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Early review: The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda

The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda (The Hunt #1)

Egalley thanks to St. Martin's Press

Synopsis from Goodreads
Don’t Sweat.  Don’t Laugh.  Don’t draw attention to yourself.  And most of all, whatever you do, do not fall in love with one of them.

Gene is different from everyone else around him.  He can’t run with lightning speed, sunlight doesn’t hurt him and he doesn’t have an unquenchable lust for blood.  Gene is a human, and he knows the rules.  Keep the truth a secret.  It’s the only way to stay alive in a world of night—a world where humans are considered a delicacy and hunted for their blood.

When he’s chosen for a once in a lifetime opportunity to hunt the last remaining humans, Gene’s carefully constructed life begins to crumble around him.  He’s thrust into the path of a girl who makes him feel things he never thought possible—and into a ruthless pack of hunters whose suspicions about his true nature are growing. Now that Gene has finally found something worth fighting for, his need to survive is stronger than ever—but is it worth the cost of his humanity?

Release date: 8th May 2012.

Amazon  US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository US/UK


* * *
What an utterly terrifying, repulsive and brilliant read! If you are hoping for another Kagawa or God forbid, Meyer... FORGET IT! In fact, GET AWAY from this book NOW. This is more in lieu with 30 Days of Night, I Am Legend and Priest.

That's right, you caught the gist.

Vampires here are an absolutely alien race of predators. They are fascinating and at the same time revolting. They don't have names, eat raw meat, don't laugh or show any emotions, don't sweat, can't swim if the water is higher than their necks, click and drip saliva to express their excitement or itch their wrists when someone tells them a funny joke.

In fact, humanity has been nearly extinct for more than a few generations. Remaining humans very much like rare animals are studied in Heper Institute, considered dumb and not being capable of any sort of intelligence because vamps can't get close enough to them to study. You see, they can't resist the smell of human. The taste of human meat and blood is considered such delicacy, it drives them mad, and all they want is to devour every last bit of it.

The vampire Ruler is losing his popularity and he decides to provide his "people" with a legendary entertainment, The Hunt. There is a country-wide lottery which selects ten lucky winners to join The Hunt which will exterminate the last humans.

Unfortunately, one of the hunters is Gene, who's been hiding his human nature all his life. The Lottery and consequent training for The Hunt threatens his ruse and survival. He only has few days to come up with a possible plan to escape the fate of the hunted or he will be devoured along with them.

Honestly, if I were Gene I would have offed myself a long time ago. How this boy had survived the incredible tension, the constant alienness, the raw meat diet, the incredible misery of his existence, I don't know.

The tension is palpable and building through the whole book until all is left of you is a raw tingling ball of nerves. There is a scene during the training when the team has to get used to the heper (human) smell, and they are tied to the columns while an old man walks among them. One of the hunters has a knife... He manages to get loose and so are some other hunters... By the time they are finished with the old man there is nothing left but a pile of old clothes. Gene has to witness all of it without being able to do anything. It chilled me to the bone.

The only big drawback of this book is the lack of explanations of what happened to people, how vampires came to be a dominant race and what is happening in the world as whole.

Overall, this is a breathtakingly terrifying thriller ending with a cliffhanger, leaving you desperate to know what would happen next. Recommended to anyone with strong stomachs and a healthy nervous system.

* * *
У меня мороз пробегал по коже, когда я читала эту книгу.

Если вы надеетесь на очередную Кагаву или, не приведи Господь, Мейер, забросьте эту книгу подальше ПРЯМО СЕЙЧАС!  Ожидайте от повествования нервотрёпку в духе Я - Легенда, 30 Дней Ночи и Пастырь.

Вампиры в описанном здесь мире - это совершенно чуждая нам раса хищников. У них нет имён, они спят на потолке, выражают смех, почёсывая запястье, а возбуждение цоканьем и ртом, истекающим слюной. Они отвратительны и страшны.

Джин всю свою жизнь провёл, притворяясь одним из них. 

Практически вся человеческая раса уничтожена, кровь и мясо людей считается легендарными деликатесами, их существование окружено мифами, и насколько миру известно, последняя кучка людей находится под охраной Института, их изучающего. О людях у вампиров то же мнение, что у нас об обезьянах. Они считаются тупыми, неповоротливыми и неспособными к мышлению и разговору. Выяснить обратное вампирам не считается возможным, так как они не могут подобраться к людям близко, чтобы узнать правду. Как только до них доносится запах людей, инстинкт берёт вверх, и всё, что они хотят  -это поглотить человека до последней косточки.

Теперешний правитель страны объявляет последнюю Охоту на людей из Института, чтобы поднять свою популярность. 10 охотников выбраны с помощью лотореи, и несчастный Джин становится одним из них. Теперь у него есть всего лишь неделя, чтобы найти как пережить Охоту, которая разоблачит его обман и превратит его в желанную добычу.

Книга быстрая, и держит в огромном напряжении на всём своём протяжении. Концовка - классический клиффхэнгер, после которого хочется жутко узнать что будет дальше.

Советую всем с железными нервами и таким же железным желудком - они вам понадобятся.


Nina @ Death, Books, and Tea said...

I got this on Negalley, but haven't read it yet. Seems like something I'll look forwards to!

Nina @ Death, Books, and Tea said...

Ps-love the new design.

Mel said...

Wow - this sounds really intense. I love any book that makes vampires scary again...I think I will have to check this out! :)

kara-karina@Nocturnal Book Reviews said...

Nina, thank you! It was a fantastic read!

Mel, I think you will like it, we have pretty similar taste :)

Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer said...

Eek..I thought this was brilliant too..my review won't post till Saturday but I had such fun reading and reviewing it..definitely made my top ten so far this year! *scratches wrist*

Unknown said...

Wo, this sound very dark, I love it! And yay! to alien- like and animalistic vampires! I think I would like this one, it kind of reminds me of the Vampire Empire books, have you read them? They are really dark and gritty too. Loved the review. And check you new design! I like it:)

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