by Tess Grant
Genre: YA Paranormal
Release Date: January 17th 2017
Books We Love Ltd.
Summary from Goodreads:
Kitty Irish has heard all the rumors swirling around Daniel Phinney. Most of them involve a gun, a flask, and a temper. One chance encounter with the WWII veteran over a grisly find in the woods pulls the cover off the dark secrets of their small town, and Kitty is drawn into an unlikely partnership.
Armed with an antique rifle and a handful of homemade silver bullets, the two form an efficient team. Unfortunately, their game is werewolf hunting, and disaster is only a bite away.
SASCHA DARLINGTON’S REVIEW
Remember the days when vampires and werewolves used to be scary? You know, before they became Alexander Skarsgård and Joe Manganiello and synonymous with sex? I am so happy to find novels that actually revisit those scary days. Hunter’s Moon is one such novel that’s popped up on my radar, thankfully!
First let me admit that I spent an overly long portion of the novel cringing with regard to Maddie, the family’s old golden retriever who the mother, Annie, has decided should now spend the night’s in the equivalent of a shed. This coincided with Kitty’s recognition that bad things are lurking in the woods. I almost stopped reading just because of my refusal lately to read any book in which the dog dies. However (you knew that was coming…didn’t you?), I continued reading and I’m glad I did.
In Hunter’s Moon, Tess Grant has written an old fashioned scary horror combination young adult novel. This is the story of an apprentice learning from the experienced hunter with Kitty slowly moving from disbelief to respect for the WWII vet, Phinney. This is a novel with lots of depth and themes from judging people by their looks to how people cope when their loved one’s off to war and they are left behind.
The novel was well paced and tautly written so the reader felt Kitty’s tension and sense of foreboding. Also, the characters were well-written with depth and lots of thought given to motivation and behavior.
If you’re like me and a fan of the old-fashioned scary monsters, here’s one for you.
4 butterflies and a ladybug out of 5 butterflies
About the Author
After nearly ten years as a forensic anthropologist, Tess Grant semi-retired to a farmette in the backwoods of Michigan. She lives at the edge of the Manistee National Forest with her husband, children, and a number of strange critters, none of whom are werewolves.
The tang of old pennies hung in the air. Kitty was smart enough to know she hadn’t stumbled on some stash of long-buried loot. No self-respecting pirate would be caught dead in the middle of the Michigan woods.
That coppery smell was blood.
Maddie had the scent too. The golden retriever pressed forward, nose scuffling through the mulch. Her fluffy tail hung inactive. A wiggly rear end might divert too much energy from her nose.
Somewhere high above, a cloud ghosted over the sun, and the forest light grew dark green and cool. Kitty moved forward slowly. It would be just perfect to step into the middle of something completely nasty. Her shoes still looked mostly decent after a winter indoors. A big smear of muck across the toes would really round out her look.
Maddie suddenly growled, stopping dead. One paw hung suspended in the air and her body tensed.
“Maddie? What’s the problem?”
The retriever lowered her head to the ground, slowly pacing a circle. Kitty leaned over the spot that had thrown the dog off. Maybe it was a coyote. Maddie hated them.
A paw had indented the soft ground right where the aging dog had spooked. Kitty nodded—positive it was a coyote—and crouched down next to it to get a better look. Maddie circled around her, chest rumbling. Kitty knew a little about prints. Her dad had been pointing them out to her since she could walk. Deer and rabbit marks were everywhere, but this didn’t belong to one of the gentle guys. It had the four toes and pads of a predator, and it was big. Laying her hand over top of it, she could spread her fingers and barely cover it. Deep claw marks dug into the leaf mold ahead of the pads. Cats sheathed their claws when they walked; this was some sort of huge canine.
If this was a coyote, it was mutant. What sort of a thing made a print like that?
Kitty moved forward into the deep shadows under the trees. Something dead was in there. Flies buzzed and whirled under the trees. Maddie stayed where she was, guarding the print.
The carcass lay half-hidden under some ferns at the base of a broad oak. It was a deer, or what was left of one anyway. Its soft tan hide lay torn; its white stomach stained brown with dried blood. Great gashes ran the length of it, shoulder to haunches. Kitty’s stomach churned. This was about killing to kill; not one bite was missing. Sickened, she turned to leave, halting at the sight of the head. She had assumed it was at the end of the neck tucked away unseen under the bracken. She was wrong.
Completely detached, it lay under the next tree.
Whatever had done this was no dog.