Mass Hysteria was a brutal horror novel, which reminded me of the horror being written in the late 70's and, (all of the), 80's. Books like James Herbert's The Rats or Guy N. Smith's The Night of the Crabs. There are a lot of similarities to those classics here-the fast paced action going from scene to scene-with many gory deaths and other sick events. In fact, I think Mass Hysteria beats out those books in its sheer horrific brutality.
I'm not going to go into the plot very much-it's there in the synopsis for you. As a set up for the savage action to come, meteor showers are as good as anything else. The fact that the sickness hits the animals first and turns them from wonderful pets, police dogs, etc...and turns them into violent killing machines was heartbreaking. I felt more sympathy for the animals in this book than I did for most of the humans. Almost all of the people in this book were not likable. In fact, many of them were abhorrent, promiscuous or just plain stupid. That was okay though, because they got exactly what they deserved.
There was a good amount of sex here, interspersed with the horror, and the word "empurpled" was used a few times. (It made me chuckle every time!) Be prepared though, as the sex was not always with live humans.
Which brings me to my next point, this book is not for the easily offended. It's not for the horror novice who is new to the genre and all its various offerings. I think Mass Hysteria is best enjoyed by the experienced horror fan. Humans and animals alike are killed in all kinds of nasty ways. There is necrophilia, there is bestiality...are you seeing my point here? If even the very thought of these things disgusts you, this is not the book for you.
My last thought to share with you is about the ending: LOVED. IT. !! Keeping in tone with the style of the book up that point, Mr. Hicks did not shy away from the, (what I thought was), inevitable finish. I like and respect that!
If the subjects I mentioned above tend to make you shy away from a story, this one is probably not for you. However, if these subjects and the brutal kills and gore ARE your cuppa, then you should head over to Amazon right now and one-click this bad boy.
Recommended for hard core fans of the genre!
You can get your copy here:Mass Hysteria
*Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.*