Review: ALIEN HUNTER is a Wild Ride

Alien Hunter
Written by Whitley Strieber
Published by Tor
August 2013
Hardback, 316 pages

Aliens. Hunters. A good combination for reading before bed, right? Nothing to see here folks, keep reading on…..

Flynn Carroll is your average, small to medium sized Texas town cop with a disturbingly sad story that jumps you right into action. From the beginning of the first chapter, the reader is thrown right into a situation that ends up driving this young man’s path in life, leading him into the most bizarre situation he could ever dream of. He is recruited by the government (maybe, we know how transparent this can be) for a special ops team (of some sort for someone) and, well … aliens. Teaming with others who’ve had the same life disturbing incidents, they go on a wild chase across the US to catch those who’ve turned their lives upside down. Are they successful? I’ll let you find that out for yourself because I think it’s worth the chase.

Whitley Strieber uses the first chapter to set up the book and how Flynn’s mind as a cop and as a human in the worst thinkable situation works. It’s been years since I’ve read a procedural book, planning, plotting, and trying to out maneuver the bad guy while fighting for your life with no supernatural elements involved. But this reminded me of why I loved John Grisham books when I was younger. Plus, now aliens are mixed in. Flynn’s messed up mind (not a dirty cop, just a person who is in pain) is fascinating. Watching the wheels turn as he tries to out think his enemy keeps you on your toes trying to understand where he’s going. And he toes the line as closely as he can without compromising his integrity as a cop; and this line gets very blurry. For him, it doesn’t matter who he is fighting, he keeps his humanity in check even when it’s not easy.

So Strieber is taking a Grisham-like story and adding the supernatural to it. It works. There’s special or modified equipment that seems legit, nothing too outlandish. Oh, and did I mention aliens? OK, so maybe that’s a little harder to grasp but also think of it like Men in Black: they could be out there and we just don’t know it. That’s believable.

Throwing this all together in the carefully crafted way that Strieber has makes this a great read. Fast paced and something that could happen in real life….with aliens. I did read up a tiny bit on Strieber and I see how his own life experiences have influenced the book. I won’t say much on this. But I was completely drawn in and went through the book in no time. On the off days, my mind was reeling over whatever had happened and what was going to happen next.

I’m happy to say I do have a copy of the next book in the Alien Hunter series, Alien Hunter: Underground and I’m very excited to see where that story will take Flynn Carroll next. If it’s as good as Alien Hunter then I know I’m in for a wild ride.

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