Wasp Box

Wasp BoxJason Ockert (BA, 1995)

Panhandler Books, 2015

When a soldier returning home to a small New York town inadvertently transports an invasive species of deadly parasitic wasps, he sets off a frightening chain of events that throws an entire community into an unpredictable crisis. The wasps grow in number to a few thousand in only a matter of days, permeating the wine country to which seventeen-year-old Hudson has traveled for the summer with his younger half-brother Speck.

As Hudson attempts to connect with his estranged, distant father who lives in the town, Speck discovers the soldier’s discarded journal, and it mesmerizes him with its bizarre, haunting tale—one that causes him to doubt the safety of his surroundings as the deadly wasps multiply.

Escalating in its psychological, emotional, and narrative intensity, Ockert’s gripping first novel examines the choices individuals make in the face of crisis, the limits of personal strength, and the value of family loyalty when the familiar world unravels.