Originally self published in 2006, British author Moody’s thriller concerns a young father who attempts to save himself and his family from a world moving inexorably and mysteriously toward chaos and violence.
Danny McCoyne spends his days plugging away at a thankless, unfulfilling job as a minor bureaucrat in an unnamed English city. His relationship with his wife and kids suffers the occasional stress-related strain. Money is tight, and his prospects are few and distant. Still, he’s a decent enough bloke, and definitely not the sort to think in violent terms. So when he witnesses a series of brutal attacks, he’s somewhat at a loss. Were these isolated instances or signs of something larger? Danny isn’t the only one noticing the uptick in violence, however. Soon news reports are full of stories about Haters—once well-behaved, normal people who begin unleashing vicious, seemingly unprovoked attacks on friends, family members and strangers with often homicidal aggression, and no one seems to know why. After things start getting really out of hand, Danny begins to suspect that something big may be happening, something which the powers that be want to keep quiet. He just needs to keep his family and himself alive long enough to figure out what’s happening. The novel moves at a deliberate, relentless pace, feeding readers just enough information to keep them perplexed and paranoid, and the depiction of a society being rent at the seams by violence rings true. Moody creates some truly chilling scenes, but there are also flashes of black comedy.
At times savagely brutal—the moments of outrageous violence may be considered over-the-top by some readers—but engrossing and effective.