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THE DEEP by NICK CUTTER
“It seemed sentient, watching like a snake coiled in placid contentment under warm desert rocks. Knowing, in the seething core of itself, that it need only to wait.”
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The Shining meets The Thing in a claustrophobic horror set at the bottom of the ocean.
I had read Nick Cutter's previous book, The Troop, and enjoyed it as a body-horror/creature-feature type deal, and was interested in what else he had to offer.
This book does not disappoint in regards to the phycological horror going on here. On a research station 8 miles down at the bottom of the ocean, a lot of gnarly things are going to happen. There are great monster moments, scary & thought provoking existential crises, and heart-wrenching flashbacks.
So why not a higher rating? 2 reasons.
1. The characters. The protagonist, Luke, is the only one I really gave a damn about. Which is good, but the fact that I just didn't care what happened to the other characters involved is not so good. I wanted to root for Luke, and it would have worked better if there was more going on with the supporting characters so as to lift him up, but instead I just wanted their ends to come quicker.
2. The set up of the book had no payoff. The reason they are at the bottom of the ocean was to find a cure for a horrible disease called The 'Gets'. The disease could have been a story in and of itself, and it does serve as the launching pad for the rest of the book, but its just so underplayed and then never utilized again it really felt like a waste. Especially with a certain revelation at the end.
Those 2 things were kind of disappointing, otherwise would have been a solid 4. But I really like Nick Cutter's prose, description, and imaginative monster creations that inhabit this story. Those elements are extremely strong.
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