Spiderstalk by D. Nathan Hilliard
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
When his brother's family vanishes, leaving behind only a frantic phone message and a blurry photo of an immense spider, Adam Sellar hires a private detective to find them. He soon finds himself ensnared in a centuries old web of hate between two secret factions...
The cover and prologue made me think this was going to be a book about dog-sized spiders running people down and devouring them. It didn't turn out to be that kind of book at all but I still enjoyed it.
Spiderstalk is the story of two warring native American tribes, The Dog People and The Spider People, who both derive their power from neurotoxin in a particular species of spider's venom. The Dog People merely use the venom but the Spider People live in symbiosis with the giant spiders. Adam Sellars gets caught in the middle when his family takes a wrong turn and falls victim to one of the spiders.
The book this most reminded me of was The Furies, which I read earlier in 2014, although I liked this approach to the "secret beings fighting a secret war among us" much better.
The worldbuilding was top notch, as were the various factions within the Dog People and the Spider People. For a book that I originally thought was going to be a bunch of people killed by giant spiders, things were very intricately plotted regarding the spiders and the history surrounding them. Carbon nanotubes, bitch! Actually, the reason I thought prevented spiders from becoming super huge monsters, namely their book lungs, wasn't mentioned but I really liked that they had webbing and exoskeletons made of naturally occuring carbon nanotubes.
That being said, I thought some of the characters were a little thing and a lot of thriller cliches were present. There wasn't any gun porn, though, so that was a plus.
Spiderstalk was an entertaining thriller not without a lot of creepy bits. And free on the Kindle as well. If you're into spiders, you'll enjoy it quite a bit. 3.5 out of 5 stars.
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