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Off Season Mass Market Paperback – 1 Jun 2006

4.1 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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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: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 205,310 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Jack Ketchum, a four-time recipient of the Bram Stoker Award, is the author of many novels and works of short fiction. Several of his books have been adapted to film. Jack lives in New York City. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Daniel Jolley HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 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: 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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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: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is a pioneer to the genre and makes films like Wrong Turn seem mild in comparison. When three couples arrange to meet for a weekend at a leased house somewhere in the deep Maine woods, their terrifying ordeal is about to begin. Before the night is over an assault by the strange cave dwellers will exact a terrible price with a horrifying aftermath, one that nobody is likely ever to forget. After a slow start the book takes off at warp speed and you will be compelled to read every page thereafter. Jack Ketchum is such an amazing master of the macabre, there is nobody I can think who comes close.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
This is my first review ever on Amazon, though I have been buying books here for years. I bought this book because of the reviews, and I hope no one else makes that mistake. Because of the reviews I had read, I was very much looking forward to reading this book. Actually, I was pretty freaked out even before I got it. And of course I was massively disappointed. The violence is nothing compared to what is coming out in books and movies today. Like one of the other reviewers said, this book was possibly extreme when it was first released, but by today's standards it's absolutely dull. Yeah, it has a fair amount of gore, violence and sex, but I am convinced that the only reason it got censored back then is Ketchum's love of the word c**k, and there aren't many roosters around.

The idea is pretty good, especially if you like movies like The Hills Have Eyes, Wrong Turn and such (sorry, don't know many books with similar themes). But for me it just didn't work that well. There is little suspense and no surprise, and the cannibals aren't really that creepy. Stephen King is a bit of a liar, saying you won't sleep until Christmas if you read this on Thanksgiving. I'd say that if you read this on Thanksgiving, you'll sleep pretty much right away.

This book is exactly for the feint of heart, because horror fans wouldn't react at all.
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