Tuesday, December 11, 2012


Review of The Vivisectionist by Ike Hamill
5 stars

Oh boy, what a book. What a book! Not in almost any way what I expected, but that was fine because the book was a knock-out (in the positive sense). More a logic puzzle and maze than anything else, literally and metaphorically, there was also suspense, worry, fear, danger, secondary plot lines, empathetic characters, and a really powerfully impacting character evolution sequence going, as two of the characters (in order not to spoil the plot, I won’t give their identities) develop in very unexpected ways. I couldn’t sleep last night for thinking through the novel, after I had stayed up late (for me) to finish it.

Jack and Ben are best friends, on the verge of high school, although Jack attends public schools at the directive of his parents, and Ben goes to a private school. With the whole summer ahead of them exempt from structured activities such as camp and enrichment programs, the boys decide to camp out at the end of Jack’s yard. Soon they are joined by Ben’s Boston friend Stephen, whom Jack considers a little too full of himself, and the boys go exploring each day (and night). What they find only begins with two scraggly dudes who target shoot animals for fun; soon their summer is filled with obsession and danger. When they discover an incredibly bizarre situation involving an isolated, abandoned hotel beyond the woods, Jack, Ben, and Stephen become intricately intertwined with events contemporary to their community, and also far in the past.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Mallory,
    Thanks for reading The Vivisectionist and reviewing it here. I'm glad you enjoyed it! If you (or any of your readers) would like to get a free copy of one of my other books, please shoot me an email ( ikehamill@gmail.com ) and I'll send one over.

    Thanks again,