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The Hollow City Hardcover – July 3, 2012
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“The beauty of the prose, mixed with the depth of characterization, gave the haunting, first person narrative a human touch….” ―Brandon Sanderson, New York Times bestselling author on I Am Not a Serial Killer
“This dazzling, unput-downable debut novel proves beyond a doubt that Dan Wells has the gift.” ―F. Paul Wilson on I Am Not a Serial Killer
“Brilliant! Full of unforgettable characters, creepy thrills, and dangerous twists you won't see coming.” ―Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author on I Don't Want to Kill You
“Fans of Jeff Lindsay's Dexter series will welcome Wells's gripping debut.” ―Publishers Weekly on I Am Not a Serial Killer
About the Author
Dan Wells is the author of I Am Not a Serial Killer, Mr. Monster, and I Don't Want to Kill You. He lives in Orem, Utah, with his wife, Dawn, and four young children.
Top Customer Reviews
The story follows Michael Shipman, a man with a history of mental health issues who was found huddling under a bridge. His delusions have progressed past what is manageable and his psychiatrist has not choice but to upgrade his condition from anxiety to schizophrenia and put him in the care of the local mental hospital. To top it all off, there is a serial killer on the loose and all the victims are connected to Michael in some way, shape or form. Not a good day for Michael. The problem for Michael is that while many of the monsters he sees are just a symptom of his condition, some of the monsters he sees are real, and they have a plan.
This is a pretty cool story, a reasonably simple story, but one that relies on the unreliability of the main character to add in the layers of complexity. The plot is not the driver in this story, sitting itself firmly in backseat while the focus is put on Michael and his struggle to determine what is real and what isn't. There is a really cool supernatural conspiracy going on in the background, but the problem is that Michael's struggles are so interesting for so much of the book that I found myself not really caring about the supernatural conspiracy.Read more ›
As always, Dan Wells shines is in his portrayal of his mentally disturbed protagonists, and his portrayal of Michael Shipman, paranoid schizophrenic, is spot on. Michael’s journey through reality, both of his own making and of the one that we live in was heartbreaking. Understanding that there really are people in the world who see terror in the most simple objects (clocks, cell phones, TV’s, paintings, etc.)...well, yeah - it’s upsetting.
I know that some readers were put off by the supernatural elements in Wells’ John Cleaver books (though it didn’t bother me), and while The Hollow City also takes a “supernatural twist”, I think this time around the ending is integrated much more smoothly and convincingly.
Here's my only real gripe: I wish that Wells had written this book for a YA audience, because the pace of the novel would have benefited from tightening it down via the lens of a YA editor...that sounded more complicated than I meant. Lemme try that again: fantastic premise, utterly gripping protagonist, very simple writing style, marvelous ending - it’s got all the ingredients for a fresh take on the dystopian YA scene...but it’s got too much padding. About half of the way through the novel, the action begins to plod. Fortunately, because the writing is so simple the slow parts are still a breeze to read. Then the ending kicks in and the sh!t gets real.
Dan Wells' The Hollow City features another creepy, fantastic and sympathetic protagonist dropped into a great story. Take a day or two and plow through this quick read - it's totally worth it.
Dan Wells is a master at characters, you are totally on their side when you truly should be scared of them. John from I am not a Serial Killer trilogy an all time favourite character of mine was trying not to become a serial killer and Michael Shipman, wow, a brilliant mind with a twist of crazy, trying to convince everyone including himself he wasn't crazy.
Michael was an unreliable character, this was what made the book, he was delusional with paranoia tendencies, scared off all electronics. You didn't know what was reality, is it just in his mind or is he trying to manipulate everyone. You also start to believe in the science fiction futuristic possibilities he discusses. I also enjoyed that there were numerous characters, all playing a huge part. We have the police detectives following the Red Line Killer story, Michael's Doctors, the reporter, his father and girlfriend. Different parts of everyone's story was totally unexpected, great twists thrown in.
I was enjoying The Hollow City almost as much as I am not a Serial Killer trilogy but once we got to the last 25%, the meaning of The Hollow City, I was hit with science fiction/dystopian style and it killed the story for me. I was MAD, why ooh why, sigh. I was deflated by the ending.
I am still a fan and will always recommend the trilogy but this one just didn't do it for me at the end. And I love psychological thrillers, which this is, Dan Wells totally messes with our mind. I recommend you still try it.
The question if Michael is truly insane or has been setup is a brilliant suspense journey.
I love Dan Wells mind, the way he thinks and puts those creative thoughts on paper, an author I will always try. I didn't read Partials, but it has been labeled Dystopian which I have tried a few times, it is just not for me.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Holy cow this is a good book. Only book I've ever been this interested in. Nobody could tear me away from this book while I was reading. It felt so real. 10/10Published 12 days ago by Jordan Kira
Dan Wells's The Hollow City is perhaps the best horror novella ever written. It's a terrifying, disorienting ride through the psychoses of the world's most unreliable narrator, a... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Jennifer Grey
I'm usually turned off by violence. I hate horror films. But Dan Wells is a master of his craft. Every writer dreams of being able to explain a perspective to someone who would... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Girl Like You
A schizophrenic and highly technophobic man tries to determine what is real while being hunted by "the Faceless Men". Read morePublished 11 months ago by Sam
The Hollow City I've listened to Dan on the Writing Excuses podcast for a while now, but never gotten around to reading his books (bit of a back log). Read morePublished 11 months ago by H. Abreu
This book is not your typical Dan Wells, but yet it is WITH A TWIST. I found myself reading the complete book, even though I didn't want to. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Christy J. Wrenn
This one's going to stick with me. Even setting aside what a fascinating take it has on the idea of an unreliable narrator, it was absolutely un-put-down-able. Read morePublished 15 months ago by David D.
It is a fascinating read. Sometimes believable; sometimes not so much. Still had to read to the end to find out why, what and where. I would read more from this authorPublished 16 months ago by Joyce B.
Constantly leaves you wondering. A few sentences were confusing & I had to re-read to clarify. I'd have never guessed the ending. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Kindle Customer