Sunday, November 19, 2017

Swim, Anyone?

Mira Grant “Into the Drowning Deep” (Orbit, 2017)

Here’s the setup: A TV channel that focuses on “disputed phenomena” does a show on mermaids. To their regret and surprise, the mermaids are real.  And they kill everyone on board the ship.  Of course no one believes that’s what happened. Why would you? But some years later, the corporation sends out another ship (this one larger, and crucially untested in various ways) to try to study and document the phenomenon.  

Of course everything goes wrong!

If you have read the Newsflesh books, you know that Mira Grant is Seanan McGuire’s nom de horror. She likes to play with the horror tool box, but she just can’t resist digging into the science. If you enjoyed that about her zombie books, you will also dig it here.  It’s clear that she has spent some time with ocean sciences, as well as various biological sciences. And it’s great.

If you are someone who hasn’t read one of her books under one name or another, you should know that she knows how to put together a compelling story. I haven’t read one yet that doesn’t have a plot that keeps you turning the pages, and characters that you don’t want to cheer for (even though they have a really good chance of dying). 

My only complaint about Into the Drowning Deep is that the first half or so felt a bit more talky than I think her books usually are. There’s lots of exposition needed, but it just feels a bit more clumsy that I expect from her.

This was a very fun horror story, you won’t look at the deep sea the same way again.

Thanks to NetGalley and Orbit for a review copy!

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