The Scavenger is a new book by Aidan Lucid, author of 'The Lost Son'. There are black and red pages and, most outstandingly, descriptions that reflect key moments in the events. They are great! So if you are a fan of horror, unexplained stories, events that seem straight out of a movie, this book is for you.
The plot, in my opinion, is perfectly in line with the theme, and then I fell in love with the cover - even if unfortunately, I only have the digital version. The cover image perfectly represents that that you can find in these pages.
I particularly enjoyed this book: it is about friendship, relationships, hopes for the future and family. The protagonists are three kids: Jared Duval, Adrian Cole, and Jessica Barlow. They are friends and after a school’s Halloween dance they live the adventure of finding a runaway lost girl.
Without realizing what they are doing, they follow her and comes across an abandoned shack with a well outside. They decide to make a wish and their life changes suddenly that will help them grow and become aware of their future. From that moment everything begins to change. There is a whole world, like a mirage. An imaginary world.
Jared who was bullied earlier and wanted the football captain to like him suddenly finds himself noticed by the football star and a popular boy coming to his defence. Adrian, who was looking for a relationship suddenly finds himself in a new relationship and Jessica who has been tormented by her rude alcoholic mother suddenly finds her mom who cooks breakfast and hands out lunch box instead of insults.
The events intertwine different centuries, which come together in a surprising ending that, in a certain way, can appear open. The timelines are different but they end up merging together, joining the pieces of a puzzle which, however, each time leads you to reflect, to think.
The author is very good at making you feel the anxiety and anguish felt by the protagonists - that feeling of sinking more and more into a vortex of madness. So much so that one constantly wonders if everything is the result of supernatural elements or something more human, but deriving from madness.
What particularly struck me is the description of the characters. Each character has its own characteristic, its own personality. Aidan has the knack of making them seem real. While reading, you get the feeling of having them by your side as they engage in their new realities.
I love the mystery and how Aidan narrates it is something incredible. He gets inside the character and narrates what happened from the perspective of this, letting us know different sensations that the person could feel at the moment in which he lived the experience that was narrated.
The characters, both children and adults, are very well outlined. Furthermore, as the imaginary world advances over the real one, their personalities and minds become diluted. The effect is very successful.
Despite this, their fragility is evident, the fragility of kids. Also, there is tension and fear. The specialty of this author is to show fear on occasions in which each of us can find ourselves. This type of fear shows that you don't need a monster or a ghost or any other supernatural element to be afraid, just man and his daily life. This is a point that makes me love the book over so many others.
The writing is flawless. It is also a perfect novel for both adults and children thanks to the writer's ability to show the normal life of children, their current and typical language of the modernity of the times, and the ability to make extraordinary situations that seem very normal.
It is a story that I liked a lot. In the first part it took me a while to get started, perhaps because it was slower, but after a few chapters, it kept me glued to the pages, also throwing a certain anxiety on me. Eyes that scrutinize, mocking grins, scary apparitions and sounds, disbelief, uncertainty, fears and misunderstandings. Mysteries and events of the past that still burn inside.
For the rest it is a perfect gothic tale that fascinates and in a certain sense frightens. Certainly reading it at night makes you enter even more into the atmosphere. While reading it may happen that you feel observed, jump at noises, as if similar presences could be right behind you, or beyond a glass, or perhaps in the dark, ready to look at you with a mocking grin.
A novel that rides between fantasy and horror, it is a very long, very solid novel with a couple of moments that will stay with the reader forever.