The safe zone:
Run was a terrifying but interesting book. It was a quick read (I finished it within two sittings and would have probably done it in one if my professors didn’t demand my full attention during class.) I give this book a four and a half out of five stars and highly recommend it to anyone looking for a thrilling, creepy, fast-paced read.
All are Spoilers that Reside Here:
I enjoyed Run because of the way it analyzed the psychological effects of being hunted. Each child in this novel reacted differently to the pressure. There were the ones who became very animalistic and let their panic control their actions (needless to say these people died quickly) and then there were those characters who chose to bargain with their pursuers in the attempt of gaining favor and safety at the cost of other people’s lives. Not to mention the pack mentality developed by our merry band of heroes as they fight to survive. I enjoyed the realistic ways in which characters either broke down or fortified themselves and, honestly, felt that was the main purpose and strength of this novel.
Reid was an interesting character and I enjoyed his ingenuity and ability to survive. However, as much as I liked his character, he wasn’t my favorite character. Drew was, which is why I was devastated when he died. I felt Drew had the most character growth in this novel and I connected with him immediately because in normal society he would be the shy, bullied nerd but when push came to shove he was strong. I mean, how many people, as they are lying there bleeding out, have the courage to blow themselves up for the sake of either taking out a hunter or delaying them enough that your comrades can escape? My experience has been not many since the last moments are usually spend agonizing over the fact that person doesn’t want to die. Drew was such an awesome character and I wish very much he could have carried on.
The hunters were interesting in their own right. I loved the way they hunted in a pack in the same way wolves do but that also terrified me and gave me nightmares. The fact that these hunters are not human fascinates me because it begs the question of what are they and why are they here in this fenced in zone eating kids. What’s also interesting about the hunters is that they are actively toying with their prey and therefore show an immense amount of calculation and conscious thought in every action they make. This makes them even more dangerous than most predators because they are capable of great cruelty. I found this most prominent and most pee-in-your-pants scary when, after eating two kids, the hunters turned and grinned at Reid who had been hiding nearby. They had not only known he was there but chose not to kill him and taunted him. This is behavior not commonly seen in animals who are hunting for survival. It is as though someone took all the things that make animals deadly and powerful and crossed it with everything that makes humans deadly and powerful to create this creature with the skills to take down two armed special forces in the blink of an eye and the forethought to make pacts with some kids for easy meals. To me, that makes them fascinating to consider (and also makes me afraid to go out in the woods alone.)
I’m extremely curious where the series can go from here since the ending left the kids sealed into a mine. I don’t believe they have seen the last of the hunters but now the dynamics of the story must change with the new territory and I can’t wait to pick up the next book to see how it turns out. I recommend reading this book and the rest of the series in the day, for those who are as easily freaked out by scary things as I am.