I am a huge fan of the Hannibal Lecter novels, as I have an interest in the criminal psyche and forensic science. Beyond that, "Red Dragon" and "Silence of the Lambs" are very entertaining, well-written thrillers (and I even have a soft spot for the film series) I was not impressed with the beginning of Hannibal Rising, it just felt like an unpleasant slog where our only company is kept with disgusting war criminals and sadly abused children. I thought the book picked up considerably, however, when Hannibal moves in with Lady Murasaki. The relationship with his "new" family and the description of how he found calm in the Japanese culture was quite beautiful. But since this IS Hannibal Lecter's story we're reading about, we quickly get back into the horror. There are gruesome death scenes, though they take up very little room and those killed are about as awful people as you can find. (No spoilers) but what drives Hannibal to these crimes at a young age is at an understandable core, and that mixed with his young age gives the reader a confusing place of understanding and even sympathizing with a serial killer. You won't find the depth here that are in the other Lecter novels, but if you have an interest in the character it's a fast read with many memorable scenes. Now I'm ready to rent the movie and compare. :)
I just got this book today from another member, started it and I can't put it down. For me, it's very intriguing learning of the beginning of the monster who was Hannibal. It gives much more insight in my opinion.
The story of how Hannibal Lecter, became the manical killer he was. Great storyline kept me interested from the start. The movie followed book for the most part, enough differences though, to make reading the book worth while.
Good book to read, it gives a reason for Lecter's actions.
This book was a very quick read. I found it fascinating and very creepy.