I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga
Release Date: April 3rd, 2012
Little, Brown and Company, 361 Pages
Source: Advance Reader Copy
Age Group: Young Adult
Series: Jasper Dent #1
What if the world’s worst serial killer…was your dad?
Jasper “Jazz” Dent is a likable teenager. A charmer, one might say.
But he’s also the son of the world’s most infamous serial killer, and for Dear Old Dad, Take Your Son to Work Day was year-round. Jazz has witnessed crime scenes the way cops wish they could—from the criminal’s point of view.
And now bodies are piling up in Lobo’s Nod.
In an effort to clear his name, Jazz joins the police in a hunt for a new serial killer. But Jazz has a secret—could he be more like his father than anyone knows?
If you asked me to describe this book in one word, I would say it was CREEPALICIOUS.
Jazz is 17 years old and is kind of an outcast in his hometown. But not because he’s weird (he’s super charming) or because he’s ugly (he’s quite attractive) but because his dad is serving 25 Life Sentences for murder. Jazz is the world’s most notorious serial killer’s son. And when girls start showing up dead, Jazz is determined to prove to the town that he is not the killer. But in this nature vs nurture battle, where both sides seem to be against him, how will Jazz come out “normal”? And can he be “normal”, even if he wants to?
First, I love how Barry snuck in something that relates to every single teenager out there (you know, in case you didn’t connect with the whole serial killer parent thing). The question: WILL I TURN OUT LIKE MY PARENTS?! (O_O) Ahem, sometimes this isn’t a bad thing (in Jazz’s situation it is, of course). But really, everyone has either experienced or seen “those parents”, the ones who push and push their children to be like them or the “stage moms” who push their kids to do something because they themselves wanted to do it when they were younger.
This book truly is unlike anything out there right now in YA. And there are so many things about its uniquity that I enjoyed. It’s told from third person . Today, there are SO MANY books that are first person and it’s so nice sometimes to be TOLD a story; to be an observer and try to figure things out instead of “experiencing it” from first person. Also, there is the fact that the reader can hear Billy’s voice (Jazz’s serial killer father) in Jazz’s head – it seriously adds to the creepy factor (and if you ever get to hear Barry Lyga speak, IT IS SERIOUSLY EERIE and I love it.).
I Hunt Killers is a face-paced page turner that will keep you on the edge of your seat. And at the end, you’re still on the edge – begging for more.
PS- While I did enjoy this book very much, I would not recommend it to readers under the age of 16. I have no doubt that there are children younger than 16 that could handle some of the content, but 16+ is just my person opinion/recommendation.