I ripped through this book in two days. It just drew me right in and would not let me go. The writing style is very similar to Stephen King, which is only natural since they are father and son. So maybe thats why I went through it so quick, because I like Stephen King's work.
This is the story of a young man named Ignatious who after a night of binge drinking winds up with horns growing out of his head. He is also now able to coax the innermost thoughts and secrets from people. Just by seeing him, they spill they're guts and ask permission to do what they're hearts desire and society says is a no no.
These encounters are the most interesting, as it gives us a glimpse at the veneer of civility that we and the world are coated in so that we get along and don't kill too many of each other off.
We come into Ig's life one year after his girlfriend was murdered to the day, as the night he binged was the night of her death. Ig is still coping with her loss, as well as the loss of his friends and family because he was the prime suspect in her murder and was never officially cleared so things never really went back to normal. Its chilling to see how his family REALLY thinks of him once he get his horns. Everything that seemed so normal and ok to him is just turned on its head.
What I like most was the evolution/devolution of humanity in this book. Ig becomes more and more devil/demon-like in appearance as the book progresses. His horns grow bigger, he communes with snakes, and his skin turns red. The great thing is that as he devolves physically, he evolves emotionally. He has the power to let a lot of bad stuff happen, and instead he uses it to right his relationships with people as well as have them move on from him.
We also see the devolution of hummanity in his best friend Lee. Lee is a congressman's aide, poster ivy-league looks, and at first he acts them, but as the story progresses we see his actions and thought patterns devolve into something belonging to a creature more fitting of Ig's physical appearance than Lee's.
I liked the flash backs least. Hill starts off the story in the here and now, and flashes back to Ig and Lee's past, obviously for character development. I read it all, I knew it was all important to the story, but I could not help but think, "ok, great, but whats happening NOW?"
My favorite part was Ig's relationship with his girlfriend and how it develops throughout the book. At first you get the picture of a fairy tale romance that ended tragically. Then you see that all was not well between the two and you wind up hating her for a bit, until you get closer to the end where you fully understand her motives for her actions and can sympathyze with both her and Ig.
An excellent choice for King fans. This book will have you running the emotional gambit and enjoying every second of the ride.