Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
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?
A big thanks to the publisher on netGalley for accepting my request in reading this book early!
In lines with the dystopian-crazed genre and satisfying those readers of Suzanne Collins's best-selling series The Hunger Games, the debut author Andrew Fukuda has offered up an odd but a mostly interesting new take on vampires and it's far from your typical vampires that you have come to know and love over the years. While there was plenty of things in this book that sparked my entertaining side, however I did have a few issues with THE HUNT along the way as I entered this very terrifying and vicious new world.
Before I get straight into the issues, one of the things I will give the author a lot of credit for was how he reinvented everything we know about vampires - from the bad, the ugly and even the razzle-dazzle ones if you know what I mean - and making it his own kind of vampire that we haven't necessarily seen before. I must admit, hearing this book was to be about vampires made me really hesitant in reading this book in the first place, but I'm still thankful that I decided against it and read it instead. The book not only offered uniqueness but the plot went in a completely different direction than I was expecting, giving me even more reason to enjoy the book since predictability can sometimes be a book's downfall. So I'm glad for that part.
Now onto the issues side, I don't have many issues with the book per se - at least not regarding the storyline - but the main issue I had was with the characters than anything else presented in the book. Gene, the main character, is the human tirelessly hiding amongst the vampire population and he's trying his best to adapt to this very blood-thristy environment that has now taken over his human world. Literally. Not only does he have to hide the fact that he sweats, grows facial hair and is simply not as fast as the others are . . . but the list is endless and for Gene everything about his humanity is dangerous no matter where he goes. While Gene was an intriguing character but I couldn't really believe in him lasting as long as he did in this world of Fukuda's and I was surprised the vampires hadn't discovered his secret sooner to be honest with you. Don't get me wrong here, Gene was a pretty smart guy and knew how to undermine his superiors . . . but I don't know . . . I just couldn't believe in it and if I don't believe in something . . . especially in the main character . . . I often find it hard to connect with them and everything else in the book.
On a side note another character I had trouble connecting with was a girl named Ashley June, a former classmate of Gene's and someone Gene has forever had a 'crush' on. Now I didn't mind Gene and his macho exterior, but Ashley June really got on my nerves. There are many shades to Ashley's character and you do end up growing fond of her at certain times as you learn about her backstory and all that, but as a love interest for Gene - if that's what you would call it - I just couldn't see the connection between them let alone feel one coming up on the horizon. So apart from the lack of connection with the two main characters . . . this book and the story presented was still very appealing to me but if a sequel is coming, I hope for more depth in these characters of Fukuda's and some tugging feelings to make me feel more for these characters so fingers crossed for that!
Overall, despite the flaws I found in the characters, my favourite part of the book would have to be its ending alone since Andrew Fukuda wrote a shocking cliffhanger which I'm sure means this is yet another part of a book series and I'm excited to see how things plan out. THE HUNT offers a great amount of mystery, adventure and lot's of I-didn't-see-this-coming sort of moments, so if you love something going beyond those lines with an interesting twist to vampires . . . then this young adult book is definitely something worth picking up!