Thank you to Edelweiss and the publisher for providing an ebook copy in exchange for an honest review. I also bought the book and I finished reading on that copy.
Let me start off by saying that I am a MAJOR Joe Hill fan. I love all of his books and I have been anxiously awaiting The Fireman for a while. When I saw the summary (which you may have noticed is LONG) I just knew that The Fireman was going to be epic and holy cow it was! I could write a super lengthy review that's full of nothing but Joe Hill fangirl praise, but I won't. I'll be a good book reviewer and discuss the book properly. Just know that I'm freaking out on the inside.
I am completely fascinated by this Dragonscale spore that Joe Hill has created. It's such an intriguing and unique idea and then it was executed perfectly. I really want to know how he came up with the idea for Dragonscale by the way. I am surprised how well thought out the Dragonscale is. I think I expected that what it says about Dragonscale in the summary would be the Dragonscale in it's entirety. I was wrong and thank goodness for that! There is more to the Dragonscale and I found that in general the Dragonscale spore added something more and different to a story that could have easily slipped into recycled horror crap territory. I think the Dragonscale kept everything moving in a different direction than what was expected. Not only is the Dragonscale unique to this book (as far as I know anyway), but there are a few good twists and turns as well.
When I first began reading The Fireman I have to admit I was concerned that Harper would get on my nerves. Doesn't she sound a bit annoying from the summary, or is that just me? In some ways I felt like she really should have annoyed me, but she didn't. I ended up really liking her character and she is a lot deeper than I expected her to be. Oh, and of course THE FIREMAN is kick ass!! He definitely is my favorite character even though I liked a decent amount of the characters. A few of the other Camp Wyndham (I see what you did there Joe, naming the camp that name! Tehe.) people were kick ass as well! I think this book really showed me more than ever that Joe Hill is damn good at creating vivid and believable characters. One thing I love about Stephen King (sorry can't help but bring him up in this review) is the way that he can make up these characters so well that they really come alive. Then I sit there thinking-
"I know a person JUST like that!" "I GET who that person is!" "I can IMAGINE them so vividly!"
My point is that Joe Hill is just as good at doing this. In the Fireman, due to it's epicness, you really get a chance to see Joe Hill's skill in this area. The entire group of characters have distinct personalities. You just KNOW each of the characters because they all have a unique voice. Not every author can do this well.
Another thing that I really enjoyed about The Fireman is that it's so FAST PACED. This novel is over 700 pages long and yet it just flies by. I would have finished it even sooner, but I was trying to savor it. Yeah, that didn't last long. I just had to keep reading and find out what would happen. This may be a long book, but it's very engaging and it keeps your attention. I could not put it down. I ended up binging the last half to three quarters of the book in one day because I needed to see how everything ended. Oh, and the ending was EXCELLENT of course! There are a few things I guessed early on, but there are also some twists that I did not see coming at all. I'm very pleased with how the book ended and I won't say anymore than that.
Overall The Fireman is epic and mind blowing. It's everything I wanted it to be and MORE. Even though it didn't scare me at all, it's definitely Grade A horror. There are a few things that are a little creepy and I'll be thinking about this book later for sure. The whole book is just so well done and there isn't anything bad for me to say about it. So if you're interested at all I really hope you give it a shot.
I recommend The Fireman for horror fans of The Stand, Swan Song, and The Midwich Cuckoos. I also recommend it for all Joe Hill fans. Okay, I recommend this for any horror fan in general. I should also recommend this for anyone who likes kick ass books. People, just trust me and read this please.