Shelf 9 – Row 2 – Book 16
Horror! October! How convenient this is. Three weeks and we’ve had a taste of each of the three categories with no repeats! I wonder who will get the first repeat genre in the end? Man oh man, am I excited though. Not to give any less importance to the other categories, but I had really been looking forward to a horror selection. It had been years since I’ve had a good read that kept me up at night and wanting to keep the lights on! Now…on to my selection…The Hunger by Whitley Strieber.
THIS BOOK IS SO 80’S AND I LOVE IT. –Calm down Garrett-.
Upon first picking up this book, I couldn’t help but grin. The over saturated, yellow and purple cover just screamed that I would be in for something really, really interesting this time around. My silly demeanor did give way to a bit of disappoint, as I realized I probably wouldn’t be staying awake at night like I had hoped.
Apparently, they made a movie out of The Hunger after its publication. I happened upon a later release with a different cover featuring the actresses and actors. The pages of the book are the yellowest I’ve seen yet, but I guess it melds well with the purple woman on the title. Perhaps it was intentional or perhaps the book just didn’t age well. Speaking of aging..it’s time we get to…
THE RUNDOWN (WHAT I READ)
Vampires, eternal life, and lots of sex. Pretty much sums what I got out of the plot during my read. This book isn’t too long, especially compared to my last two selections. The text is moderate and the pages read very quickly. This may be from the author’s simple tone, but I’ll get to that in a bit.
The story follows a pure femme fatale woman named Miriam. She also has a sadistic and depressed companion named John. Oh, did I mention they’re also bloodthirsty, ruthless vampires? The story gets going right away with two viscous, planned, and most of all bloody murders by the vampire couple. They both casually go about their targets in a methodical way that had me curious and feeling evil to read more about the pair.
The couple drives about, with flashbacks to both of their origin stories twisted in. It’s slowly revealed that Miriam granted John supposed eternal life as she fell in love with him. Back to the present, John begins to diminish and age rapidly. He attempts to Sleep, a short but necessary nap vampires use to regain their health and stay eternal, but it fails. More backstory is given then by Miriam and it’s revealed that she constantly has changed lovers throughout her life since ancient Egypt as their bodies eventually fail and the eternal life becomes and eternal prison.
John becomes very frustrated with Miriam as she also has invited a young teenager named Alice to stay with them, who Miriam secretly plans to be her next victim when John is not longer useful. John loves Miriam like no other, and struggles to stay calm around Alice, fearing she may eventually replace him.
The book also focuses on a nurse named Sarah who is working on solving eternal life for humanity. Miriam plans to use her studies to keep the curse off of her future toys and prevent them from suffering and failing.
My read ended with some tension between John and Alice, his jealousy and frustration towards her looking to lead towards murder…
THE THREE HOUR READ
While I never felt like anything might be hiding in my closet, behind my shoulder, or even haunting my dreams later, I have to admit I had a bit of fun reading this story. The action and tense relationships the book throws at you immediately caught me off guard. The book did have its grotesque moments, but other than that I never felt too horrified. It felt more like reading a more mature and developed version of Twilight.
Finishing my marathon of The Hunger, I do have to admit I was pretty disappointed. It did a good job of keeping my attention, and I’m not surprised it was made into a movie. I also wasn’t surprised to learn that the movie didn’t do to well. To often it kept my attention for all the WRONG reasons. Some of the dramatic scenes were laughable, the constant sex felt uncomfortable and forced, and the ludicrous nature of the plot had me in disbelief.
I know what you’re thinking. Yes, it is a horror story with vampires and I should set ludicrous feelings aside. However, the book rushes into things so much the characters had no development; and it felt like they were just cold and grotesque because vampires are SO COOL and readers would love it. Maybe I’m too picky about what I like in my characters, but all of the ones in the book felt generic and it made it difficult for me to appreciate things.
Streiber’s tone was direct and the plot extremely easy to follow. He avoided being too descriptive as a narrator and let most of the characters tell the story. But, like I said, this would be the book’s downfall. Because I never cared about the characters, the scenery and feel of the book all fell apart.
THE FINAL STATS
Progress made: 40% (122 pages out of 305)
Cost – $1.72
Books initial condition upon purchase – Yellow pages, perfect otherwise.
Any breaks during the 3-hour session? – No, but the session was cut about 30 minutes short on count of me falling asleep.
The Hunger failed to scare me, failed to make me love it, but I have to say it was a fun read. I’ll forget this book soon though – it didn’t have much going for it in the way of inspiring quotes or beautiful imagery. It felt kind of like an intense roller coaster that you’ll never want to ride on again because your stomach hurts.
Likelihood to continue on: 4/10
Interested in the book yourself, or hungry for more opinions? Check out on Amazon The Hunger