Publication date: July 5, 2016
Publisher: Atria/Bestler Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley for an honest review
An astonishingly inventive and terrifying debut novel about the emergence of an ancient species, dormant for over a thousand years, and now on the march.
Deep in the jungle of Peru, where so much remains unknown, a black, skittering mass devours an American tourist whole. Thousands of miles away, an FBI agent investigates a fatal plane crash in Minneapolis and makes a gruesome discovery. Unusual seismic patterns register in a Kanpur, India earthquake lab, confounding the scientists there. During the same week, the Chinese government “accidentally” drops a nuclear bomb in an isolated region of its own country. As these incidents begin to sweep the globe, a mysterious package from South America arrives at a Washington, D.C. laboratory. Something wants out.
The world is on the brink of an apocalyptic disaster. An ancient species, long dormant, is now very much awake.
How to review The Hatching without giving too much away? That is a difficult question. Obviously the book is about spiders - but not ordinary spiders - not by a long shot. But the uncovering of information about them is part of the creepy fun of the novel.
What I enjoyed as much as the creepy spiders were the characters - and there are several of them to keep up with. They cover quite a large swath of types and personalities. Professor Melanie Guyer is an expert on spiders, so she will of course play a big part in the novel. Her ex-husband is the White House chief of staff to President Stephanie Pilgrim. These are all big players in the novel and in the world of the novel. And I like these characters - their personal troubles, their complicated relationships, their humor -- all part of what makes The Hatching so good. There are several more characters and all are interesting in their own way. However, I have to admit that I think my favorite characters are the two survivalist couples out in Desperation, California, who are preparing for the worst -- they just don't know exactly what it will be. There are Gordo and Amy and Shotgun and Fred. They each have their own survival bunkers and each couple is fun on their own, but when they decide to share the same large bunker, things become even more fun and interesting. I don't know what will happen to them in the end, but I really enjoyed reading about their adventure/nightmare so far.
The Hatching was the creepy-crawliest book I have read in a long time and I was not prepared for the way it ended. When I started reading it, I didn't realize there would be more than one book. The ending is quite a cliffhanger and I am anxiously waiting for the next book. Highly recommended.