Thursday, March 06, 2014

The Last Child by John Hart

The Last Child, John Hart. New York: Minotaur Books, 2009. e-book, 397 pps. including preview from a next novel.

     The Last Child captivated me from the prologue onward. The story opens with a thirteen year old boy named Johnny. He is no ordinary kid. He knows how to drive. To the consternation of the police-- one Detective Hunt in particular-- Johnny will not give up driving.

     Johnny is equally at home in the woods. He knows things. He is a keen observer of animal nature and this ability gets him into trouble.

     Trouble surrounds Johnny. After a family tragedy, a horn-dog named Ken moved on in and his mother is the worst for it. Ken is not a nice man. And Johnny does not trust Detective Hunt.

     There is a cast of characters in The Last Child who are devious and mean. There are murders and manslaughter, betrayals and tests of friendships. And there are the woods of course. Ancient woods with mossy fragrances and dead bodies.

sapphoq reviews says: John Hart delivers a finely-crafted story which transported me into the back country of North Carolina and held me there until the last page. I don't mind a thirteen year old dropping f-bombs in a work of fiction. If you do, then skip this book. Nasty people abound. The Last Child was pure magic-- a coming of age tale that will stay with me for a very long time. Highly recommended.

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