Stephen King) In the Tall Grass (2012) (with Stephen King) Thumbprint (2012) Twittering from the Circus of the Dead (2013) Best New Horror (2014) Wolverton Station (2014) By the Silver Water of Lake Champlain (2014)

Anthologies edited

Shadow Show (2012) (with Eddie Campbell, Mort Castle,Dave Eggers, Harlan Ellison, Maria FrAihlich, Neil Gaiman, Alice Hoffman, Charles Paul Wilson III, Audrey Niffenegger, Sam Weller, Sam Wheeler and Charles Yu) The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015(2015) (with John Joseph Adams)


World Fantasy Best Collection nominee (2006) : 20th Century Ghosts

Bram Stoker Best First Novel winner (2007) : Heart-Shaped Box

British Fantasy Society Best Novel nominee (2008) : Heart-Shaped Box

Macavity Awards Best First Novel nominee (2008) : Heart-Shaped Box

Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature Best Book nominee (2015) : Locke & Key