I am a little overwhelmed right now. There is adrenaline in my veins and my heart is pounding in my chest as I turn the last page of The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda. Wow, all I can say is wow. I was introduced to this book through fellow book bloggers and it is every bit as amazing as they said it was.
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?
Fukuda did an amazing job sucking in his readers. Any obstacle or flaw I saw in his writing or story was immediately overthrown by his awesomeness. For example, the premise of the hunt is what the Hunger Games would be if it lived up to the origin of its name, except its vampires hunting humans or hepers to digest their juicy, succulent flesh. Even though I immediately spotted the similarity, I didn’t compare it one bit to Hunger Games. The stories are simply in two completely different categories. Another thing that gave me room for pause was the strange and bizarre actions of the vampires in this story: the clicking, the twitching, the slobbering, and the strangest: elbows in armpits in place of making out? However, no matter how perplexed I was by the weird behavior, I was in Fukuda’s world. It’s his house, so I just needed to sit down and enjoy the ride. And boy, what a ride!
I was absolutely fascinated by the lead character, Gene. It was nice to read from a male perspective for once. Every once in a while I need a little more testosterone in my life, and Gene is awesome. I was immediately placed into Gene’s shoes. I felt his fear, his hunger, his thirst. Fukuda’s descriptions of Gene’s physical needs were poignant and detailed. I loved it. From the overwhelming fear to the goose bumps brought into sharp focus, Fukuda delivered an amazingly worded adventure. I was kept at the edge of my seat waiting for the inevitable betrayal of Gene’s human body. It was so exciting!
I particularly enjoyed the way Gene spoke in first person plural: We scratch our wrists; we snap our necks, etc. It reminds the reader that Gene is always watchful, waiting to see what others will do so he can respond in kind to hide his humanity. The writing is clever and witty. I absolutely loved it, you can tell it was written by a nerd of sorts who appreciates good humor.
“With my legs feeling like lactic acid, I push for the exit, ignoring the mathematical certainty of my own demise. That is the exact phrase as it enters my turbulent head: the mathematical certainty of my own demise.”
–The Hunt Page 239
This book is unlike any I’ve ever read. Fukuda’s take on vampires is extremely original. (Scratching your wrist instead of laughing or smiling? Come on, who thinks of that!) I was impressed that I never thought to contradict his world of vampires. So often, we as readers, have a preconceived notion of vampires because of what we’ve previously read. With The Hunt, I was so drawn in that I didn’t think to question anything. I took everything Fukuda wrote as truth and it was extremely rewarding.
Conclusion? Read this book people!
The second book, The Prey, comes out in early 2013. The story ends with so many questions, I can’t wait to see them hopefully answered in the next book!