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The Fervor (2022)

de Alma Katsu

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2548104,784 (3.65)1
Fiction. Horror. Thriller. Historical Fiction. HTML:The acclaimed author of the celebrated literary horror novels The Hunger and The Deep turns her psychological and supernatural eye on the horrors of the Japanese American internment camps in World War II.
1944: As World War II rages on, the threat has come to the home front. In a remote corner of Idaho, Meiko Briggs and her daughter, Aiko, are desperate to return home. Following Meiko's husband's enlistment as an air force pilot in the Pacific months prior, Meiko and Aiko were taken from their home in Seattle and sent to one of the internment camps in the Midwest. It didn??t matter that Aiko was American-born: They were Japanese, and therefore considered a threat by the American government.
 
Mother and daughter attempt to hold on to elements of their old life in the camp when a mysterious disease begins to spread among those interned. What starts as a minor cold quickly becomes spontaneous fits of violence and aggression, even death. And when a disconcerting team of doctors arrive, nearly more threatening than the illness itself, Meiko and her daughter team up with a newspaper reporter and widowed missionary to investigate, and it becomes clear to them that something more sinister is afoot, a demon from the stories of Meiko??s childhood, hell-bent on infiltrating their already strange world.  
 
Inspired by the Japanese yokai and the jorogumo spider demon, The Fervor explores the horrors of the supernatural beyond just the threat of the occult. With a keen and prescient eye, Katsu crafts a terrifying story about the danger of demonization, a mysterious contagion, and the search to stop its spread before it's too late. A sharp account of too-recent history, it's a deep excavation of how we decide who gets to be human when being human matters most.&
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Es mostren 1-5 de 8 (següent | mostra-les totes)
I loved the beginning. I loved the characters. I especially loved Fran. The folklore was really interesting. Aiko's visions were wild and she was an excellent kid - I wanted more of her.

A little over three-quarters of the book Katsu seems to forget that she's writing a mystery with hints of supernatural horror. The whole book just falls apart. Aiko isn't special anymore, she's just a brave little girl. Fran disappears. The elements that made it exciting are no longer special. The climax of the book is like a firecracker that fizzles out.

The resolution felt unsatisfying and tacked on. I'm disappointed. ( )
  rabbit-stew | Dec 31, 2023 |
An interesting book in which I learnt a lot about a slice of history I knew nothing about. As always, Katsu's ability to realise history is highly accessible and and produces a fascinating insight into something she has clearly well researched knowledge about.

Unfortunately the story is let down by the supernatural element. Bringing in Yokai to mix into the story was an amazing idea, but they barely seem to gel neatly with the story. Instead they feel like something that happens superfluous to the (much superior) historical narrative going on. Compare that to the seamless intwining of the horror and history in The Hunger and this is somewhat of a let down.

It's still an enjoyable and fascinating book, but sadly didn't blend horror and history in a strong enough way to make it one of her best ( )
  KevDS | Sep 18, 2023 |
I wanted to read this book because I loved Jenkins' novel about Evelyn Hugo. I was also intrigued by the story line about the Japanese internment camps in our country, which is a dark stain in American history. Many American-born and naturalized Japanese citizens were sent to the camps where they endured crowded, unhealthy conditions. The round up of so many Japanese left citizens of other Asian descent wearing signs that denoted they were Chinese, Korean or another Asian ethnicity for fear of being imprisoned. This novel has several areas of interest for everyone - history, fiction and elements of the supernatural.

Meiko is a Japanese woman married to a Caucasian fighter pilot who is serving his country while she and their daughter are imprisoned in a concentration camp, which seems like a horrible travesty. When a strange disease breaks out in the camp and threatens to spread to the nearby town, the officials are very concerned. This also gives the townspeople yet another reason to revile the camp inmates. One of the aspects of this disease is the appearance of mysterious spider demons, which is where the supernatural emerges. Unlike some readers, I am not a fan of supernatural occurrences; hence, my 3-star rating. ( )
  pdebolt | Sep 7, 2023 |
I really wanted to like this one, but it just didn't land for me. This book takes place during the Japanese Internment during WWII and is partially set in one of the camps. A mysterious disease starts spreading in the camp and in rural areas in the US. Is is man made? Biological? Supernatural? Sounds like a great premise, right?

The problem is that the book has a point it wants to make about xenophobia and anti-Asian violence and it misses no opportunity to do so, to the point of hitting you over the head with it at points. I think this point could have been made much more subtly if, for example, some people who became infected exhibited anti-Asian rage while others targeted Germans or communists or atheists or other groups. Instead literally every infected person hates Japanese people specifically with no other demonstrated targets of their rage and paranoia. ( )
  Jthierer | Dec 23, 2022 |
Alma Katsu does it again! A blend of historical fiction and horror, she melds a tale of fighting off a potential pandemic (caused by tiny spiders), and that of the stupidity of racism, in this case towards the Japanese Americans who were shamefully intervened in camps during WW2.

The central characters are Meiko and Aiko, mother and daughter interned in a camp in Idaho, while their husband/father, a white man, is fighting as a pilot in the Pacific. The book slowly unfolds as the residents of the internment camp, and the guards, start to become infected with a disease that makes them go insane. Other areas in the Northwest of the US start to have the same issues, and may be related to Japanese balloons that land in various parts of the area. The suspense mounts as the novel progresses, and without revealing any plot elements, keeps the reader glued to the book. At the same time, Katsu skillfully weaves in a tale of anti Asian sentiments and actions mounted not just by the guards at the camp, but also a white nationalist group which figures in more prominently later in the group.

All in all, a great read.

My thanks to Penguin Group Putnam and to Netgalley for providing an ARC of The Fervor in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  luke66 | Oct 22, 2022 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 8 (següent | mostra-les totes)
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To my mother, Akiko Souza, for her stories of childhood in Japan during the war, and my father-in-law, John Katsu, for sharing his experience of the internment.
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Fiction. Horror. Thriller. Historical Fiction. HTML:The acclaimed author of the celebrated literary horror novels The Hunger and The Deep turns her psychological and supernatural eye on the horrors of the Japanese American internment camps in World War II.
1944: As World War II rages on, the threat has come to the home front. In a remote corner of Idaho, Meiko Briggs and her daughter, Aiko, are desperate to return home. Following Meiko's husband's enlistment as an air force pilot in the Pacific months prior, Meiko and Aiko were taken from their home in Seattle and sent to one of the internment camps in the Midwest. It didn??t matter that Aiko was American-born: They were Japanese, and therefore considered a threat by the American government.
 
Mother and daughter attempt to hold on to elements of their old life in the camp when a mysterious disease begins to spread among those interned. What starts as a minor cold quickly becomes spontaneous fits of violence and aggression, even death. And when a disconcerting team of doctors arrive, nearly more threatening than the illness itself, Meiko and her daughter team up with a newspaper reporter and widowed missionary to investigate, and it becomes clear to them that something more sinister is afoot, a demon from the stories of Meiko??s childhood, hell-bent on infiltrating their already strange world.  
 
Inspired by the Japanese yokai and the jorogumo spider demon, The Fervor explores the horrors of the supernatural beyond just the threat of the occult. With a keen and prescient eye, Katsu crafts a terrifying story about the danger of demonization, a mysterious contagion, and the search to stop its spread before it's too late. A sharp account of too-recent history, it's a deep excavation of how we decide who gets to be human when being human matters most.&

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Mitjana: (3.65)
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3 14
3.5 3
4 18
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