Your Memberships & Subscriptions
RAZORBACKS Kindle Edition
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
- File Size : 432 KB
- Publication Date : May 4, 2014
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print Length : 108 pages
- Language: : English
- ASIN : B00K4N02G0
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,071,215 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The main characters of "Razorbacks" are Avery and Peter, a father and 13-year-old son on the run from the law and a rather sticky domestic situation involving Peter's mother, a crackhead meth dealer. It would seem that leaving the mother's meth lab and sleazy boyfriend behind would have to be an improvement for Peter, but, instead, things get worse quickly. Avery and Peter are caught in a major sandstorm on a West Texas freeway and become part of a massive multi-car pileup that results from the diminished visibility. They and the handful of fellow survivors they encounter in and amongst the wreckage think that all they need to do is sit tight and ride out the storm. Instead, they soon find that there are a number of extremely large, extremely hungry hogs in the vicinity.
“Razorbacks” is a 100-page novella (that could easily have been made into a creenplay), so there’s not a lot of room for character development here. Most of the characters, other than Avery and Peter, are merely sketched in with a single dimension, and the only time the author gets into their thought processes is usually immediately before their rather gruesome demise. For this book, however, that’s not all that much of a drawback, since the emphasis is on the action and shock. To set the stage for the final confrontation between man and beast, author Mahaffey creates a good, albeit somewhat far fetched playing field. The substantial number of wrecked vehicles affords people plenty of places to hide in, under, or on top of while the pigs try to get to them. In addition, being Texas, there are a few firearms on hand, as well as some implements in some of the vehicles that the survivors transform into makeshift weapons of various sorts.
Although “Razorbacks” has plenty of action, the book is at its best in the early stages, before the people become aware of just what’s out there, instead glimpsing things in the wind and sand. There’s a great scene in which one character allows a pet Chihuahua on a leash to go for a walk into the storm, and the predictable result still manages to be shocking. But once the battle begins in earnest, Mahaffey increasingly foregoes suspense in favor of rather graphic descriptions of gore. Apparently, these hogs have a craving for fingers, since several characters wind up getting fingers bitten off. Similar anatomical details are also described in gruesome depth.
I’m no prude, and I’m not opposed to graphic content in a book, but the effect of this sort of description in “Razorbacks” is numbing rather than shocking. After a while, the pattern of attacks, attempts at defense, and dismemberments becomes monotonous. It doesn’t help matters that there seem to be a nearly endless number of attacking hogs, even though the beleaguered people manage to dispatch several of them. This repetitive action and increasing casualty list goes on far too long, so that, by the time Mahaffey gets to the final showdown, I had nearly lost interest.
“Razorbacks” is a book that would have worked better at 50 pages or 250 pages rather than 100. At novel length, Mahaffey could have developed more characters. Alternatively, at a shorter novelette length, he could have oridyced a really taut thriller. Instead, he’s in the middle, with an interesting premise, a likable youthful protagonist in Peter, and action and suspense that go downhill fast after a solid start. When Mahaffey is on, as in the first few chapters of “Razorbacks,” the story is genuinely suspenseful. For that reason, I do recommend “Razorbacks” as an escapist horror adventure. But be aware, that, like many a prize hog, the book has a good bit of fat that could have been trimmed away.
A man and his son risk driving through a dust storm and wind up in the middle of a huge pileup. Dead and injured people are strewn around and blood is all over the place. As the storm worsens, it brings something with it. A pack of wild boars, with an uncommonly large leader. They smell the blood and close in for the easy pickings. There’s no place to hide, so the survivors must get creative. As if they really stand a chance against these killing machines.
The author wastes no time, putting you right in the middle of a bloody hunt. From there you go on to meet a father and his son. They have quite a twisted story of their own. Once things got bad, the boy really stepped up but I had doubts about the father. Soon it doesn’t matter, as they can’t find these things off by themselves.
One plan after another goes wrong. It gets pretty gory, I’m telling you. Sad that some characters I thought a lot of were killed off quickly. Others took a while to meet their bloody ends.
And the wild boar. Whoa…were they something else. Ever seen the movie Hannibal? That scene with the man eating pigs gives you a good picture of what they can do. No cute little piggies in these pages.
Great start, genuine characters, and some mean ass animals. It’s all good. And I liked the ending. Kind of a nod to into the sunset.
Not only is the hero and an unusual character, but the villain is as well, a Hogzilla called Brown Muzzle. The monster feral hog leads a pack of other wild pigs that hunt down humans trapped by traffic pile-up on a West Texas highway in a sand storm.
Mahaffey also does a great job with the setting. He makes the sand storm another sinister character that helps and hinders humans and wild pigs alike. His descriptions are so well done that the reader can almost taste the dust.
At under a 100 pages RAZORBACKS is a novella, which I think is the right format for the story. It is short enough to be read in one sitting and believe me, you will want to read it in one sitting. Stretching it into a longer work would have smoothed out the twists and turns of the rollercoaster ride that it is and taken away from enjoyment of the story. And at a penny a page, RAZORBACKS is affordable entertainment and well worth its price.
I highly recommend RAZORBACKS by George S. Mahaffey.
If you like the whole feral pig attacking humans thing, you should also check out the classic 1984 Australian film Razorback .
Top reviews from other countries
This was one of those books that had a great original story, but unfortunately didn't quite fulfil it's promise. Think my main issue was that the razorbacks were just not scary enough, nor was enough tension created in the storyline.
3 star read