Best Weller's Pick

Every other month the staff of Weller Book Works nominates and then votes on books we deem worthy of extra attention, our Best Weller's selection. We discount these books to you by 20% during the months for which they're chosen because we believe in them.


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The Hunger Cover Image
ISBN: 9780735212510
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - March 6th, 2018

The Donner Party is one of America’s Epic Tales, one that gripped the Nation. The source of many books, yet here is a supernatural twist to the harrowing story. Alma Katsu’s retelling grips you at the start as the rescue team makes its way to a hastily built cabin, the home of the last survivor of the ill-fated team, plowing through snow that is chest deep to their horses. The first thing the team encounters is the smell of carrion. They’d been told that Lewis Keseberg was there and they were to bring him back, alive or not. They approach the cabin slowly with rifles raised. “Several unexpected items lay discarded in the snow: a pocket prayer book, a ribbon bookmark fluttering in the breeze. A scattering of teeth. What looked like a human vertebra, cleaned of skin….”


The Hunger is an eerie, thrilling look at the volatility of human nature pushed to its breaking point. All along the way which is fraught with hardship, depleted rations, bitter quarrels among team member families, and dry desert landscapes, the party members feel an evil presence. As sickness and hunger come they sense something is not right. They point fingers at each other, even the beautiful Tamsen Donner, and suggest she may be a witch. Early on the trail a young boy goes missing. When he is found, the incredibly dismembered body suggests to the party that something evil is following them.


After they stop at Fort Bridger to rest and regroup, they follow the ill-advised directions known as the Hastings Cut-off, a shortcut that was devised by the Western promoter Lansford Hastings. A member of their party goes on ahead with a native guide who returns in fear of the evil lurking ahead.


Alma has used this historical tale and enlivened it with her character development. You feel the conflicts between party members. The thoughts and uneasiness are vividly portrayed.


This book is like one of those horrific photos or news stories that one turns away from but keeps coming back. A quote at the end of one of the later chapter sums up the tale without giving anything away “Then the Lord must be mightily displeased with you, because he has led you into the valley of death. Make peace with your Lord before it is too late, because the hungry ones are coming for you.