“A sadistic maniac was developing a deadly virus by using children as guinea pigs.”
Vigilantes were one of the key themes of the muscular over the top world of seventies pulp fiction. And one of the biggest, meanest and weirdest of them was John Yard aka The Hunter.
Published in 1975, The Deadly Prey is one of four books I know of in The Hunter series, the other titles being Scavenger Kill, Track of the Beast and A Taste for Blood. All of them were released by New York pulp publisher, Leisure Books. You’ll find the covers to the other three books here on my Pinterest site.
Yard is a former African game hunter who has changed professions and, along with his side kick, Moses Ngala, now works as a gun for hire.
The subject of his attentions in The Deadly Prey is a mad scientist who is testing a lethal super virus on the inhabitants of an Appalachian hippy commune. Unfortunately for the scientists and his backers in the military industrial complex, one of the kids he kills happens to be the son of one of Yard’s former hunting partners and, of course, a former Green Beret.
Whatever, the back cover blurb does much more justice to the story than I ever could.
In Appalachia, a twisted scientist was developing a super deadly virus that could be used for bacteriological warfare. Before long, he began using human beings as guinea pigs – and one them, a young man from a nearby commune, died a hideously painful death as a result.
His death would have gone unnoticed if his father had not asked Moses Ngala to find out what became of his son. Moses found the boy in a shallow grave, and also found that there was no legal recourse against the scientist. That was when he called in John Yard – The Hunter – and together they set out to claim a bloodcurdling vengeance against a sadistic maniac.”