Cashill novel nails the future – again!

A good read that gets progressively better as it goes, The Hunt is a traditional thriller but also a reflection of the battle of the two worldviews we see playing out in the political landscape and current events of our own culture.

The Hunt is a story about a pair of high school–age brothers from Kansas who, along with their father, a former Special Forces operative, are on their way to hunt elk in the mountains of Colorado.  Upon their arrival, they end up clashing with a pair of fatherless young brothers from the Northeast, radical anarchists Moom and Pel Adams, who have teamed up with Chechen terrorists to shoot down the president's plane during his arrival at an upcoming G-8 summit.

When Cashill and McMullen (full disclosure, McMullen is a friend) started talking about writing The Hunt a few years back, they anticipated that radical leftists like these characters would one day tire of street theater and move to direct action.  If anything, they underestimated the swiftness and scale of that transition.

Cashill's first novel, 2006: The Chautauqua Rising, also proved prescient.  Published in 2000, it anticipated a nonviolent grassroots uprising much like the Tea Party movement.  Stranger still, what triggered the "rising" was the mysterious death of Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia.

Today, as we see the brutal leftism of the leadership of one of our two major political parties subsuming traditional liberalism, this book offers a window into the mindset and methods such leftist radicals embrace and utilize.  Against the beautiful but dangerous backdrop of the Rocky Mountains, the brutality of the battle is starkly illuminated, and here there is no high-minded, soaring political disguise its ugliness.

As one 19th-century poet, José Martí, noted, "mankind is composed of two sorts of men — those who love and create, and those who hate and destroy."  Clearly, the second of those is in the ascendant right now.  The following describes the mindset of one of the radical brothers:

In the past he had protested on behalf of some environmental cause or another, but the cause itself was always secondary to the protest.  His goal was to stir [things] up and break stuff.  Revolution followed disorder.  He wanted to be remembered as the guy who brought the whole show down.

Such grim, heartless thinking is behind much of what somehow passes today as a recipe for a "new and better world," reflected not only in these fictional characters and events, but in the words and actions we see on the nightly news — and no longer emanating solely from fringe elements, but front and center in the rhetoric of many of our national political leaders.

The two brothers from Kansas, on the other hand — under the tutelage of both their dad and their circumstances — in the face of mortal danger are forced to move beyond passive self-indulgence and emotional detachment and to rise quickly to the occasion.  To survive the circumstances in which they find themselves, they have to call upon the strengths and virtues learned from their father.  The Adams brothers, by contrast, have had no father to learn from.

Hopefully, enough of our national character will be similarly revived in the face of our own only slightly less apparent crisis in the weeks and months to come.  Those who would seek to destroy us are never far away, and it is equally imperative that we too rise to the occasion in our own personal spheres.

And, again, a good and entertaining story to boot.