This has to be the best vampire book ever. No undead boyfriends, or bloody cross-species relationships, just pure survival and terror.
Why I Loved This Book So Much: The Hunt is a brilliant book because the vampires act like real vampires would act, like real monsters. The way the vampires acted when they encountered humans (or hepers), was monstrous and violent, and depicts a horrible creature perfectly, even though they are human in appearance. I was so glad when Gene didn't fall in love with a vampire, probably because it would of been impossible for him, he would of been brutally killed and eaten. I also loved this book was that it teaches us an important lesson under the blood and gore, remember who you truly are. Even though it is just fiction, The Hunt feels like a true survival story where the main character defies all odds and survives. I loved this book!!
What I didn't realise throughout the entire book was that the characters didn't have names. I partly didn't notice because it said Gene's name on the blurb, and just registered it as that. But throughout the entire book until right at the end, his name is never mentioned. I think that it would be so much harder trying to be human if you didn't know your real name, as well as how humans really act.
What is also amazing about this book is the writing style. On the outside, Gene is like any other, a emotionless monster who scratches his wrist when somethings funny, drools at the mention of a human, and tears through blood and flesh. But on the inside he is a human. He refers to himself as a vampire on the outside, as to blend in with everyone, but thinks himself a human. This writing style is done so perfectly, that I began to appreciate how tough Gene must be to survive, and not just end it all.
This book is truly a work of art, and is nothing like you'd expect. Even if it sounds like The Hunger Games, or seems to be a Twilight rip-off, it is not. It is a completely different, and is truly one of a kind. Important things are taught in this book, but not at all cheesy, and there is one key factor throughout this book, humanity.
Four words. Best. Vampire. Book. Ever. Enough said. But since I want others to read it, I'll keep going. There is no vampire love, no mistake at all that the vampires are anything other than horrible, human-eating monsters.
In this world, humans (or hepers) are basically extinct. The world is full of vampires. And no, Twilight Fans, they are not romantic (yay!). Gene is a human. So, in order to survive in a world of vampires who turn into monsters at the sight of humans, he has to blend in. That means, shaving his legs, wearing fake fangs, never showing emotion, never getting sweaty. The list goes on. In this world, the ruler has decided that it's about time for a good heper hunt. So they have a lottery for five lucky contestants who will go and kill some hepers. The person who kills the most hepers wins. And guess what? Gene is chosen, along with the gorgeous girl from his school, who he designates "Ashley June". Can Gene survive amongst these bloodthirsty vamps? Can he hide his identity?
At first, I thought this book was going to turn out to be some sort of Hunger Games knock-off. I mean, throw seven "lucky" lottery winners into an arena to fight off as many as you can and be the winner. But this is DEFINITELY no Hunger Games knockoff. As soon as I began the book, I lost all suspicion about any copy.
Finally, a book where the vampires are not civilised people capable of love or standing in the sun or sleeping normally. No. These vamps are bloodthirsty monsters, who melt in the sun, sleep hanging off the roof, have completely emotionless faces, and scratch their wrists when they find something funny (strange, I know, but don't forget, these are not human).
The Hunt does feature a little bit of romance. Although this part of the book was very predictable, I still enjoyed it a lot.
Something I didn't realise throughout the entire book: the characters don't have any names. I don't know why, but that just slipped my mind until it was actually said.
The characters are amazing and completely not two-dimensional. They all have a backstory, something that a lot of YA novels conveniently forget. And then it turns out something like this: "How did we meet and why do we love each other (insert name here)?" "Oh, you know, just 'cause." "Okay then".
I loved the writing style. The way Gene was talking, it was like we were the vampires, explaining simple stuff we don't even think about (e.g. smiling, goosebumps, etc.). And you could see how much Gene was struggling to survive, even just in the every day world.
This book is completely amazing. Even though it may sound like a Hunger Games ripoff, trust me, it's not. So if you're looking for an action-packed, kick-ass and addictive novel, look no further. This book is not to be missed.
Background: Humans no longer exist, they have been hunted out of existence, or so most think. Gene is unlike all of his classmates, and even the world, he is a human, faking his existence as a vampire to fit in. That is, until the Heper Hunt, where the government announces that they have kept some Hepers (humans) in their facilities preparing them for the madness to come. Gene has been living a fake life where humans are considered a delicacy and hunted for their blood, now he has been chosen as one of the few to participate in the Hunt, and his life as he knows it begins to breakaway beneath him.
Review: You can feel the suspense from the very beginning of this book, Gene explaining the rules and daily rituals so that he is not discovered by his school-mates or teachers. On Declaration day, the school is abuzz about the Hunt and who will be lucky enough to be chosen…sadly it is Gene, and his rules have not prepared him for this at all. I loved this read. It was action packed and my anxiety level was through the roof the whole time, never a dull moment, because Gene is always on the verge of being found out. There were great twists and while some things were predictable, they were still entertaining and action packed. The ending is a wonderful surprise.
There was only one word on my mind when I closed the back cover of The Hunt: wow!
