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Off Season Mass Market Paperback – 1 Jun 2006


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Mass Market Paperback, 1 Jun 2006
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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Leisure Books; Reprint edition (1 Jun 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0843956968
  • ISBN-13: 978-0843956962
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 10.8 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 261,928 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Bladder Monkey on 18 Jan 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I was looking around for some new horror writer after exhausting King, Herbert and Christopher Fowler. Got this book through Amazon and nailed it in 2 days. This is a fanasticaly gory, exciting, brilliantly paced book. It's bascially a story of survival and inner strenghth when faced with some of the most brutal and sickening scenes I have ever read think "The hills have eyes" and "Deliverence"

Would recommened this to anyone who likes to be scared.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By TD on 8 Mar 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Reading the reviews about this book I was eager to start reading it as everyone made it sound so good. I must say that I was very dissapointed. I cant understand why people have put that its not for the faint hearted. I must say that I am a seasoned horror reader and have read far far worse than this on the horror scale. I thought the story was slow to get started and was even boring as it focused on the travelling of the characters. I was not in the least shocked or scared at any time during the book as this is standard stuff for a horror read. People who think this story is shocking have obviously not ventured far with their horror authors. My guess is this is loved by fans of Richard Laymon.
But of course, this is only my view, everyone is different
Thank You
TD
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Jolley HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 28 Nov 2002
Format: Paperback
First and foremost, it must be said that Off Season is not for the feint of heart; this is a visceral, brutal, unrestrained, exceedingly realistic novel that may sicken and disgust those unprepared for such extreme horror. The cover of my copy proclaims this "The Ultimate Horror Novel." I would not go that far in my assessment, but the suggestion doesn't fall very far from the mark. Ketchum held nothing back and pulled no punches in this, his first published novel. The story is rather simple but is far from simplistic. A group of six adults (three male, three female) retreat to a remote cabin in the woods of Maine for a week of relaxation. Unbeknownst to them, a family-group of utterly primitive, sadistic quasi-humans watch, wait, and eventually attack. Among this group are a number of wild children, and it is the children that have the most significant impact on the characters as well as the reader. The battle rages for some time, and many very bad things happen as the innocent victims do everything they can think of in order to survive. I found the conclusion to be spectacular; rest assured it is not the formulaic ending we see so often in novels of this sort.
I won't attempt to describe the horrible things the depraved attackers do--imagine the worst things you can think of, then imagine how much worse the unthinkable is, then imagine children taking part in it. This really is one of the goriest, most extreme horror novels I have read, but it rises far above any charges of shock value or gore for gore's sake.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Six adult friends go on holiday to a cabin out in the wilderness of Maine. Once there they sit about contemplating trivialities in their life that don't really matter ~ does my bum look big in this, I think I could be depressed, my career's not going to plan etc etc ~ but fortunately not for long, soon they will go through an evening of terrifying life or death survival situations.. Because outside lurk a cannibal tribe of inbred loonies, chomping at the bit, just dying to 'meat' them...

I'd never read any Jack Ketchum before this, but I'd heard good things, and so, intrigued by 'The Sawney Bean Clan' style premise, and it's heavily censored publishing history, I thought I'd give this one a go first.

Pretty good. I quite enjoyed it overall. The first 60 pages are duller than a train~spotters memoirs, but after that, once it kicked off, just under halfway into the book, the action was fairly relentless..
Now don't get wrong, it's by no means the goriest/nastiest book I've ever read, and whether it deserved to be so heavily cut (or indeed it's reputation as being so gruesome) on it's release back in 1980, probably depends on how easily shocked you are, and your views around censorship in general, but overall you can kinda see why it might have upset a few mainstream readers at the time..
Featuring as it does, some nice juicy chapters that include: dismemberment, brain eating, child decapitation, point blank lobotomies, castration, mutilation, stone age torture, organ removal, cannibal cooking tips and sexual assault, etc!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
When I read the reviews for off season, I thought to myself, "man, iv gotta check this novel out." It was written nearly 3 decades ago, and boasted such opinions as; "who's the scariest guy in America, probably Jack Ketchum." - Stephen King. For a long time this novel has been hailed as one of the most dark, gory, and startling books available. So i bought it and read it, and this is what I deduced.

The book has many good points. Ketchum crafts complex characters, with shifting emotions and opinions. He developes the characters together, giving each of them plenty of ink - this is so that there is no clear main protagonist, and when the killing starts you have no idea who is going to get it next - masterstroke!
His style of writing is easy to follow and races down the page, and is extremely graphic. He writes murder and mutilation in the same way and with the same intimacy you might find in a romance novel during a sex scene. Creepy, I know.

But still, I didn't find the book as disturbing as it was promised to be. I put this down to the age of the book. In 1980, I can imagine how this story must have made a lot of people feel. But in modern times we are quite desensitized to such graphic violence.

My biggest problem with Off Season though, was its profound lack of originality. This is a story about savages living in the hills, stalking and eating young holiday makers. I thought at first that this might be the book that spawned such similar storys. But when i checked the dates, I found that Off Season is out dated by movies such as Deliverance, and the original version of The Hills Have Eyes. I'm not saying that Off Season is a carbon copy of these stories, but it is damn close.
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