Received as an ARC from Simon & Schuster for an unbiased review via NetGalley 08/06/2013.
The Troop is not made for the faint of heart. Cutter skilfully develops a plot which not only creates emotional connections with Max, Ephraim, Shelley, Kent and Newton, but also describes with disturbing realism
the gore, bloodletting and violence each boy experiences. I would not suggest this in any way to younger readers, and most certainly not to anyone who dislikes books centered around genetically modified parasites developed to be both aggressive and massive.
The story begins by introducing you to Tim, the scoutmaster and the boys’ reason for visiting Flagstaff Island, PEI. Scout Troop 52 is your typical fun loving, boyishly aggressive group that’s perhaps on their last summer outing before the summers on Flagstaff Island are memories far in the past. Tim is a forty-something single man, who the locals think is gay but a proficient doctor. It is he who arranges the yearly trips like clockwork, and teaches the boys about wilderness survival. Each year is very much the same, until this year when a man stumbles into their camp, and hell breaks loose
Although fantastically written, well researched and extremely scary, it’s unsettling how candid the author can be about subjects that are perhaps socially unaccepted homicidal tendencies. I had a hard time putting this one down, but also had to leave the lights on when I went to bed. Unlike most books we see today in any theme, Cutter lives up to his name by cutting
out all the unnecessary details and developing a story that is both frightening, heart breaking and revolting. The story had some very touchy subjects, as well as shockingly well described animal abuse, homicidal behaviours and unsavoury decision making on the part of both a major character and some minor characters.