Pig Island by Mo Hayder
Finished: June 28, 2008
First Published: 2006, (UK), 2007 (Canada)
Reason for Reading: Harper Collins Canada sent me a review copy of the paperback which was released this year (2008). This is the last Mo Hayder book I haven't read. GRTB pick. Chunkster Challenge
The alarms first went off in my head when the landlord and the lobsterman
showed me what had been washed up on the beach.
Comments: Joe Oakes is a journalist who visits an obscure religious sect living on a remote island in Scotland nicknamed "Pig Island" because of the number of pigs once living there. The locals on the mainland are terrified of the religious group, they think they may be satanists and a monster, maybe even the Devil himself walks on the island. This is because of a video which was recently captured by fisherman at sea which shows the blurry form of a tall human shaped figure with a large tail.
Appearances can be deceiving could be the moral of this story. Nothing is as it seems. Most of the publisher write-ups for this book make it sound like a supernatural or even a horror book, but it is not. While very different from Hayder's other books this is indeed a thriller with an evil being (though human) who kills horrifically. As usual Hayder finds an extremely unusual and discomforting topic as the focus for this thriller. In classic Hayder style the plot starts off quietly and slowly the tension mounts until the reader is aware of something frightening lurking in the shadows and then tension races unbearably to the fascinating and unsettling ending. Mo Hayder is known for her unhappy endings and you can expect the same here.
This is not Mo Hayder's best book. I have to say it is my least favourite to date. But even when she is not at her best she is still miles above other writers in this genre. I guessed what the twist ending would be fairly early on and was hoping it would turn out differently as it was rather predictable and not up to her usual jaw-dropping twists. But nevertheless, Hayder's books are always worth reading. If you are new to her pick a different one than Pig Island to start with.
P.S. Please help me out with suggestions of documentary TV Shows suitable for kids in my post here. Thanks!