Creature by Hunter Shea is a gut-punch of a novel. It absolutely broke me. It also terrified me for a number of reasons. It is an incredible read that is going to stick with me for a very long time.
I went into this one pretty dark, but Matt (TeamRedmon) sums up my thoughts wonderfully:
This isn’t at all what I thought it would be. It’s so much better.
Let’s dive in!
My Thoughts on Creature by Hunter Shea
The very beginning of this story was absolutely heartbreaking. Seeing poor Kate try to stay strong while dealing with the effects of her illness both physically and mentally, as well as her strength when going to her doctors appointments and getting a series of injections that were experimental… She was a true superhero.
She also had her sidekicks that were heroes themselves! Her husband, Andrew, and their trusty fur-child, Buttons, were there to help in any way they can while keeping their little family together.
One day, Andrew announces that they will be spending the summer in a cabin by a lake in Maine. It sounds idyllic and Kate and Andrew are both really looking forward to it.
Once they arrived at the cabin, I was so excited for them to get some much needed relaxation time. But of course, with her luck, Kate was taken down by a nasty fever right on day one. But the fever wasn’t the worst that would happen within that cabin…
This tale was absolutely brutal and so sad. I really felt for all of the characters. Andrew and Kate were such a beautiful and strong couple. I loved seeing them interact with one another day in and day out. No matter what was thrown at them, they were there for each other with so much love.
The loyalty that little Buttons the Beagle showed for Kate was wonderful. What an amazing dog! He seemed like a trained support dog, but he was just a hound that they had adopted from a shelter. I’m so happy that Kate had this little guy by her side when Andrew was away.
The plot was definitely a slow burn, but when the action catches fire, there’s no putting out the flame until the very last page.
My god, when the action picks up… The gore was intense and written so wonderfully that it was very easy to imagine in your mind with vivid colors!
While reading I just wanted to scream because things just keep getting more and more creepy. Then when the violence begins, that too just gets worse and worse!
The last third of the book is absolutely impossible to put down. So just a heads up there if you find yourself reading close to your bedtime… if you hit that last third, it’ll be a long day the next day because you won’t be able to stop!
My Favorite Passages on Creature
“I’m not sure if you’re aware of this, honey, but I’m corporate America, accomplishing nothing due to a solid slate of meetings is classified as a job well done.”
Kate tried not to fixate on how shitty she felt, hoping Maine would somehow infuse her with the health, both physical and mental, that I’ve been slipping from her grasp like fine sand.
He did know he didn’t want to run into a moose. They were big and nasty and best avoided. He’d watched enough nature shows to understand that if he saw a moose, it was in his interest of self-preservation to skedaddle. He was pretty sure Buttons would have no problem beating a hasty retreat as well. The dog was no hero. Or maybe he was just old and wise.
Was there a scent to evil?
Nothing was more terrifying than people gone bad, their brains rotting like spoiled meat in the sun. Of all the atrocities Kate had been witness to during her life, all of them have been perpetrated by people, not monsters. The bogeyman didn’t shoot up schools or drive trucks into crowds of people. Ghosts didn’t hijack planes or murder families in their sleep.
People, bad people, did all of those things.
Was one of those bad people out there now?
A nightmare scared Kate awake. The second her eyes opened, the terrifying images faded, shattering like safety glass under a sledgehammer. Her heart was racing, causing pain to ripple out from the center of her chest. She felt the sweat at the back of her neck, her legs tangled in the sheet as if she’d been twisting and turning to get away from something… or someone. Her back ached, heat emanating from between her shoulder blades.
She had turned away, unable to face the grisly vision in the doorway. It was beyond horrible in the light of day. Monsters were only for the night. They were never supposed to walk during the daytime.
My Final Thoughts on Creature
I have such an appreciation for this novel. It was wonderfully written. The characters really came to life and immediately fell in love with both of them and just wanted them to have a beautiful and happy ending. I don’t think I have ever read something that was this heartbreaking and horrific with equal intensity.
I do highly recommend this one, just keep in mind that this one certainly isn’t for the faint of heart!
I personally gave it 4 cups of tea as it’s not a book that I could read over and over and over again, which is how I categorize my 5 cup of tea reads. BUT I will definitely be returning to it again at some point. This is such a powerful read!
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Thanks for reading!