Friday, April 6, 2012

Review: The Hunt

Author: Andrew Fukuda
Release Date: May 10th 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster AUS / St. Martin's Griffin US
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon / The Book Depository

Against all odds, 17-year-old Gene has survived in a world where humans have been eaten to near extinction by the general population. The only remaining humans, or hepers as they are known, are housed in domes on the savannah and studied at the nearby Heper Institute. Every decade there is a government sponsored hunt. When Gene is selected to be one of the combatants he must learn the art of the hunt but also elude his fellow competitors whose suspicions about his true nature are growing.

Humans no longer dominate the world. Our kind are nearly extinct, while another has risen to the top of the food chain. And 17 year old Gene is not one of them. He's a human, a heper, playing a dangerous game where every day he pretends he's like everyone else. He goes through the motions - the fake fangs, the meticulous shaving, constantly pushing down his own emotions in fear of letting slip the hint of a smile or a frown. His good looks draw unwanted attention, but he tries to downplay his intelligence, because in order to survive he needs to fly under the radar. If people notice him, they may see that bead of sweat on his forehead and realise the tantalising scent of heper is coming from him. He just wants to be normal and in this world, normal is like them. It's understandable, this desire, because it has got to be so tiring, so lonely living the life he does in solitude. His family have all gone and so it's just him, never sharing his humanity with anyone, constantly having to guard his secret. It's a sad way of life and you can't help but feel for him. But I can't deny there were a few moments when I was shaking my first at him, he's obviously adapt at the lying game, I just wish he hadn't lied about something to certain people!

Because fate so obviously has not had it's fill of cruelty against humanity, Gene is one of the lucky, lucky citizens whose numbers are selected in the lottery. The grand prize? Why, he's given the opportunity to partake in The Heper Hunt! Where the last remaining humans (secretly raised and studied at The Heper Institute) will be unleashed in an exhilarating game where the lottery winners get to hunt them down. The winner is determined by who devours the most humans/hepers. So not only is Gene going to have to hunt down his own kind, but the veil of secrecy he's hidden behind is beginning to thin and he has to work extra hard to make himself as un-heper-like as possible. The other hunters are growing suspicious.... and they're hungry with desire for some tasty human meat.

Gene's not entirely alone as he and the other hunters go through weeks of preparation for The Hunt. One of his classmates was also selected, Ashley June. A girl he once shared a brief, but lingering and intimate encounter with. A girl he has paid attention to every day since, but has never allowed himself to get close to. A girl who will sooner eat his heart if she knew the truth, than say the words, "I love you." I went through a range of emotions with Ashley, from suspicious to frustration to intrigue and to appreciation. As we grew to learn more about her, she presents many different and very surprising shades to her character...

I love the deliciously disturbing new creatures Andew Fukuda has brought to life. They're not specifically given a label, Gene just refers to them as 'normal people' because to him, they are the normal ones. They hold an essence of both vampire and zombie, with their uncontrollable taste for human flesh, aversion to sunlight and heightened senses, but they have their own unique and eerie quirks, like their way of laughing or what equates to a make-out session for their kind. Their bodies are obviously wired differently to ours, so stimulation doesn't work the same way. I found it fascinating to uncover their habits, strenghts and flaws. Yes, they sickened me, they ARE disturbing, but there's something so intriguing, so captivating when it comes to well-crafted creepiness.

Forget every book that has brainwashed you into thinking vampire-like creatures can be kind, soulful beings, tormented daily with the horror of their inner monster. Andew Fukuda holds nothing back as he paints a gritty, ugly and downright creepy new monster who has overtaken our world, one that relishes in it's bloodlust and disturbing lack of empathy. The Hunt is as thought-provoking as it is action-packed and entertaining. In a world where humans are nearly extinct, we do not turn away in fear, but rather fall deeper into this haunting story of our own demise, eager to see what will happen next, desperate for the last children of our race to fight on for survival, to beat the odds, because what we as humans all yearn for the most is hope. Even if that hope is so dangerously hard to find when you have an army of blood-crazy beasts hot on your heels.

4/5 Golden Apples!


  1. EEEEEEE! SO EXCITED TO READ THIS BOOK!!! It's been a while since I read a book from a guy's POV and Gene sounds like AN AWESOME CHARACTER!

    I need to stalk my mailbox next week. And you know the reason why! ;) Hope The Hunt comes in next week so I can read it!

