The Hush by John Hart
Finished June 8, 2020.
Synopsis from GoodReads:
Building on the world first seen in The Last Child (“A magnificent creation” —The Washington Post), John Hart delivers a stunning vision of a secret world, rarely seen.
It’s been ten years since the events that changed Johnny Merrimon’s life and rocked his hometown to the core. Since then, Johnny has fought to maintain his privacy, but books have been written of his exploits; the fascination remains. Living alone on six thousand acres of once-sacred land, Johnny’s only connection to normal life is his old friend, Jack. They’re not boys anymore, but the bonds remain. What they shared. What they lost.
But Jack sees danger in the wild places Johnny calls home; he senses darkness and hunger, an intractable intent. Johnny will discuss none of it, but there are the things he knows, the things he can do. A lesser friend might accept such abilities as a gift, but Jack has felt what moves in the swamp: the cold of it, the unspeakable fear.
More than an exploration of friendship, persistence, and forgotten power, The Hush leaves all categories behind, and cements Hart’s status as a writer of unique power.
Easily my favorite book I have read so far this year.
I found this book while doing inventory at my library. Which is an awesome thing because I am getting paid to handle thousands of books, but also a bad thing because I get distracted easily. Because of the thousands of books. It’s quite a circle for me LOL. As I was going through the books this cover caught my eye. It looks so ominous and ti sort of pulled me in. Which I think is exactly what a cover is meant to do. So, I opened the inside flap and started reading and now I am super intrigued.
This book hooked me from page one. Kept me hooked till the end. I am not kidding. I couldn’t put this book down. This almost never happens. There are a few books that hook me from page one but I loose interest quickly, or books that don’t hook me until the middle or end. Very rarely am I hooked from to page one to the end. There were some parts of the book where I had to physically make myself put the book down because it got heavy. Not in the weight sense, but in the emotional and mental sense.
I think I love this book because it had a uncomplicated main character. It was so refreshing. Johnny was exactly who he was and there were zero apologies from him. A lot of MC’s are complicated and they have this huge back story and all this emotional baggage to go along with them. Johnny definitely has the emotional baggage but he is simple. There is no drama, no underlying meaning to any of his words. Simple. And I loved it. We are first introduced to The Hush. 6,000+ acres of wild land in Raven County, North Carolina. Immediately we are submersed into this forest and are filled with a sense that this is not a normal place something out there lurks, waiting patiently, and Johnny is connected to it. No, if that doesn’t make you pick this book up, I’m not sure what will.
I suppose I should tell you, this is the second book by John Hart in the Johnny Merrimon series. I didn’t know that when I started reading this book. It can definitely be read as a stand alone. Hart does an amazing job of keeping the reader current with what is happening. Hart tells the history of Johnny and frequently touches on it throughout the story so you’re not in the dark on what happened so you don’t feel lost in this second book. In fact, I felt very up to date on everything happened and I can appreciate that in a sequel.
This book has something for every reader. Well, maybe not the romantic… It has suspense (SO much suspense), a wonderful thrill, mystery, dark, bloody, definitely some major cringe moments, deep family ties, crime, and magic. Hart does a beautiful job of weaving all these elements together and he does it so well you are not the least bit confused throughout the book. The ending was a surprise, too. I love when that happens. You go the whole book thinking it is one thing, and it turns out to be something completely opposite. It was fantastic to be surprised.
I definitely recommend this book, and I will keep my eye out for other books by John Hart.