Friday, February 3, 2012

I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga

What if the world's worst serial killer...was your dad?

That's the teaser on the back of this book. Of course it had me hooked!

Jazz is no ordinary teen, although he knows how to act like one. But when you have been raised by the world's most horrific serial killer it is hard to be "normal". Especially when your dad has taught you everything he knows in order to groom you as his successor. 

"Dear Old Dad" is now behind bars. Jazz really is trying to lead a normal life now. He has a girlfriend, he's in the school play. But Jazz' life is anything but normal. He lives with his crazy gramma, trying to keep the child welfare people from sending him to a foster home, his best friend Howie is a hemophiliac, and he lives in fear of becoming just like his father.

When a woman is found dead in a field with 3 fingers missing Jazz knows right away that another serial killer is on the loose. Unfortunately he can't get the law enforcement to agree with him before another murder is committed. Jazz joins forces with the police to catch the murderer. Jazz knows how a serial killer thinks and he wants to prove to himself that he is not like "Dear Old Dad". But it's a fine line he is walking because he understands the cravings to see a person's last breath seep out of them.

This is one of those books where I wish I had half hearts to give out. I would have given this a three and a half rating. I vacillated between really liking it and "it was just okay". I really liked the suspense of the story and the not knowing who the killer was until almost the very end. I disliked that this is a YA book. The theme was pretty horrific and sometimes goes into some gory details about what the killer did to his victims. Surprisingly the author kept the language fairly tame. I was offended by his use of Jesus, and g** d*** but other than that there really wasn't a lot of language, maybe because the theme was harsh enough? 

I Hunt Killers is published by Little Brown and will be out for sale in April 2012- I received my ARC copy at ALA in January.

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