The most unlikely duo tackles the case of a missing child while exploring the mysteries of our own memories and the darkest puzzles of our society. A story that can be read in a couple of hours but that will stay with you forever.
At first glance, Hugo Berenson is just an old man with a knack for fitness living in “the armpit of America”. But Hugo used to work for the Mossad hunting escaped Nazis, which makes him Rosa’s family’s best ally when Diamante, their young girl, is taken. He might also be Diamante’s kidnapper’s worst enemy. Who took Diamante and why? Will Hugo be able to get her back? Gray Hunter by Mark Rogers is a crime thriller novella that follows Hugo and Diamante’s sister, Maria, in their quest to find the poor lost girl. Much more than that, Gray Hunter is also
a commentary on age, the power of the past over our present, and families. The author aced it by pairing a young Latina lesbian with an old Nazi hunter. Not only do we always appreciate diversity but also I couldn’t picture a more unique, lethal, or memorable duo than Maria and Hugo.
Gray Hunter is a powerful novella that makes the case for brevity. Mark Roger proves we don’t need fancy purple prose or endless descriptions to perfectly convey a feeling. Take, for example, the following description: “The kind of man who walked from job to bed and back again on sore feet.” We can picture this man, his sour smell, and his broken dreams. He probably lives in a dingy flat that reeks of hopelessness. With short, powerful statements like this, we get a compelling story in about an hour and a half. Because let’s face it, we don’t all have the time to pick Proust-length novels every day. And isn’t it marvelous that it doesn’t limit our reading enjoyment?
In such a few pages, the author packed enough twists to keep us glued to the book but not that many to make the story unfathomable. On the contrary, I can actually see this happening. The fantastic, realistic dialogues help a lot in bringing this story to life. Furthermore, while thankfully we don’t all hunt ex-Nazis or have lost relatives, the struggles of the characters are relatable: family issues, grudges, and preconceptions are all things we experience.
I appreciate the author’s reflection on how our past can influence future actions, but, even more interesting, the possibility that our present actions can influence how we feel about the past.
The author, thankfully, didn’t need to resort to gruesome details to pack a punch. However, I feel compelled to warn sensitive readers and survivors of child abuse to carefully consider if and when to pick this book. This is a great novella for those interested in crime, gangs, and addictions, in exploring how past and present intertwine, how families can be either born in or created, and how people are not always what they seem. This novella is a noir-est version of a Liam Neeson movie, so if that’s your genre, you’ll love “Gray Hunter.” Readers pressed for time rest assured that, with Mark Rogers on the lead, quantity does not sacrifice quality.
- Title: Gray Hunter
- Author: Mark Rogers
- Gene: Crime Thriller
- Theme: Noir, Novella, Thriller
- Publication Date: February 8 2022
- ISBN or ASIN: B09R6ZGQB4
- Number of Pages: 95
- Minimum Audience Age: 18
(Note: 0=none, 1=a few, 2=considerable, 3=pronounced, 4=excessive)
- Sexual themes: 1
- Religious themes: 1
- Violence, self-harm, etc.: 3
- Crude language, expletives, swearing, etc.: 3
- Other adult themes: 4
- Content: 5 stars
- Writing Style: 5 stars
- Appeal to Target Audience: 5 stars
- Uniqueness: 5 stars
- Editing: 3 stars
- Other factors: 5 stars
- Overall: 4.67 out of 5
Book Details Synopsis Hugo Berenson has dedicated his life to tracking out former Nazis and seeing that they are brought to justice. He is now in his sixties and has a storied career behind him; nonetheless, he has gone underground in Jersey City, where he lives a life that is quiet and inconspicuous. Another elderly […]
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