Jude Coyne is a middle-aged heavy-metal superstar who’s given up performing and retired to the country to live with a series of interchangeable, psychologically damaged Goth girls. Jude himself has a troubled past, and while he’s a better man than the father who once smashed his hand in a door to keep him from playing guitar, he’s emotionally adrift enough to hurt the people around him without really noticing. Fittingly for a man who’s dead inside, Jude collects occult items, and Heart-Shaped Box begins when he buys a dead man’s suit from an eBay-like website—a purchase that (buyer beware!) includes the ghost of the “good ole boy” who once wore it. When the suit comes out of its heart-shaped box, looking like something Johnny Cash might have worn, the ghost comes, too, and Jude soon realizes that the murderous spirit is related to someone from his past. Worse yet, the ghost won’t quit until Jude—and anyone who tries to help him—is dead.