Cover Image: Full Throttle

Full Throttle

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Member Reviews

Overall, a really fantastic set of stories. While not every single one of them wowed me, well over half absolutely stunned me, and I think that’s as good a ratio as you can hope for with such a prolific set of fictions. 

If I had to pick a personal top faves list, in no particular order: Faun, Mums, All I Care About Is You, and You Are Released. And to reiterate: that is leaving out several that I loved! I am not surprised though. Honestly, just another brilliant work by a favorite author. 

Thanks very much to NetGalley and HarperCollins for this ARC.
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What a fascinating introduction to Hill's short story telling. I was enthralled by the characters and Hill did not disappoint!
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I picked up Joe Hill’s writing because his father is my favorite author. I continue to read Joe Hill because his work is awesome. There is clearly something in the DNA makeup of this family because they can all write excellently. 
“Full Throttle” features thirteen short stories that range in topic and genre.  My two favorites were of course ‘Throttle’ written with King and ‘Late Returns’, being a librarian motorcyclist will do that I suppose. I would recommend these stories to anyone who enjoys sleepless nights, thinking outside the box and can appreciate something well written. 

“Throttle” stuck with me because I often find myself thinking how horribly automobile drivers are around motorcycles and how easily anyone riding a motorcycle could lose their life due to vehicle driver error. Unless you have rode a motorcycle, you do not often consider motorcycles and the people on them. I started this story and thought of an older movie I had seen before, Joy Ride, staring the late Paul Walker. The story begins introducing a seedy motorcycle gang with a gruesome background at the beginning of a questionable journey.  Once the truck driver realizes the ‘small world’ connection he has with this meth dealing motorcycle gang, he plans to right their wrong his own way. I loved this story and the ‘ah-ha’ connection at the end. 
 
“The walk to the library was the first time I had not felt ugly with grief in months. It felt like I had been paroled.” 
“Late Returns” was my favorite because books. I do not really feel like I need to say more but I suppose I will because I want everyone to know how much this will resonate with book lovers. We follow a man who recently was fired from his semi-driving job after the unexpected death of his parents. He returns to his hometown to clean out his parents’ home. He finds a very overdue book and decides to return the book to the library. While at the library, he finds himself taking a job driving the very interestingly painted bookmobile. I will just get this bias out of the way…My husband is a truck driver; I am a librarian without a library science degree. That part of the book is real life. Of course, time travel could be real and just be kept under lock and key really well by the government. I hope it is a thing by the time I pass on because it would be the ultimate afterlife if I could continue to read new works…even more so if it is by Joe Hill. 

Thank you Netgalley for the prepub book.
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A fantastic collection, diverse and chilling. Joe Hill is a true talent in his own right and adept at many styles, but Yay! when  he turns his sights to classic horror. (Be sure not to overlook the introduction.)
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I’m not normally a fan of short fiction, but I gave this a shot since I love Joe Hill. Pretty much every story in here is a winner. Hard to find anything to complain about, really.
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I absolutely loved this collection of short stories. Joe Hill’s dad (Stephen King) writes some of the best short stories around...so when I saw that Hill had his own new collection, I got really excited. Full Throttle does not disappoint. There’s something for everyone. Fantasy. Horror. Thriller. 

Standout shorts (for me) were: Dark Carousel, By the Silver Water of Lake Champlain, Late Returns (my absolute favorite of the whole bunch), and In the Tall Grass (which I had read before, but enjoyed reading again).

I’m excited to go and dive into Hill’s past novels. Come October, I will be purchasing a hard copy of this title for my own collection.

One last note...introductions can be tricky and Hill managed to knock that out of the park too.
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Full Throttle is Joe Hill’s latest compilation, and it does not disappoint! The stories have a much broader range than Strange Weather did, and Hill continues to ply his craft with depth and subtlety as he grows as an artist. I so enjoyed the forward in the book where he spoke of his childhood with two authors; how special that time was, and is even now. Full Throttle takes you for the full spectrum of irony, revenge, horror, noir and karma, with more switchbacks than a mountain road with no guardrails. Don’t miss this ride.
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I don't read a lot of Joe Hill stuff, I usually gravitate more toward's his dad, Stephen King.  However, I wanted to expand and try something new and this book was amazing.  It reminds me of the stuff his dad writes but with a different flare.  Different in a good way.  Highly recommend if you are a Stephen King fan!  If not, and you are looking for something scary and unique, this is also the book for you.
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I loved this book so much. Short story writing is a unique skill, and Joe Hill has it. Each story is unique and engaging -- and quite different (in tone, in voice, etc.). I particularly loved the introductory and closing essays. These are a wonderful way to stitch together short stories that were all originally published in disparate places.
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I really enjoyed this collection of short stories. Everything I've read so far by Joe Hill has not disappointed me. I've only recently started getting into reading short story collections and I was really excited to pick up Full Throttle because I absolutely loved his previous novella collection, Strange Weather. All of the stories are pretty grim but they're also exciting and horrifying at the same time. One thing that I really loved about this book is that Joe Hill provides commentary at the end of the book for each short story. I found it really interesting to learn how he came up with the ideas for each story and what authors and locations inspired him. I highly recommend this collection to any horror and thriller fans!
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The masterful Joe Hill returns with FULL THROTTLE, a collection of thirteen short stories.


 The thirteen tales range from dark fantasy to horror to sci-fi, but they all share the same relentless drive and sense of momentum that Hill has become known for. The book opens with a lengthy introduction, which reads more like a chat with really interesting friend. Hill relates several anecdotes about his career, childhood, and growing up as Stephen King's son, including one story that he means to be funny, but is actually quite alarming. (The story involves King driving his young son around while drinking beer and throwing the cans out the window.) Hill also include story notes at the end of the book, which range in length from one sentence to a few pages apiece. The stories themselves vary in quality, with the worst of the bunch opening the collection.