The gobsmacking cover drew me in, and Fukuda's carefully chosen words kept me held close. Fukuda really knows how to make a book page-turning. Every word Fukuda writes is important and engrossing; not once is there an infodump, which makes for an action-packed and gripping read. I read this book in three hours bcause it was just so tense and wonderful.
The concept of The Hunt is intriguing: humans have been replaced by a new generation of creatures that crave human blood, yet are surprisingly not vampire-like, and our protagonist is a regular human. Said regular humans are called hepers. Our main character, Gene, has to monitor his every move so he doesn't end up being eaten by the Human 2.0's.
The novel also presents many themes, which include family, friendship, and staying true to yourself. Fukuda manages to include these themes without sounding preachy, and he does it well. Including these things in a novel makes it feel more realistic, and I felt like I was right there next to Gene as he was experiencing everything.
I will admit that I thought The Hunt was a Hunger Games knockoff at first. And for a few pages, it seemed like it. The concept: going into a big arena to fight off as many as you can and be the winner? Dystopian society? As soon as I made the comparison, I lost all hope for the book. Just another author capitalizing off the success of the dystopian genre. As I began the novel, though, I was captivated, and I lost all suspicions I had once had. I realized soon enough that there was one key difference from The Hunger Games: the initiation. In Hunger Games, it lasted a very meager number of pages. In The Hunt, there is a much longer period of time where the Hunters are initiated. At this point, I was able to stop worrying about its copycat nature and just enjoy it.
The Hunt also features a little bit of romance -- between Gene and a certain unnamed non-Heper girl. I won't give anything away, but one of the things Gene's dad told him before he disappeared was to never fall in love with one of the non-Hepers. Let's just kick back and wait to see how deep Gene falls into trouble...
Speaking of Gene, Fukuda characterizes very well. The backstory he provides for each of the characters makes them feel like family to the reader. It is very special. You don't see that a lot in YA; most characters are just there to follow the plot and provide entertainment in other YA. This is not the case in The Hunt. Each character is fleshed out thoroughly, emotional, non-cardboard-like in nature. I appreciate that.
If you're looking for a kick-arse, addictive and genuinely real novel, try The Hunt. Andrew Fukuda is a debut author not to be missed.
*OMG SO MUCH ACTION
The people in this book are not actually vampires, but, of all the paranormal creatures, that's the best available description. They cannot be in sunlight, they have fangs and long nails, and they do suck blood. However, these creatures also eat flesh, so they're not quite vampires. They have no hair on their bodies, except their heads, which seems odd. Another big difference is that they age.
He works really hard not to attract notice, following tons of strict rules, like shaving every single day to fit in with these weird vampire creatures that apparently run the world, or at least his part of it. Even with all of his preparation, it seems odd that no one's noticed him yet. Wouldn't they be able to smell him?
I really have to comment on the oddness of some of the rituals the people (aka vampire-like beings have). When they think something's funny, they scratch their wrists. At the prospect of drinking from a heper (human), they drool copiously. Gross! Weirder still, apparently rubbing an elbow into an armpit is equivalent to an intense makeout session. What the what?
The writing really impressed me. The story is told in first person by Gene. The narration is inconsistent, with Gene sometimes referring to himself as one of the people and sometimes identifying himself as a heper in his own thoughts. Rather than coming off as poor editing, this strengthens the tale. Gene has been living among them so long that he hardly knows what he is any more. At times, behaving like a person seems to come instinctively.
The Hunt calls to mind most strongly The Hunger Games, even thought the plot is quite different. The similarities between them are the lottery, although, here, winning the lottery is a lucky thing, and the battle to be number one. The Hunt, too, is a very fast read, full of action and excitement. I will definitely be looking forward to the next action-packed installment.
Also, I have to give Fukuda some serious props for his hilarious judgmental commentary of the romantic vampire novels. He's clearly laying into Twilight. Love it!
Hobbitsies Reviews: Not the perfect fit for me, but still very interesting
The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda is a seriously intense and mind-screwing book.
I spent a good 50 pages or so trying to decide WHAT paranormal creature I was dealing with in The Hunt. I mean, vampires – they drink blood, hang from ceilings, fear sunlight, etc. But in The Hunt, these creatures also scratched their wrists when they found something humorous and other wacky things like that and it threw me for such a loop. And hepers! Humans were called HEPERS. I just. It blew my mind.
Basically, Andrew Fukuda does an AMAZING job of world building. And story-telling. The Hunt was so intense and action-packed, and also hurrah, a male protagonist!
I really enjoyed the protagonist, Gene. In his position, I would definitely lay on the ground and say “Come and get me, vamps!” But Gene was so brave and alone and a freaking survivor. And kind of a badass.
But, other than the crazy cliff-hanger ending, there was a bit of The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda that I thought ended up being slightly predictable. Not enough to ruin the story, but it was definitely something I was aware of while reading The Hunt.
Oh, and did I mention the crazy ending? What a cliffhanger!
Guys, if you’re looking for an intense and paranormal and dystopianish book, definitely check out The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda. While The Hunt was not the perfect fit for me, Andrew Fukuda does a great job with the world-building and the storytelling.