Image: Simon & Schuster
When I picked up Ezekiel Boone’s The Hatching, I was feeling burnt out from one too many depressing tales about the end of humankind, but I was so intrigued by the book’s monster movie premise that I decided to check it out anyway.
I’m a sucker for a good creature feature — The Mist is without a doubt one of my favourite things Stephen King has ever written, helped along by Frank Darabont’s chilling film adaptation — and The Hatching doesn’t disappoint in this regard. From its global scope, to its stomach-churning visuals, and smattering of romance, it’s no surprise that the film and television rights have already been optioned.
One of King’s greatest talents as a writer is his ability to ground his horror in genuine human emotion, and that’s something Boone manages to achieve here, thanks to a diverse cast of viewpoint characters strong enough to carry the weight of the narrative on their own. From the difficulties of balancing work and family, to the pain of thwarted hopes and dreams, as the chapters progressed, I became so engrossed in the every day struggles of these peoples’ lives that I almost forgot about the danger looming on the horizon.
The current trend in apocalyptic entertainment is to focus on whether or not humanity is capable of overcoming its darker impulses, which while providing a basis for some interesting social commentary, can make for grim holiday reading. I would highly recommend The Hatching to anyone who’s forgotten how much fun the end of the world can be — although you might want to wait until you disembark from your flight before you delve into it.
With a final twist worthy of its B-movie heritage, I can’t wait to see what new horrors Boone conjures up for the second instalment.
The Hatching by Ezekiel Boone is now available for pre-order and will be published on July 05, 2016.
Disclaimer: I received an Advanced Reading Copy from NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.