 THROTTLE is a collaboration between Hill and Stephen King (One of two in the book), and is the weakest story in the collection. Originally published in a Richard Matheson tribute anthology, THROTTLE is a tribute to Matheson's DUEL, with a vengeful trucker stalking a motorcycle club along a desolate stretch of desert highway. The characters are all despicable and interchangeable, and if you've seen/read DUEL, there's nothing new to see here.


DARK CAROUSEL and LATE RETURNS are Hill channeling his famous father, which he does perfectly. Both are pure Stephen King; DARK CAROUSEL tells a pitch-black tale of supernatural vengeance that could have been penned by King early in his career, while LATE RETURNS is a gentle remembrance of the ghosts of the past, which is reminiscent of King's more recent output.


 THE DEVIL ON THE STAIRCASE and TWITTERING FROM THE CIRCUS OF THE DEAD both play with form as they tell their tales. DEVIL is formatted in such a way that the sentences and paragraphs resemble ascending and descending staircases, while TWITTERING is told entirely in a teenaged girl's tweets, as she slowly realizes the the out-of-the-way circus that her family stumbled upon may have more going on than meets the eye.


 FAUN and BY THE SILVER WATERS OF LAKE CHAMPLAIN both have their literary roots in other authors. BY THE SLIVER WATERS... was originally published in a Ray Bradbury tribute anthology, and is a beautiful tribute to the legendary author. Hill tells a wonderfully understated story about two children who stumble upon the corpse of a lake monster, and debate what to do with it. Bradbury would have been proud. FAUN is a spin on C.S. Lewis' NARNIA books, and features a millionaire who leads rich hunters into an enchanted wonderland to hunt mythical beasts. FAUN is the most frustrating story in the book. While almost every story is outstanding, this is the one that I most wanted to continue.....If Mr. Hill were to expand this into a novel, or sequelize it, I would not object in the least.


 THIUMBPRINT and MUMS both have a militaristic bent to them: THUMBPRINT follows a disgraced vet who comes home from the desert to find herself stalked by a mysterious person sho is leaving papers with thumbprints on them in and around her home, and MUMS follows a young boy whose father is planning an act of domestic terrorism.


 WOLVERTON STATION is  a whimsically dark story that evokes echoes of English folk horror, while ALL I CARE ABOUT IS YOU ventures into futuristic sci-fi, as a young girl, depressed about how her family's recent financial downturns will effect her birthday, finds solace in the company of a robotic friend-for-hire.


 The book includes a second Hill/King collaboration, IN THE TALL GRASS,  another story that has the King family DNA written all over it. If the story is a little too derivative of Scott Smith's THE RUINS, well.....at least it is a well-told, riveting derivation. Another story that ended with me wanting more.


 Hill closes out the collection with YOU ARE RELEASED, which really hit me hard. The story follows a plane full of people who discover that World War III may have broken out while the were airborne. He doesn't take up a lot of space with this tale, but he manages to create a plane full of real people, and avoids the easy stereotypes. Closing the book with this story really gave me a lot to think about. (This book also includes the literary equivalent of a motion picture after-credits scene, so stay tuned.)


 Hill writes a great novel, but his short stories are where he really excels. In his introduction, Hill surmises that he probably has another few dozen short stories in him before he calls it a day.....I hope it turns out to be a lot more than that.


 HarperCollins provided a review copy.
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Does anyone else finish a book by their favorite author and immediately want to write a review about it because you loved it so much that you want what you type to be an accurate portrayal of how you feel, but you ALSO like need a minute because HOLY CRAP that was a lot!!

Because that's what I deal with every time I'm blown away by Joe Hill's newest book. And let me just take a moment to appreciate the fact that the day that I finally join the ranks of NetGalley reviewers, I happen to get an ARC for this? Because holy crap. Thank you, NetGalley. I owe you my life. 

In this amazing collection, there are 13 short stories that have captivated me as a fan and reader. All of them dealt with different themes (as short stories do), but what they all had in common was that they were unforgettable. And I have to take a short moment to express my undying love for "Late Returns", which, after reading only a little of the story, almost made me cry at work because I'm a big dumb baby. I think everyone that has lost someone would love to be driving that tricked out library-mobile and come across their own Late Return. 

Because I'm new to this, I'm afraid to say anything that might spoil a book that doesn't come out until October of this year, but to ANY fan of the weird, gruesome, paranormal, and even sometimes hilarious: try this book. (I know I'll be buying a copy as soon as it hits the shelves. Gotta keep the collection growing.)
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It is rare to consider the introduction to a book as part of its review, but this one deserves special mention, as it is a short story unto itself.  In it, Joe Hill pays homage to the writers who have influenced him, most notably (and most lovingingly), his parents, Stephen and Tabitha King.  How wonderful to be raised surrounded by writers (and readers), who encourage and support.  While growing up in the shadow of the world's most beloved horror fiction writer could have been daunting, Hill sees it as a blessing and describes his relationship with his father (and mother) in a way that every parent hopes for their child.  Joe Hill is a terrific writer in his own right and after this introduction, I was more than ready to dive into this diverse collection of short stories.  He does not disappoint.  In particular, I loved "Late Returns," as it fulfills every librarian's wish to find the perfect book for every patron.
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Joe Hill has done it again.  Brilliant prose.  Terrifying concepts.  This is a collection that keeps you thinking about it long into the night.

Can't wait to recommend to library patrons that are fans of short stories and the King family of authors!
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This collection of short stories was better than his last collection, STRANGE WEATHER. It's hard to pick a favorite among them, but I know LATE RETURNS has a lot of highlights of appreciation, while IN THE TALL GRASS will stay with me for a while.
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