Josh Reviews: Monster Hunter Alpha by Larry Correia

Posted July 29, 2012 by Joshua Burns in / 2 Comments


Monster Hunter Alpha by Larry Correia

Title: Monster Hunter Alpha
Series: Monster Hunter International #3
Author: Larry Correia
Publisher: Baen
Format: Paperback, 552 pages
Published: July 26, 2011
ISBN #: 9781439134580 / 1439134580
Genre: Urban Fantasy
My Copy: borrowed
Rating:Paw RatingPaw RatingPaw Rating
Buy:Amazon.comTBDChapters Indigo Icon

Dirty Harry meets Twilight. #3 in the break-out series and a follow-up to Monster Hunter International and Monster Hunter Vendetta.

Earl Harbinger may be the leader of Monster Hunter International, but he’s also got a secret. Nearly a century ago, Earl was cursed to be werewolf. When Earl receives word that one of his oldest foes, a legendarily vicious werewolf that worked for the KGB, has mysteriously appeared in the remote woods of Michigan, he decides to take care of some unfinished business. But another force is working to bring about the creation of a whole new species of werewolf. When darkness falls, the final hunt begins, and the only thing standing in their way is a handful of locals, a lot of firepower, and Earl Harbinger’s stubborn refusal to roll over and play dead.

Here’s a sample of Larry Correia’s prose punch from series opener, Monster Hunter International: “I didn’t wake up that morning and decide that I was going to kill my boss with my bare hands. It was much more complicated than that.”

Violent book – Gore factor through the roof – Large overarching story with lots of well-developed protagonists – Not a bad book to come into the middle of a series for – Written with a gun nut in mind

Some of the protagonists in miniature:

Let’s start with Earl Harbringer, the harpoon at the center of this tale. He’s supposed to have a Southern accent but often I couldn’t sound that out in my mind’s eye. He reminds me most of Clint Eastwood and Tom Clancy protagonists, old but incredibly adept. You will be rooting for him.

Heather Kerkonen, a redheaded police lieutenant, carries over most of Earl’s traits (except the stale doughnut addiction which is entirely hers). She manages to impress even under Earl’s tremendous influence.

Stark and Horst, bureaucrat and entrepreneurial monster hunter, flaunt the moral underside in this book, the first being manipulative and the latter cowardly. Their presentation came across as a little simplistic.

Although The Alpha, “the villain”, receives plenty of screen time his motives and psychology remain opaque.

Nikolai, the Russian, gets the most short-changed. He suffers from a split personality, his wolf side having overtaken half his mind. His story of lost love appears pretty powerful but we hear little about it.

The interweaving of these narratives is can’t-put-the-book-down-paced. For a book so over the place I was surprised how many of these characters actually seemed well done. There is a heavy focus on action but I was pleasantly surprised to find a budding romance. The book is a lot like Discount Armageddon except without the dancing or the weird monsters. All in all, I would prefer that to this book. They both hammer on the action note a lot but Discount Armageddon managed to be more humorous in its plotting. I mean both of them have end of the world stakes but Correia challenges Earl to an unbelievable point.

Books in this series:
Monster Hunter International Monster Hunter Vendetta Monster Hunter Alpha

Recommendation: Firearms on every page, minimal fireworks
Like this, like that: Incryptid series by Seanan Mcquire (can’t wait till more is added to this series), the Iron Druid Chronicles series by Kevin Hearne and some book by Tom Clancy

Josh

About the Blogger
I review Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance books with a focus all things werewolf. Based out of Ottawa, Canada

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Reviews UF/PR novels with an eye for weres of all kinds.

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2 responses to “Josh Reviews: Monster Hunter Alpha by Larry Correia

  1. It was good to hear thought on Monster Hunter Alpha. I read the first two and liked them but my yet to read the third and I think the fourth is about to come out. Maybe my TBR pile will go down and I will get to this one.