Written by: Kate Genet
I feel like I’m just throwing five star reviews around lately, but I’m actually decidedly hard to please when it comes to books. It’s been wonderful to read some good stuff the last couple of weeks, and Correia’s Monster Hunter International is no exception.
This book is a hell of a lot of fun. I’ve read a fair few novels that attempt a sort of wry, smart humor in their narration, and believe me, it’s a lot harder to get right than you’d think. This one gets it right. The story is told in the voice of the main character, as he is first confronted with the horror of his slovenly boss transformed into a very angry werewolf, and then on to the discovery that not only do werewolves exist, but so to do a large number of other monsters. And where monsters exist, so too do the organizations to battle them.
Like I said, it’s a great adventure. I suppose the story could have been written all dark and brooding, but it works wonderfully done in a more humorous vein. Not that there aren’t plenty of heart-pounding action scenes to keep you on the edge of your seat.
The characters are fabulous. We get to know them better and better as the story develops, just as you would get to know a real person a little at a time, and this gradual unveiling works – not only do we the reader get to know the characters, but they are busy discovering themselves at the same time – the newbie monster hunters are learning fast just what they’re capable of, and what is important to them.
Monster Hunter International is one of those books that makes you want to jump into the world and be part of it. I’m completely sure I’d be super useless with a sword, or any sharp-bladed thing that wasn’t designed to slice a loaf of bread, but I wanted to be a new monster hunter recruit. I wanted part of the camaraderie, the solidarity, I wanted to have my friend’s back as he dealt to a master vampire. That’s the sort of book this is.
It’s a long book, but it’s effortless. There’s a lot of story in it, and none misplaced, none that drags. Even while I was chewing on my nails reading it, I was having fun. The great news is, that it’s the first book in a series, so I’m pretty sure my new best friends are going to go on to save the world a few more times, all so I don’t have to worry about the beasties and ghosties. On the other hand, I think I might want a new career as a Monster Hunter. What about you? Read the book and see for yourself.