‘This was the sound of death. The door hand began to turn, there was another snort of breath, then ‘ A gunshot, followed by someone yelling, then more gunshots.’
Fear of uncertainty and of the unknown with the ultimate culmination of these being death, is the driving force that powers all horror. Psychological horror, however, takes this one step further examining the means and manners via which we are able to exert control over our lives and the types of influence and affect that cause their gradual corrosion.
‘Hunting Season’, Dean Vincent Carter’s second novel explores and unpicks these ideas through the balancing of juxtaposing ideas. Lack of control arises when experience dictates that these contradictions are no longer capable of equilibrium.
Urban influences are pitted against those of nature, visibility in lightness in marked, stark contrast against the obfuscations of darkness, most significant of all, however, is the interplay between the tamed and the wild as urges and desires are painted against societal control and civilisation.
Set eight years after an accident in Austria that apparently killed both of his parents, Gerontius Moore (named after Elgar’s ‘The Dream of Gerontius’) is living with his Aunt and Uncle when he becomes unwittingly embroiled with gangland activities in an abandoned theatre. Played out in this theatrical setting, the first part of the drama takes on a post-modern level of self-awareness. This develops in quick-fire succession to endeavours to escape being the ‘hunted’ of the title and for Gerontius, to learn more about the death of his immediate family. A heart-thumpingly gripping read with revelation and surprise at every turn!