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The #SummerofReckoning: The Hatching

The Hatching Summer of Reckoning

THE HATCHING is a remarkably fun book about the end of the world, and flesh-eating spiders. I know a lot of people are put off by any mention of our little eight-legged friends – more than I would have guessed, as I discovered while talking about this book in publishing meetings and the like – but I want to convince you that you need to put aside your fears and give this a go.

For starters, the author wrote this book precisely because he was afraid of spiders. So scared that he started to wonder why. What basis is there for our widespread ability to shriek when a tiny harmless thing scuttles across our floor? (Not if you’re in Australia, of course. There it’s very logical to be scared). It’s an interesting way of facing your fears. I don’t know if he thinks it worked. I do know that I now send him every creepy spider video, pic or fact that I find, and he doesn’t like it. Did you know that Camel Spiders scream when they run at you? (I know, they’re not really spiders. Bear with me). If you’ve ever wondered why you’re scared of spiders, this book has an explanation. Not a good one, mind…

Secondly, it’s a stonkingly entertaining read. It doesn’t let up, and the multiple characters and viewpoints mean you never know who’s going to live and who’s going to die. It is reminiscent of things like WORLD WAR Z in its structure, but with a closeness and a range of characters you’ll be quickly engaged in. This is truly a global catastrophe, and the differing ways in which people around the world respond to the return of a deadly species of arachnids is great fun.

And lastly, for now, it’s perfect for those of us who like to read about the potential end of the world thanks to unlikely means, rather than nuclear disaster and geopolitical tension. There’s a weird catharsis available when reading books like DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS or LUCIFER’S HAMMER – what would we do? How would we survive? Who do we know who could help us get away? Boone’s tale delivers those feelings in spades, and you’ll be looking around you for escape routes before you’re halfway through the book.

The events related in THE HATCHING are only the first part of a long journey for those characters who survive – I’ve read SKITTER, the second part, and am champing at the bit for book three (things get seriously bad in book two). I hope you’ll join us on the way. And watch out…


the hatching jacket

The Hatching is out now in hardback, ebook and audio download.