Scavenger Hunt by Michaelbrent Collings is a wild tale of five people taking part in a twisted scavenger hunt. The stakes are high; the result of not following the rules or accomplishing the task in time is instant death.
I had a blast reading this! Though I do side eye my Apple watch every now and again, hoping that it doesn’t beep and have a voice give me a task. My reaction to my notifications hits a bit differently now. Phew.
Full disclosure: I was offered a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. However, as his ebooks were all 99 cents to help give people affected by the pandemic reading material, I bought the copy myself (along with some other books!). Of course, this did not affect my review in any way.
Content Warnings: Child endangerment, drug use, human trafficking, and other related items.
Let’s dive in!
My Thoughts on Scavenger Hunt by Michaelbrent Collings
When the story begins, we get bits and pieces of police interviews, youtube video comments, and other little bits of information that show us that something is not right.
Then we meet five strangers that have all just woken up in a room with collars on their necks and smartwatches on their wrists. While they struggle to come to terms with what this could mean, someone wearing a mask pops on an iPad to introduce himself as Mr. Do-Good. Then he tells them the game.
These five strangers then embark on a scavenger hunt. But of course, this isn’t a fun hunt. It’s life or death.
One of my favorite elements of horror stories is when we kick off diving right into the initial burst of action, but then as the story continues on, we jump backward to fill in the gaps so we better understand what’s going on. The use of that element here was absolutely brilliant! I loved learning more about each player in this terrible game.
This is one that I would love to go on and on about, but I’ll leave it at that for you to discover on your own!
My Favorite Passages from Scavenger Hunt
Green lights were usually a good sign, he knew. But they had a disturbing tendency to change to red. And somehow he doubted that, if such a change occurred on his collar, it would signal a party or a lotto win.
Houses didn’t so much line the street as lean awkwardly beside it. Roofs that had been built straight now lurched to the side or drooped in the middle. Lawns were scrub brush and dirt and a weird collection of lawn ornaments that Solomon guessed were meant to brighten the place up but instead just made it all seem like a scene from a horror movie.
But the man’s greed overwhelmed his disgust. He took the package between a thumb and forefinger, looking at it the way he might stare at a cockroach that had crawled outta his asshole.
Hope was the most dangerous of feelings, because it was the only one that existed in places where you had nothing but hope… and so it was the only thing that could still be taken away.
…evil people always say they’re acting for the greater good, and the worst of them actually believe it…
The dead could not be brought back. But the guilty would not enjoy what they had stolen.
My Final Thoughts on Scavenger Hunt
I keep seeing mentions of the Saw movies when this book comes up. I LOVE that this tale has a nod to that series. I would say a few elements were similar, but it was less gory. But don’t get me wrong, this tale has its fair share of gore to be sure! It also has plenty of gut-punch moments and a lot more action and suspense.
If you enjoy horror tales packed to the brim with action, very interesting characters, and that will keep you guessing until the final puzzle piece falls into place… you gotta pick this one up.
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Thanks for reading!
And shout-out again to Michaelbrent for putting this tale on my radar!