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Release Date: May 13, 2012
Publisher: Perry Street Pictures
Synopsis from Goodreads
This thriller story, originally purchased by one of America's most popular storytellers, James Cameron, is now a novel!
What if the worst happens and you're not a policemen, or a soldier, or a spy with weapons training and an iron heart. What if you're a schoolteacher - a mother? In this gritty crime thriller a family vacation takes a vicious turn when a fishing camp is invaded by four armed men. With nothing except her brains, her will, and the element of surprise on her side, Alison must kill or watch her family die. And then, things gets worse.
Brilliant! That is really the only word I have to describe this book. Primal just takes you to a place that is fast paced, aggressive, emotional, and well...primal (couldn't help it). This is a story I will be telling everyone to read because I think it is essential for people to. This may not be based on a real story, but it felt that way. You get an instant connection these characters and the situation that has been forced on to them. One of my favorite reads this year and I can guarantee that it will most likely be one of yours as well.
I love our characters. It feels so real. I couldn't help but just imagine myself and people I know as these characters. It is hard not to place yourself in this book. Our main character Alison is a school teacher, a wife, and a mother. She is a sweet and loving woman who likes to bury herself in books. To treat her son for his birthday, they go on a fishing trip at an old cabin. Sadly, they were not aware of the prisoner (who is on death row) who escaped with his equally psychotic brothers heading at the same lodge. Alison finds herself outside looking in while her son and husband are trapped inside with the murderers. Alison starts off scared, but something quickly takes over her and she will fight to the death to save her family. And all of this happens in the first half of the book. There is not just one climax and then it is over. There is so much more.
I love how we dive into her family and how their lives are after what happened as well. Her husband Hank loves her so much and like at the lodge, he feels helpless to help Alison. There is so much disconnect between them. Hank was a great supporting husband and seeing him struggle with himself and with trying to connect with his wife was heartbreaking. I was most proud of their son Jimmy. Being a kid, he is able to look at the situation in a different way. The more he shares it with his friends, the more he feels like he was part of a game and it doesn't scare him. Then we have Ben, the main criminal. He was nothing like his brothers, he knew the right things to say, how to be calm and had great instincts and it made him more terrifying. All the brothers put you on edge, but Ben was just too calculating.
This book started off as a screenplay which has been purchased by James Cameron himself and for good reason. This book would make a fantastic film. The plot in Primal will have your face buried in it. The suspense and the intensity is almost staggering. You will have a hard time taking your eyes away from it. The story is just incredible because it shows things from both sides. We have Alison trying to save everyone in the cabin and we have the new her adjusting to life after the chaos. Just reading this, you feel all the emotions they are going through and with Alison, it is the toughest. She is lost, full of fear, anxiety, and anger. I won't give too much away, but I couldn't blame her.
Primal is a book that will be stuck in your head for a very long time. It forces you to ask yourself, “What would you do? How far are you willing to go to save those you love?” This is one hell of a debut. Serra has quite honestly written a classic. She even even takes it all a step further by showing us the aftermath. I mean how do you adjust to life after something like this? Can you ever find balance? Can you ever get back to what is normal? Primal definitely strikes a chord especially if you are a mother. This is an intense, psychological thriller that will leave a mark. It holds no punches and it will leave you breathless. If you are looking for a thriller to add to your bookshelf, look no further. Primal is an absolute must read.
*This book belongs to the following challenges*
BCC's 100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge 2012
BCC's Mystery & Suspense Reading Challenge 2012
About D.A. Serra
Serra was a screenwriter for twenty years and recognized by the Writer’s Guild for her long term continuous employment. She has written ten TV movies, six feature films, and numerous TV episodes including two years as a staff writer for NBC. She has taught writing at the University of California, San Diego, Wofford College and at writers’ conferences nationwide. Serra has now turned her attention to novels, and she was honored as a recent recipient of the prestigious Hawthornden Literary Fellowship, and as a semi-finalist for the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Creative Writing Award given by the Faulkner Society in New Orleans, LA.
Born and raised on the East Coast, Serra has lived for many years in Southern California with her husband, three children, and several family dogs.
Her interests include: ballet, music, The Science Network, and Tequila. She travels extensively including: trekking the Gorillas in the Congo, observing the British Columbian Kermode Bear in situ, whale watching, dog-sledding, and helicopter skiing, among others.
Visit D.A. Serra website!
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