Title: I Hunt Killers
Author: Barry Lyga
Pub: 2012; Little Brown & Company
Genre: Young Adult, Horror, Series, Suspense
I FREAKIN' LOVED THIS BOOK.
Seriously. It was amazing and got me all creeped out in this most-excellent-stephen-king-meets-criminal-minds sorta way.
I want everyone to read this book. Well, everyone who is slightly warped and okay with criminal profiling and sociopathic behavior etcetera etcetera.
Jazz is seventeen years old and lives with his going-nuts grandma in a sleepy small town in nowheresville. It would be all lame and normal except Jazz's father is in prison. Yup. He's the notorious serial killer, Billy Dent, known for killing over 100 women. And even more perverse? Billy raised Jazz to think like a serial killer, prepped him to follow in his footsteps. Jazz grew up keeping his dad's trophies organized and the details of the murderous acts filed away in his mind for safe keeping. Plus Billy made a point of bestowing words of wisdom, such as: the easiest way to remove evidence of a body (cut it up? use chemicals?); the importance of paying attention to that last breath, and slicing a body is just like slicing chicken. Um, ew.
Jazz wakes up every morning reminding himself that people are real; they feel things.
This novel is a brilliant look at a nearing adult fighting against his nature AND nurture. He's a pro at manipulation. He was trained by the best. He constantly hears dear ole dad's voice in his head and he has to hush his nightmares that are part memories part fears.
And as if that wouldn't be enough to write about THE IMPRESSIONIST shows up. A new serial killer paying homage to Billy and Jazz is determined to figure out who the killer is even if the town thinks he might be the prime suspect.
Also. He has help. This wonderful side-kick best friend, Howie, who is classic nerd with a hemophilia issue. Perhaps not the best man to go into fighting crime with, but he's uber loyal and has a crazy cool sarcastic sense of humor. Oh and then there's Connie, Jazz's girlfriend. She's a hit or miss with me. I mean, she's definitely well written. Her need to show Jazz that he's not his father is SO typical of a teenage girl right? But, you know, even though I'm sure I would totally have been Connie in the same situation, it sorta irks me knowing that and wishing that instead I'd have been more you have issues so deal with them and come to me when you're over it you freak, which she kinda does, but not really.
I got this book from the library but desperately want to go out and purchase my own copy and reread it. Especially because it's a - wait for it....wait for it - part in a SERIES. (Betcha didn't see that one coming, huh?) Don't let that sway you though. Run out and buy this book!