Author: Andrew Fukuda
Genre: Young-Adult, Dystopian
Series: The Hunt #1
Hardcover, 293 pages
Published May 8, 2012 by St. Martin's Griffin
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Source: Publisher, and I bought a hard copy for myself
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?
I remember hearing about The Hunt long before it was to be published, people were raving about how good this book was all over the blogosphere. The premise for the book sounded interesting, I’ve really enjoyed the dystopian genre so I couldn’t wait to start the book. About 48 pages into the book I wanted to give up! Why? It was wayyy too similar to The Hunger Games, and I couldn’t stop myself from comparing the two when I read it. I mean this is not a long book at all, almost 300 pages. The whole lottery/game, hunt, training, grooming the potential winner for the media, even the mention of the frilly dress lady all reminded me of The Hunger Games. A couple of chapter later, things started to pick up, the author did a great job keeping the trepidation going as Gene (main characters) fights to keep his identity hidden. I kept wondering when they will figure out there’s a heper (human) in the mist of vampires.
The vampires in The Hunt are the scariest and at the same time weirdest vampires I have ever read about it. They are insidious blood-lust predators, going crazy just at the sight and smell of hepers. Their equivalent to laughing is scratching their wrist, when showing affection they rub their elbows into the other person’s armpits…everything is just so different and bizarre. The characters in this book are so one-dimensional, including the main character Gene. While the book kept my attention when it mattered, I didn’t feel anything for the characters. Like I said before the author did a good job with keeping the suspense at time, but the writing felt so monotonous. A good point that other readers brought up was the lack of back story. When we are first introduced to Gene, he’s already on his own living among the vampire society…we didn’t even know his name yet! I think his name was not mentioned till a little over 100 pages (sigh).
Overall The Hunt was a good but not great start to a new series. The ending was left on a cliff hanger with a big revealed relating to Gene. Would I read the next book? Maybe. I might borrow it from a friend or library just because I want to know what happens next. There is still a lot of unanswered questions about the vampire society, the hepers that lived in the dome, and Gene’s love interest Ashley June. I would recommend this book to readers who enjoy dystopians, but if you’re looking for an action packed/fast pace novel…then this might not be the book for you.
**Thank you St. Martin's Griffin for sending me an e-Arc of the book**