    Awesome review AS ALWAYS, Brodie! ♥

  2. The Hunt sounds ridiculously good. I need this book in my life. Right now!

  3. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH this book sounds so GOOD. <3 <3 I can't wait to get my hands on it! I think I prefer the old cover to this one, but I guess this one is a lot more gritty and so kind of depicts the story better. ;) ;)

    BUT THE PLOT. IT SOUNDS SO INTERESTING. And yes, we need more guy POVs in YA! I'm currently reading The Son of Neptune where Percy is the main character and I missing reading from a guy's perspective. :/ Definitely should look into getting this one sometime then!


  4. I really enjoyed this one! Ashley June definitely was a very interesting character, I'm still not sure what to make of her. I definitely agree that the 'creatures' were both captivating and horrifying. The ending for this one totally killed me though, I can't wait to see what happens next. Great review :)

  5. AWESOME REVIEW, BRODIE! I was so excited when I saw that you had posted this because I just finished the book a few days ago and I knew you were reading it too and I was so curious what you thought about it.

    I loved how creepy and unique it was! I'm so tired of people falling in love with vampires, this was such a refreshing change. And the cliffie ending! AAH! Can't wait for the next book.

    Also, TOTALLY unrelated, but I just reread all of my Harry Potter reread posts and your comments made me laugh. And also I really really want to read Harry Potter now. There were many moments when I was itching to open the books and reread certain passages but I COULDN'T BECAUSE I'VE PACKED THEM ALL AWAY IN A BOX! So sad.

    Hey, are you liking The Waiting Sky so far? I wish we lived closer so I could come steal (*ahem* borrow) it when you're finished. :)

  6. I didn't LOVE this one, but I thought it had some fantastic elements that I'm sure will evolve into great things in the upcoming installments. I loved Andrew Fukuda's fresh take on the vampires. How about that scratching, eh? Haha, great review, Brodie!

  7. Great review, Brodie! I read this book a few weeks ago (my review is coming soon). For me, while the book was interesting and offered something new to the vampire genre, but I found I didn't LOVE it as much as you did. But despite that, I can still definitely see something great coming up in the future books but yeah. Glad you enjoyed it!

  8. ...please tell me you didn't write this sleep afford in the wee hours of this morning... Because... Ummm... Brodie.
    It's amazing.
    Uh...If I was excited Before, it has nothing on now. Eeeeeeee! Have you ever seen I Am Legend? Err, yeah, not a great film, BUT. It's based on a story called Omega Man, and it was actually a lot different. The Things in IAL are actually meant to be vampires, and the main guy is fighting against the extinction of his species and this awful new race, and apparently it ends on this brilliant note of ambiguity... Like, is the main guy really in the right trying to destroy or 'cure' the species that is now the predominant and dominant lifeform on the planet? It turns out they're actually quite happy... Perhaps HE has been the bad guy all along. ANYWAY, my point is: this sounds AMAZING! I love that this is kind of similar to that... But different. Gene's just wanting to survive and BELONG. I mean, how much is that just totally The human condition. Wanting to belong, even when you kind of hate yourself for it? I mean, no matter how cruel and bit by and horrid the popular kids are, you still want to belong, right? LOVE it.

    Aaaaaah! Brodie, your review was perfect. Can't WAIT to read! Xx

  9. I'm been reading some pretty good reviews for this one. It sounds like it's maybe a little dark and gritty for my tastes, but I'm on a blog tour for it next month, so might check it out! :)

  10. awesometastic gracious slendid review brodie lol

    i read this one / and i so loved it
    i loved the gritty niss and the ooo so gross and fascinatingly creatures / and yea i hate that ciff hanger/ i want book two now lol


  11. Oh my gosh, a world where vampires are the normal people? That is so cool!! x) And I LOVE how you say that Andrew Fuduka doesn't use the whole all-vampires-are-bad-except-this-handful-of-them bit that's so common in vampire books nowadays -- sometimes you just want vampires to be the ACTUAL bad guys all the way through, and it sounds like this author pulls it off perfectly! ;) I'd probably shake my fist a little at Gene too because I hate it when characters lie for any reason, but he still sounds great and so does Ashley June!

    Amazing AMAZING review as always, Brodie! :) <3 May the hearts be with you!!

  12. This sounds SO good. I love how the non-humans are the 'normal' ones, that's fantastic. I quite like the thought of how gritty is it. Great review Brodie!

