Sunday, April 17, 2016

The Thief of Always by Clive Barker

Ten year old Harvey Swick is as bored as only a kid can get.  The dullness of February is eating at him, and he doesn't know what to do. Whether it's school or home, Harvey is bored beyond belief and nothing anyone can do, can make it better. Or so he though.

When a strange looking man, going by the name of Rictus, appears at his window, promising to fulfill his wish for fun, he jumps at the chance.  Rictus takes him to Holiday House, where all four seasons take place in a day; and Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas all happen within 24 hours.  It's a place where dreams come true, every gift is available, and everyone is just a tad bit creepy.

If Harvey was just a little older, and wiser for that matter, he may have realized that if something is too good to be true, it probably isn't, and that everything has a price.  The question is, will Harvey be able to figure that out before it's too late. 

I've talked about this before, but one of the worst aspects of book blogging has been my inability to go back, and reread some of my favorite books. Preblogging days, there were books I would read at least once a year, never getting tired of them.  The characters were long term friends, and getting another chance to delve into their worlds, was like a homecoming for me.  The Thief of Always by Clive Barker has been one of those books for me for a very long time, and it's one that I've sadly neglected since I've started blogging.

Don't get me wrong, it's not one I've forgotten about.  It's actually appeared on the blog twice now. The first time was in 2012, when I chose to examine the main villain of the piece, Mr. Hood, as part of my Favorite Fictional Characters feature.  One day, young Harvey Swick will be joining him in that feature.  The second time was in a post I did last year, where I looked at how some of my ex-boyfriends have influenced my reading.

When I decided to come back to blogging, I made a promise to myself, that I was gong to start rereading some of my favorites.  And this was the first one I felt I needed to pick back up.  Being able to escape along with Harvey to Holiday House once gain, was so much fun.  I reveled in his playing, lazing in the hot summer sun, dressing up for Halloween, gorging on all his favorite foods, and opening his Christmas presents.  I felt his desire to get lost and embrace the culture that Holiday House seemed to offer.  I shared in his growing sense of distrust, as he realized that things weren't quite as good as they seemed.  My heart broke, along with his, when he realized the full price he has to pay for his freedom.  And I cheered for him as he fought back against Mr. Hood, to reclaim his life, and the lives of so many others.


bermudaonion said...

Your description doesn't seem near as creepy as the cover.

Katherine P said...

This sounds absolutely wonderful and what a premise! This is definitely a book I would like to read. I do know what you mean about blogging getting in the way of rereading. There are so many books that I really in truly love that I haven't been able to revisit because there's always new and shiny with a deadline that ends up getting in the way. Thanks for the reminder to pick up some of my old favorites and for adding this to my TBR. I'd never heard of it but it sounds like one I'd really enjoy.

Bellezza said...

I know just what you mean about not going back and rereading books now that we're blogging about them. What is it about this 'hobby' (bad word, can't think of another right now) that is joyful but pressureful at the same time? At least for me. There's an unwritten law in my mind that says read more, post consistently, and sometimes it's too much.

As for Clive Barker, I know him not at all, but I've been meaning to read his work.

(Thanks for visiting Dolce Bellezza, and your tweets. xo)

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

I know! I'm going to try rereading by audio... one day. LOL I haven't made it yet. Right now audio has been helping me catch up on books and series that I've wanted to try.