Hunting Mariah by J. E. Spina
J. E. Spina creates a haunting thriller in Hunting Mariah, in which she introduces a serial killer with an agenda: to kill Mariah. All his other murders are practice or collateral damage towards this ultimate goal. However, Mariah has been unaware of this killer’s plans for years. She is carefully protected by those around her. Nonetheless, the killer must eventually conquer his goal, and the book approaches its climax with bloodshed and close encounters.
Hunting Mariah has a good plot concept with a murderer who has an ultimate endpoint. He has a tremendous blood lust, but killing Mariah is his ultimate motivation, making the reader think that his killing spree could end with her. Spina also has an interesting method of revealing the plot, mainly through Mariah’s flashbacks after she is brought into psychiatric care. Even the background of the killer is brought forward in pieces. The reader is carefully given clues throughout the book as to why the killer is so focused on Mariah. While Spina is a good descriptive writer, particularly when detailing the mind of the killer, the dialogue can become cliché at times. The plot can feel disjointed since the chapters are often very short, which breaks up the plot and causes the reader to switch focus often. This book could also use a heavy editor’s hand because there are switches in tense and points of view and it lacks punctuation in parts. Overall, Hunting Mariah is a unique read that one does not often encounter.
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