I adored Sam Hawksmoor’s debut, The Repossession so when I was offered the chance to review The Hunting, the sequel, I couldn’t say no. I needed to know what happened to the characters after the cliffhanger ending of the Hunting and I was really intrigued to see where Hawksmoor would take his characters from that point.
Immediately The Hunting takes us straight back into the world of The Repossession with Genie, Renee and Rian floating down a river and trying to escape the Fortress who may own Genie and Renee’s bodies, as they were at the end of the first book. Hawksmoor raises really interesting questions about what makes us human and developments in science, while telling a thrilling tale of adventure. I loved seeing how the three teenagers tried to survive and thwart those after them. I don’t want to go too into the plot to spoil it for readers, however they are twists aplenty and some ingenious moments with the trio evading capture, like making money in a festival selling cushions and how Genie had to disguise herself.More than in the first book, the gang are reliant on themselves rather than adults and I think this was very well handled as, for the sci-fiesque influenced plot, the characters acted like teenagers but at the same time developed in strong, brave characters each with their own skills and flaws.
I have to admit that at times during the points where Genie zoned out to see the other kids from the Fortress in a dream-like setting, I wasn’t sure if my interest was fully sustained. I haven’t read a lot of sci-fi though, so it could be more to do with that, and I did honestly like how every detail, even in these scenes, became important by the end.
The ending for me was perfect and I’m so glad Hawksmoor had the courage to take the characters where he did and make the reader question whether the right thing had been done, particularly seeing the effect on one couple! It leaves space open for a third book well, if there will be one, but overall the ending served as a brutal reminder that sometimes it isn’t as easy as saying they all lived happily ever after and I commend Hawksmoor for this. While I am sure some readers will be unhappy with the ending, I think it was the most honest and realistic avenue for the characters to take and this made it very different from the standard YA endings I have read in books of this type. That said, it may be difficult for fans of one particular coupling in the series to read!
Highly readable and equally full of adventure and character development, I think the Hunting was a fitting sequel to The Repossession and happily recommend it. I received a free review copy from Hodder Children’s Books/Hachette Children’s Books in exchange for my honest review. The Repossession is available to buy now!