As he points out in his brief afterword, David Moody’s Hater Trilogy isn’t exactly something that you read for enjoyment – but they are books that grab you by the scruff of the neck and drag you into their post-apocalyptic scenario. Once again there are echoes of other such works – perhaps inevitably now, there are elements that can be seen in the TV version of The Walking Dead – and in this final book, Moody tackles some of the same themes that Terry Nation and Adrian Hodges both examined in their versions of Survivors, notably how some people rise to the top in such situations, and what they’ll do to maintain their grip on what’s left of society.
Towards the end, as the protagonist is facing the end of everything on both a global and personal scale, Moody also looks at how the two sides consciously or subconsciously force the battle to continue. Is there really that much difference between Hater and Unchanged, when the only way that either can survive now is to destroy the other?
Unusually for this sequence of tales, there’s even a glimmer of hope from time to time, amid the cannibalism, mutilation, foul experimentation and general depiction of all that’s worst about humanity – and perhaps that’s what stands out most about this final book, as Danny McCoyne maintains his own humanity right to the end.
Verdict: A triumphant and very satisfying end to a great horror trilogy. 8/10