Written by: Brendan Deneen
Published by: Tor Books
Reviewed by: Naomi Downing
Tom and Jenny Decker have left their cheap Manhattan apartment to move into an affordable house in the suburbs. With their new home, bills, and an unexpected pregnancy things are piling up. When Tom finds the thing in the basement things start looking up, he lands a new job and is bringing in big bucks. But their dream home conceals more than one deadly secret. As Tom’s obsession with the basement grows Jenny realizes she has to protect her family.
This book started out really slow, it didn’t pull me in until the third chapter. I think you could cut down the first two chapters and make them into one shorter chapter. There was nothing that popped out and grabbed you in the beginning, most of the time I was reading was taken up by struggling through the beginning. There was no real progression for character or plot, to me, at the beginning of the book.
The third chapter is what hooked me, at this point they are in their new house and some action begins. But unfortunately the book didn’t keep me hooked.
The characters were well written to work together but didn’t really seem to work well alone. There isn’t really any motivation to the protagonist’s actions. While part of this is intentional, and creates a sense of claustrophobia and confusion, at certain moments it seems more careless and creates a wedge between the novel and the reader. Tom is a reactive character and when he does drive the action or make choices for himself, the reader is cut-off and left to watch rather than experience.
I feel as if the author tried to do too much. Some of the story’s strongest aspects like how the chrysalis effects Jenny, end up sliding through the cracks. The novel’s pacing does struggle, at times it is an edge of your seat story of the loss of control only to be dragged to a halt as the plot points begin to repeat themselves.
I didn’t find this book scary at all, it was more of a SciFi book then horror. I really struggled through this book, I wanted to give up at a few points but I stuck with it to the end. This book does have a lot of potential to be a great story but unfortunately it left a lot of unanswered questions that were important to actually know.