by Joe Hill

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Review

Vic McQueen can find things. With the help of her trusty bike and the Shorter Way Bridge (which collapsed in 1985, but lives on in her inscape), she can get to any lost object.  Throughout her adolescence, she travels the bridge, until she goes looking for trouble, and finds Charlie Manx. Her encounter with Manx and his Rolls Royce Wraith leave her questioning her sanity and spiral her into an adulthood full of searching for ways to escape the horrors she can't forget. Manx's mission in his ever so  long life is to spirit children away to Christmasland, where they slowly turn into monsters (a series of creepy accomplices dispose of any grown ups who are in the way). When Manx returns to Vic's adult life and kidnaps her son, Vic has no choice but to travel those roads again, no matter what the consequences. Joe Hill creates memorable characters (my favorite, of course, being a librarian with a set of prophetic Scrabble tiles), vivid landscapes (both outer and inner) and acknowledges his famous dad (Stephen King) with various references to his books that readers of King's cannon will enjoy (I'm sure I missed a lot of these). You'll never hear a Christmas song the same way again.

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