Into the Drowning Deep

July 31, 2018 at 6:00 pm (Reads) (, )

deepInto the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant

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I’ve read a bunch of novellas by Grant/McGuire so far, but Into the Drowning Deep is the first novel of hers I’ve read. I had been looking forward to it, since I’ve liked her style, but felt like the novellas moved too quickly, or didn’t give enough attention to the character development. I chalked it up to the brevity of the format, and wanted to see what she could do with a full-length novel. Rolling in the Deep helped me move this up my list to read.

In a way, I was right, in that the novel starts out being almost exactly like the novella, just with more character and plot development. It’s definitely the same story (scientists and television producers go out to the Mariana Trench to discover if mermaids are real), but it uses different characters and goes into more depth with the cast and their trials. The good news is Grant’s characterization skills are top notch, as she draws out a cast of different characters who are all distinct and likeable (or unlikeable, as the case may be).

The thing is, there’s something about Grant’s style overall that feels a little flighty, giving the suggestion that we shouldn’t take the events too seriously. We should, because this is a straight-up horror novel set at sea, and it’s not that Grant’s style is irreverent, but it has a kind of casual feel that’s at odds with the tone of the story. It’s a characteristic I’m finding more often in more recent genre fiction, and I’m not quite used to it.

Aside from that, though, Into the Drowning Deep is a solid novel, in that it’s easily accessible, palpably tense, and populated with characters whose desires drive the plot. It doesn’t quite compare with the brilliance of her Wayward Children series, but it does show off Grant’s skills as a writer. One of these days I’ll commit to some of her longer series.

Started: June 24, 1028
Finished: July 15, 2018

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