Carcharodon megalodon. The largest and most fearsome predator to have ever existed on our planet. Rumours of its existence in our modern oceans have persisted for centuries. Now, in a new adventure, the rumours explode into brutal and terrifying reality in Fathomless, by Greig Beck.
Baranof Island, Gulf of Alaska, 1952. Jim Granger is searching for a place of legend. Known as Bad Water by the island's elders, it's reputed to be home to many dangerous creatures. Through a seam in a cliff face, Jim finds what he seeks. He also finds, too late, that the water demon he was warned about is horrifyingly real.
Today Cate Granger is following in her grandfather's footsteps. Along with a team of scientists and crew, she accidentally releases a creature from Earth's primordial past into today's oceans. The giant megalodon shark follows its instinct and a genetic memory of a home that existed millions of years ago along the Californian coast.
Nothing is safe on or below the water as the monster stakes its claim on the world's oceans. Now Cate and her team must do battle with a creature that has no rival, knows no fear, and regards humans as nothing more than prey.
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By Olive on 24-01-17
I usually like Beck's stories although the last couple of books have too many stupid female characters. I also generally like Mangan's narration because of his tone and occasional pronunciations that are more amusing than annoying. This book is different and it was a struggle to keep listening. The first time he said "mega loden" I thought about returning the book. I knew how to pronounce that when I was eight years old.
The scenarios were ridiculous. For example, after the trio tried to escape to the island and had only three fading lights, they kept all three on while they stood around and talked. Turn off two of them! They finally did, but geez...does no one think? The kidnapping of the Russian billionaire was not fully explained. Dozens of people die and this meg is supposed to remain a secret? Whatever.
A main problem here is that there is no perspective from the fish. Steve Alten's Meg books tell us how megs perceive prey, senses heartbeats, can function without sight. In this book, our heroes think they can out-paddle it by going slow, or out-swim it by being quiet (but still talking loudly in the water--go figure) or throwing around a bunch of debris to confuse it. I also did not care for how he had the characters decide that the fish was "evil" and how he portrayed the environmentalists. Some can be a bit too obsessive and naive, but these characters crossed the line into total idiocy. And we are to believe that the helicopter pilot managed to lure the meg several miles away from the sinking boat, then after the chopper was pulled into the water the pilot swam at least two miles back to the boat. In the dark, in the ocean, that would be incredible enough, but she managed to do it in what seemed to be about half an hour. I could not get a handle on time in this novel.
To be fair, the Sonya character was very good and Beck does have a great imagination. The best scene was with the poor floating whale, the helicopter, and the coast guard guy who tried to figure out what happened to it.
However, Beck's statement in the afterward that the warming seas have nothing to do with man-caused climate change was just too much.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful
By Daniel Delgado on 15-11-16
Good story, weak narration
I like this story, but I certainly don't love it. The writing and pace are very good but at times the interactions between characters seems forced, particularly with the dialogue. It doesn't happen too often, but enough to be noticeable. Also, a pet peeve of mine is seeing the same vocabulary repeated too often, and "Stygian" was used 5-7 times. Too redundant.
Sean Mangan's voice is pleasant enough, but he horribly butchers certain pronunciations. What's more, he mispronounces "megalodon," and the word is used somewhere near 100 times. Absolutely brutal to listen to! He reads it as meg-ah-LO-don, as opposed to MEG-a-la-don or the more common MEG-la-don. Even then, he sometimes changes it to meg-AL-o-don. A more common word, abyss, is
read as A-biss as opposed to uh-BISS. There were others too. Please look these things up, Sean. Also, his reading of sarcasm is bland, and sometimes down right chipper, and there are several other points where the dialogue was not intoned properly.
If I come across another book narrated by Mangan I will hesitate to buy it, though I think he deserves another shot. If I don't hear an improvement then he will go on the DO NOT LISTEN TO list, and I
Will certainly not be trying him out on another Beck novel. I would like to try another of his books with a different voice.
19 of 20 people found this review helpful