I received this advanced reader's copy from Gallery Books through NetGalley in exchange for review. I had heard great creepy things about Nick Cutter's debut novel The Troop, and decided to give his upcoming follow-up a try during this Halloween season. The book begins with a great premise, humanity is dying away after a worldwide outbreak of a disease called the 'Gets, which causes the victim to begin to forget, starting with little meaningless things, but eventually evolves to forgetting things far more serious and fatal. This concept is terrifying in itself and deserves its own novel. In an effort to find a cure, a team is sent into the deepest point on Earth, miles down into the Mariana Trench, and then even further, to the bottom of Challenger Deep. The story that follows is a mix between Sphere, Event Horizon, and The Shining. It's a total nosedive into insanity.
All of you Goodreaders are my friends now and all my friends should know that I have a fear of deep ocean and open water. So this book had me by the throat from the very beginning. I'm not ashamed to say that if I got sent on a mission to the bottom of the Pacific, I'd probably be the one to go totally bonkers. The book wastes no time getting to the goosebumps, ratcheting up the creepy tension as soon as the trip begins to the bottom of the sea. Nick Cutter is great at building suspense and atmosphere. But once down at the underwater facility, the plot goes ALL over the place. I never fully got a sense of what the threat really was. There were so many antagonizing ideas thrown into the story that it sort of became a mess; a kind of a reverse deus ex machina of perils and obstacles, thrown in to move the story along. What did work were the descriptions of the psychological breakdown of the characters. That was the stuff that really affected me. The style of writing told in slipped, short chapters, kept my eyes flying through the book, to the point where I felt that I might actually be going a little crazy myself by the time I got to the insane final chapters."Don't worry, it'll get even darker. You've never seen the kind of dark we're gonna encounter."