    The Cait Files

  13. Ahh! A world where vampires are not only in control, but are the bad guys?! I can't wait to read this book now! Thanks for the great review! And is this book the beginning of a series or just a standalone?

    1. It's a series! I'm not sure how many books exactly, but there is definitely a sequel. If there wasn't, I'd be raging because it ends on a cliffhanger! haha

  14. Did I just read VAMPIRES? and ZOMBIES? Oooohh FINALLY. I think I'm about to read a book featuring REAL vamp-like creatures<3 (seriously? Vampires who are kind & soulful beings? Give me a break! WHAT HAPPENED TO THOSE TRADITIONAL/DARK/MURDEROUS VAMPS? HUH?) Oooohh I seriously CANNOT wait to read this! (Ehh...I hope my copy arrives soon ;S)
    Oh, and I'm looking forward to meeting GENE and ASHLEY! (and of course, those disturbing new creatures Andrew Fukuda has introduced!) Eeeee! I feel like I'm going to LOVEEE this already! Amazing review, Brodiee! I'm so excited to start this now <3

  15. This one sounds so original and unique! I have this ARC on my shelf and I'm waiting to read it. :) I'm glad you enjoyed it! The dark and monstrous vampires sound refreshing and the multi-layered characters are so up my alley. I love your review, Brodie! It addresses all the important points and is incredible well written, as usual. I'm excited to pick this one up! :)

  16. awesome review!!! :D I love this blog, new follower!! And thank you so much for the lovely comment you left on my blog!!!

    Happy reading!!,
    Beth xx

  17. I am so intrigued by these new non-humans! Honestly, I love the sound of the story. Want to read this one even more now, after your review! It's a shame about our cover though...I much prefer the US one. Oh well! Fab review :).

  18. How is it possible that you make EVERY book sound like THE MOST FASCINATING BOOK IN THE UNIVERSE? I mean, even without your influence, this one seems unique and creepy and intriguing but your review certainly doesn't hurt things :)

    "Well-crafted creepiness."

    LOL. I know exactly what you mean and I love it. I can't wait to discover more of the quirks of this "normal" creature that Andrew Fukuda has created.

    I actually get kind of a The Immortal Rules vibe from it but maybe that's just because I'm reading it (PAINSTAKINGLY SLOWLY). Both have humans trying to survive in a creepy creature world, I guess :)


  19. *shivers* I feel like I have to look over my shoulder now.

    AND PEOPLE THOUGHT TWILIGHT WAS BAD. Well, let's give the mike over to Gene and Ashley, ya'll, because they Fukuda takes the biting-flesh-and-feeding worries to A WHOLE NEW LEVEL. I JUST KNEW THERE WAS A REASON I WANTED TO READ THIS BOOK. I am forever fascinated by the undead and undead-like creatures certainly fit in with that (so are they only mostly dead? XD.

    I'm curious about these creatures. I too want to explore their habits and... processes and THINGS. Reading this should be a shuddersome and strange pleasureful event, which should only be read in the daylight OF COURSE :D


  20. Eeeekkk! I SO WANT THIS! And you're review makes it sound AWESOME! I love the cover too! Great review. Donna xoxo

  21. This book sounds so awesome! I love that you say the creatures are vampire/zombie-esque! Really unique and something I'm so looking forward to learning more about!

  22. I haven't seen this cover before but I prefer it to the other one! I have read some mixed reviews on this book but I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it. I love the sound of these new creatures the authors has created! I'm looking forward to reading this myself now. Awesome review! :)

  23. Brodie..why do you keep pining me with this one I wonder?! ;) Yeah, yeah, I know I'm just out to find someone to blame when I'm out buying yet another book. But how can I help myself when you write such excellent reviews.

  24. Spot on review, Miss Brodie!This book calls for a rather epic review.

    I have just spent 3 hours writing mine, mostly staring at computer as so many things need to be said without saying too much..ha! I am looking forward to book 2 as there are things I need to know in my head that put things to bed.

    A very intriguing book and frightening book:D

    Yussss I am afraid the are goooonnnneeee!!!Mind you I like my meat well done..eeeepppp!!!



  25. Ok, I wasn't sure if I was going to like this book, but now I know I'll love it! You make it sound awesome! Please don't ever stop writing reviews! I do love them! :D


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