Click here to read reviewer Rashmi Srinivas' take on The Hunt.
Author Allison Brennan has written a fast-paced novel that will have readers sitting on the edge of their seats. The Hunt offers thrills as well as a little romance on the side. Twelve years ago, Miranda Moore escaped certain death at the hands of a serial killer. Her best friend, Sharon, was not so lucky, gunned down as the girls fled for their lives. Miranda more than proved herself as courageous at the time, leading the investigators, including FBI agent Quincy Peterson, to the cabin where she and Sharon had been held captive and tortured for several days before the killer set them free so he could go on the hunt.
Now the head of the local search and rescue division, Miranda and other local authorities are on the trail of her captor once again. Nicknamed the Butcher, he has proven himself a cold and ruthless killer, torturing, raping and hunting his victims before he murders them. Miranda is the only one who ever got away. Sheriff Nick Thomas calls in the FBI, requesting the help of old friend Quincy Peterson when a young woman is found dead in the forest.
Miranda, Nick and Quinn share a past not so easily put behind them. Miranda has mixed feelings about seeing her old lover, Quinn, again. It was because of him that she failed in her attempt to join the FBI nearly a decade before. Quinn never stopped loving Miranda. And then there is Nick, who once wanted nothing more than to capture Mirandaís heart. Despite the tangle of feelings between them, they must set their personal feelings aside when another woman turns up missing.
It has been over twelve years, seven known victims and at least nine young women gone missing in the Bozeman area of Montana. With the media and politicians breathing down their necks, the pressure to catch the Butcher intensifies. They decide to track the killer by going back into the past, searching for a pattern and hoping the possible suspects from the first murder, that of Penny Thompson, reveal something that had not been uncovered all those years before.
Miranda has built her life around staying in control, proving that sheís a survivor and not a victim. The ghosts of the past haunt her no less, especially with the discovery of the Butcherís latest victim. Allison Brennan has created a character who is not only a strong, intelligent and independent lead character, but also one with a vulnerability that cannot help but to touch the readerís heart. The two men in her life, Nick and Quinn, love Miranda and want to protect her, but neither wants to hold her back.
Although the identity of the Butcher remains a mystery for most of the novel, he makes several appearances throughout, allowing the reader into his thoughts and past. His own childhood was one full of abuse and pain that turned into hate and anger, surfacing in the violence he wreaks on his victims.
Just as the title indicates, The Hunt describes the final game the Butcher plays with his victims, as well as the hunt to find him by Miranda and the authorities. Itís a race against time,one of life and death for all those involved. Allison Brennan has crafted an entertaining and gripping novel, tempered with a touch of romance that will have readers racing to the end to see who comes out on top.