The worlds he conjures are full of terror and mischief. One of the novellas in his latest book, “Strange Weather,” tells of a gun massacre. Another recounts a bout of inclement weather that sends lethal shards of crystal raining down on unsuspecting residents of Boulder, Colo.
Joe Hill — a pen name used by Joe Hillstrom King, the son of Stephen King — has an eye for the macabre.
When Hill trained his eye on “Jaws,” 40 years after Steven Spielberg’s tale of a man-eating great white shark first smashed box-office records in the summer of 1975, the writer saw something that prickled his skin with goose bumps and jolted him from his seat at a movie theater in Newington, N.H.
It wasn’t the marauding of the marine antagonist that stupefied him, but rather the fleeting appearance of an extra cast in a crowd scene approximately 54 minutes and 2 seconds into the film. The young woman seemed to have the same visage he had recently seen in a composite sketch of the victim of a grisly murder that has stumped police on the far reaches of Cape Cod for 44 years.