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I Belong

Review: Hunter by Mercedes Lackey

HunterTitle: Hunter

Author: Mercedes Lackey

Genre: YA Dystopian/Paranormal/Fantasy

Series: Hunter (Book #1)

Publication Date: September 1, 2015

Format: Hardcover, 384 Pages

ISBN-10: 1484707842 (Disney-Hyperion)

ISBN-13: 978-1484707845 (Disney-Hyperion)

Reviewed by: Bridget


Centuries ago, the barriers between our world and the Otherworld were slashed open allowing hideous fantastical monsters to wreak havoc; destroying entire cities in their wake. Now, people must live in enclosed communities, behind walls that keep them safe from the evil creatures constantly trying to break in. Only the corps of teen Hunters with lightning reflexes and magical abilities can protect the populace from the daily attacks.

Joyeaux Charmand is a mountain girl from a close knit village who comes to the big city to join the Hunters. Joy thinks she is only there to perform her civic duty and protect the capitol Cits, or civilians, but as cameras follow her every move, she soon learns that the more successful she is in her hunts, the more famous she becomes.

With millions of fans watching her on reality TV, Joy begins to realize that Apex is not all it seems. She is forced to question everything she grew up believing about the legendary Hunters and the very world she lives in. Soon she finds that her fame may be part of a deep conspiracy that threatens to upend the protective structure built to keep dark magic out. The monsters are getting in and it is up to Joy to find out why.

Quick & Dirty: Very intriguing story that was slower paced, but still kept my interest. It has a dystopian setting, but it has fantasy and paranormal aspects as well, so I think fans of all these genres would enjoy it!

Opening Sentence: You couldn’t see outside the train windows at night; the conductor had opaque them.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Hundreds of years ago there was an event known as the Diseray. It changed the world we know today into a world full of monstrous creatures. It started an epic war between the humans and monsters that still rages on. Whole cities were destroyed and the only reason the human race survived is because the hunters were born. Hunters are mostly teenagers that have special magical abilities that allow them to fight the monsters that now freely roams the world. Most humans have evacuated to large cities that are guarded by a wall that is supposed to keep the monsters out, but it seems like the wall may not be working as well as it once did.

Joyeaux Charmand grew up in a small village located in what use to be the western United States. She became an orphan at a very young age and was raised in a Monastery. It is the law that all children who shows signs of becoming a hunter report to Capitol, but in Joy’s small community they have kept their hunters secret because they need protection from the monsters just as much as the city does. Joy has been hunting for years now, but she just recently was requested to come to city by her only living relative. They know she is a hunter and she gladly leaves home to fulfill her civic duty and to protect her tiny village from any unwanted visitors from the Capitol.

Upon arriving in the big city Joy realizes that being a hunter is way different then it was back home. Hunters are a type of celebrity in the city and their every action is filmed on camera. Fighting monsters isn’t less dangerous, but now she has millions of people watching her fight. Everyone thinks that they are safe in the city, but Joy soon realizes that monsters are getting through the wall and no one is as safe as they think. It is up to Joy and the other hunters to figure out what is going on before the wall is completely destroyed and the monsters kill everyone in the Capitol.

Joy is a great heroine. I loved her sense of loyalty and just how sensible she is. She never went without while growing up, but there also wasn’t an abundance of extra stuff. She learned to appreciate all the little things in her life, and I really liked that. When she gets to the city she has lots of money and fame thrown at her, but she doesn’t let any of that affect her. Sure it’s nice to have some of the comforts that come with living in the city, but at heart Joy is a small town girl with small town needs. She is also very respectful to others and she truly cares about protecting everyone from the monsters. She takes her job very seriously and that is one of the reasons she is so good at it. I found her easy to connect with and overall, I really loved her character.

Hunter is an action packed story that I really enjoyed. I think there are definitely going to be people that don’t like this book, but personally, I thought it was a great read. It is slower paced and not really a quick read. It has a fairly complicated world and it’s a lot to take in at first, but I thought the setting fascinating. I found that when I wasn’t reading it I was thinking about it and wanting to read it, which to me that is a huge plus. I loved that it covered so many different genres, it made it a much more diverse book and I feel that it will appeal to people that enjoy paranormal, dystopian, or fantasy stories. I really enjoyed getting to know the entire cast of characters and I can’t wait to get to know even more about them in the next book. The romance in the story is pretty subtle, but written really well. I totally swoon over the love interest and I am excited to see how the relationship develops in the next book. The ending was satisfying, but there are still so many unanswered questions. Luckily, this is a series and I can’t wait to get my hands on the next book! Like I said before, this book won’t be for everyone, but I personally would recommend it!

Notable Scene:

In an instant, they world to face us and showed their true nature.

They were still wind, but have the wings of bats, wasps, and flies. Their lips stretched and thin, they lost all but a few tattered rags of clothing, their skin dark until leather, their hair to a few patches on their skulls. Their faces stretched and developed muzzles, with yellow eyes and huge mouth full of rows and rows of needle teeth. They open their mouth to hiss or snarl at us, and as the child screamed and ran off in terror, I pulled back my arm and through with both natural and magic strength, and the net expanded as it flew through the air. As soon as it was in place, I dropped the net of magic over them. Then I pulled all the edges in tight and held on for dear life.

The Hunter Series:

1. Hunter


FTC Advisory:  Disney-Hyperion provided me with a copy of Hunter.  No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.


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