The Hunger

The Hunger

Large Print - 2018 | Large print edition.
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"Evil is invisible, and it is everywhere. Tamsen Donner must be a witch. That is the only way to explain the series of misfortunes that have plagued the wagon train known as the Donner Party. Depleted rations, bitter quarrels, and the mysterious death of a little boy have driven the pioneers to the brink of madness. They cannot escape the feeling that someone--or something--is stalking them. Whether it was a curse from the beautiful Tamsen, the choice to follow a disastrous experimental route West, or just plain bad luck--the 90 men, women, and children of the Donner Party are at the brink of one of the deadliest and most disastrous western adventures in American history. While the ill-fated group struggles to survive in the treacherous mountain conditions--searing heat that turns the sand into bubbling stew; snows that freeze the oxen where they stand--evil begins to grow around them, and within them. As members of the party begin to disappear, they must ask themselves "What if there is something waiting in the mountains? Something disturbing and diseased...and very hungry?""--
Publisher: Waterville, Maine : Thorndike Press, a part of Gale, a Cengage Company, 2018.
Edition: Large print edition.
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9781432852085
Branch Call Number: KATSU
Characteristics: 551 pages (large print) : map ; 23 cm.
large print (16 point), rdafs
Alternative Title: Hunger : a novel


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Apr 16, 2021

This was a slow burn of a novel but I enjoyed it a lot. I liked the character backgrounds, weaving in and out of the past to give more meaning to the present predicaments of the characters. Well done.

rsmunoz Nov 05, 2020

What a far-out tale! We all know the tragic fate of the Donner Party, and that alone is incredible reading. Throwing a supernatural slant into their daily troubles makes this a good pick for when you're craving just a little something more to give you the willies. This one had me looking over my shoulder more than once and staring hard at shadows. Strange happenings, bad decisions and deteriorating partnerships create the ideal setting for spooky legends to run amuck in your head. Supernatural aside, the characterizations, although fictionalized, bring the ill-fated pioneers to life. I simply could not get enough. Hooked from the get-go all the way to the end. 4 stars.

Aug 25, 2020

I enjoyed this one a lot more than I thought I would. “Supernatural western” was a genre I didn’t even know existed! I cannot speak to the historical accuracy, obviously the Donner party wasn’t being chased by ghosts(...or were they!?) but it seems like Donner was a pompous jerk with the power of persuasion over people. Maybe that’s how everything was named after him? Truckee Lake becomes Donner Lake, the entire story is remembered as “the Donner Party” though other families were involved. Also I’m pretty sure whoever had the copy I read ate some chocolate chip cookies at some point, as there were crumbs in between some pages. I love when people can get invested into a book that they can’t stop for a snack because they want to keep reading, but at least have some respect for an item that doesn’t belong to you.

JCLKathrynC Mar 23, 2020

Researching the Donner Party and what became of them will either fascinate you or disturb you. This eerie retelling of the wagon train's fate will have you feeling like something or someone is always watching from the tree line. While Katsu never comes out during the narrative to states what "the monster" in the novel is, if you do some research it should lead you to the wendigo. My personal favorite demon from Native American folklore. Wendigos enjoy long hunting trips through wintery forests, have a strong dislike for fire, and have a diet that consists of, well, everyone.

Nov 11, 2019

An eerie novel, rather than scary. Really made me think about how it would feel to be on a wagon train in the mid-1800s, and how I might behave if I were starving and wanted to protect my family.

Jul 18, 2019

A creepy retelling of the Donner party. Katsu creates convincing back stories and motivations for her characters without bogging you down with endless exposition. Not sure which is scarier: the evil presence seemingly hunting them down, or their fellow travellers.

Jun 08, 2019

The Donner Party story is fascinating and horrible enough without adding zombie-esque elements to it. This isn't a terrible book, but actual accounts of what happened at Truckee lake are far more interesting (and disturbing). These were tough people who had to make devastating choices, and turning their lives into a melodramatic, supernatural tall tale skirts the most troubling questions of humanity and survival. Read Daniel James Brown's The Indifferent Stars Above instead.

Mar 25, 2019

It was an easy read because it wasn't written well. It's unfortunate because it was a good story line but they didn't go anywhere with it and afterwards I felt like really.

Mar 23, 2019

Haunting describes this story of the Donner Party. It begins with the mystery why and what happens to of a young boy who disappears from his tent one night early on the trail. Personalities are explained in flashbacks (not too often however). Interesting theory as to the fate of the Donner party. Katsu has taken liberties within her story to make you wonder "IF" that could have really happened.....

Feb 22, 2019

Was unsure whether to begin this book or not because of 1846 setting, but turned out to be a pleasant read. The characters stories were developed nicely allowing you to form a connection and there was just enough action and romance/infidelity to keep the story moving. While not a terrible conclusion, it was quite abrupt and not very detailed.

Starting with a few families on wagons, they merge up to 90+ people strong traveling from Illinois to California in 1846 searching for a rich and more fulfilling life. The most notable families are The Donners (George older rich man with Tamsen young attractive wife and 5 kids), The Reeds (Gay man who married a wife and took on her kids kids), The Graves (Mary young woman who falls for Stanton). Stanton and Bryant are two single men throughout the journey (although Bryant is engaged). Along the journey, the group encounters obstacles on the trail creating problems with their food supply and warmth as winter approaches. If that isn't enough to deal with there is a disease transforming humans into cannibals that attack and transform members of the group.

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