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The Hunt (Atlanta Burns) Paperback – February 9, 2016
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About the Author
Chuck Wendig is the author of The Heartland Trilogy and the Atlanta Burns series for young adults, as well as numerous novels for adults, including Star Wars: Aftermath and the popular Miriam Black series. He is also a game designer and screenwriter. He cowrote the short film Pandemic, the feature film HiM, and the Emmy-nominated digital narrative Collapsus. Chuck lives in “Pennsyltucky” with his family. He blogs at www.terribleminds.com.
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Top customer reviews
The first Atlanta Burns book was my introduction to Wendig's prose, after being a fan of his blog for some time. This series is not just a great mystery or great YA (both genres I have a hard time finding good examples of), it's just a good read. It deals with heavy themes of sexual assault, crime, underdogs struggling against people in power. It sends strong messages: You matter. It's not your fault. You don't owe your identity to anyone but yourself. It's not the most glamorous of settings in backwoods Pennsylvania, where fracking ruins the water and rich white jerks hold sway. Where you can't trust the adults who prey on the weak, and can't depend on their victims to be strong enough to defend themselves.
Enter Atlanta Burns, with the great name and the squirrel gun. She mouths off, the does wonderfully unwise things, she propels the plot forward. She's the highschooler doing what wish you'd have done to get back at bullies. She's surrounded by great friends and complicated, realistic adults both good and bad. There are some saintly people, some truly nasty people, and a lot of refreshingly layered minor characters. It's also good to see some of the genre staples subverted, at times. Why doesn't the plucky heroine call the police or ask the adults for help or do the sensible thing? Well, she does, and if not, there's something of a reason for it.
My complaints about THE HUNT are few. The book follows a similar structure as the first novel in terms of plot setup and conclusion. I also would have liked it to hammer home the aforementioned themes a little harder, but that's a personal call. And I would have liked to see more of those minor characters, since Atlanta just devours every scene she's in. The climax and ending of this one felt a bit abrupt, and I wanted that narrative camera to linger a little longer.
Even so, I like the series a lot, and if you're an aspiring writer who follows Wendig's blog, it's always great to see his advice put to form.
The Hunt is the 2nd book in the Atlanta Burns series and it's just as fantastic as the first one. In this one, Atlanta is at her butt kicking best. Yet again, she faces down some of the darkest of humanity and does it with attitude.
In The Hunt, Wendig tugs our heartstrings, letting us hope that things are going to work out and it will be sunshine and roses. But even as we read, we know that Atlanta's world just doesn't work that way. When righteous retribution is in order, Atlanta is our girl.
The characters are multi-faceted and even a particular villain gets infinitely more interesting. I'm hoping this one shows up in a future book!
This is a fast, violent, and satisfying read. I want more!
The Hunt started out slowly for me, and at times I was concerned that it would digress into a pulpit for shouting social reform, instead of a telling more of Atlanta's journey. Although there was a fair bit of activism, the 2nd quarter or so picked up pace and kept me hooked through the end.
I thought that Mr. Wendig's portrayal of Atlanta's PTSD issues was well done. I appreciated seeing that part of her displayed openly and sympathetically. She didn't always deal well with her issues, but she dealt with them honestly and to the best of her ability. And though she had some dark moments, she moved forward in spite of them. For me, the message was that hope doesn't always mean happiness, but it does mean that you keep believing in happy days even through the dark ones.
Atlanta's adventures are quite a bit larger than life, so you'll have to suspend belief a bit. There's no way a teenage girl could get herself into some of the predicaments that Mr. Wendig devises for her, but that added to the thrill of the story. She's something of a Marvel character to me -- the girl with the subtle superpowers that's she's not really sure she wants.
I'd love to hear more from Atlanta Burns.
I like that she's a bit of a protector of the misfits, and that her friends are such an interesting and diverse cast of characters. But it's also in the friends that I have a problem with this book. They're sort of there, but I'd like for them to take on a more active role. Of course, the character's a bit of a lone wolf, just starting to even HAVE friends, so I get that it could take until book three. Still, some of the dialogue gets a little preachy, such as where Atlanta is asking stuff about (for example) how to refer to a trans character and gets a lecture. I think the intention was good but the execution was a little heavy handed - it felt like she was asking questions just to give the other character an opportunity to preach, it wasn't very organic. Otherwise, I really did love the character and the plot, and I will totally look for Atlanta again.
Chuck Wendig is a FABULOUS storyteller. If you like this, try the Mockingbird series next.
Most recent customer reviews
This author knows how to look at desperation at its meanest level and craft a song of hope.Read more