What a fitting book to complete my Cannonball on for this spooky season! The Pram is a short story by one of Stephen King’s sons. I think I’ve read other Joe Hill stories and not really loved them, but I liked this one a lot.
We start out with Willy and Marianne moving to a farmhouse in Maine after they suffered a miscarriage. Marianne was so depressed and lifeless that Willy wanted to get her out into the fresh air and away from their old life filled with memories of their loss.
The new house and location seems to be helping Marianne, but Willy starts to realize (or not actually realize) that he was hurt by the loss of their unborn baby more than he thought. He was so caught up in Marianne’s grief he didn’t really fully feel his grief.
Willy starts walking to the local country store for supplies almost daily. It’s about a mile away from their new house, and he loves the bridle path he passes through to get to the store. The owner of the store is genial and welcoming and offers Willy an old baby carriage (the pram!) to cart his groceries back to his house in. It’s kinda moldy and decrepit, but he figures that the groceries are in plastic bags, so it’s fine. On the first day he feels like he hears a baby cooing from inside the pram.
Shockingly (just kidding) things get darker and weirder from there. Willy is so desperate for a baby that he’s kind of ok with a baby monster. If I can find any more Joe Hill short stories I’ll definitely read them!