Joe Saunders is determined to unravel the mystery surrounding the brutal mauling of his nephew.
Police Chief Maggie Gill is determined to protect the mystery surrounding her family’s deadly secret.
But neither is prepared for the truth when the mystery revealed uncovers the horror that is lurking in the shadows of Dark Hills.
After learning of the disappearance of his nephew, Joe Saunders returns to his childhood home of Dark Hills to aid in the search effort. When Caleb is found, badly mauled and clinging to life, Joe embarks on a mission to find the beast responsible. But the more Joe delves into the fabric of his old hometown, the more he realizes Dark Hills has a dark secret, shrouded for three generations in a deadly code of silence. As Joe unravels the truth behind a series of unexplained animal attacks, murder, and corruption at the highest level of law enforcement, he is led to a final showdown where he must entrust his very life into God’s hands.
So, Mike, this sounds like an interesting premise? Where did you get your idea for The Hunted?
The idea for The Hunted came from the internet. I was surfing one day just looking for ideas or something to spark my imagination and get the wheel churning when I came across this story of a small town in Indiana that reported lion sightings back in the 1920’s. Several of the townsfolk said they saw an African lion in the fields surrounding the town. A couple cows were mauled and eaten. Then the sightings just stopped. No one knows where the lion came from or where it went. I thought it was a pretty neat idea and ran with it. Story born. Happy birthday!
Hmm, I live in Indiana. Wonder if that lion left any off-spring running around? Yikes! What are some of the underlying themes in The Hunted?
Themes are something else, aren’t they? An author can write a story expecting to convey one message and then, when the book’s done, look back and find he’s actually conveyed several messages and none are the one he intended. And then someone can read the book and get something out of it totally different from what the author thought he conveyed.
Here’s one of my favorite questions when I’m answering interview questions…so what themes were you thinking about when you wrote the book?
Here’s what I think the themes are, what I wanted the themes to be when I wrote the book (whether anyone actually finds these themes is another story entirely, and I’m okay with that, really I am, as long as they get something meaningful out of it). One theme is the idea of not putting God in a box, of letting Him be God, letting Him work in your life and do some miraculous things. I think too often we put a leash on God and tell Him what He’s allowed and not allowed to do. That’s not our place. God can do anything He wants to do. He’s the one in charge, remember?
Okay, enough of that. The second theme is the danger of a vengeful heart. Vengeance is a powerful thing; I think that’s why God said He’d take care of it. In the hands of mere mortals, it’s a deadly poison, able to consume a man and turn him into a monster. Revenge is not something we should try to harness. We have no business playing with that fire. In The Hunted we see the end result of a vengeful heart unbound.
Lastly, there’s the theme of forgiveness and acceptance and redemption. Beautiful things we experience from the heart our Heavenly Father and pass on to others.
Praise for The Hunted:
A great first book from an exciting new author! A vicious enemy, a family secret, a thirst for revenge, and a need for reconciliation all drive The Hunted from intriguing beginning to thrilling conclusion. Skillful prose and great storytelling make Mike Dellosso a writer to watch. I can’t wait for his next book!
—Kathryn Mackel, author of Vanished
Mike Dellosso delivers a spine-tingling tale of hidden secrets, buried hopes and second chances. Interwoven through page-turning drama is the truth about vengeance and the triumph of God’s mysterious ways. The Hunted is a story best read with all the lights on and an extra flashlight handy–just in case!
—Amy Wallace, author of Ransomed Dreams