2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 14 April 2014
We start off with a death, as good horror novels often do. Johnny Horowitz is an alcoholic paparazzi, and he'll do anything for a story, and while driving by the deserted North Beach on Seagull Island, when he feels it calling to him, and Johnny has made his living by listening to his inner voices. So, he goes down to see what it is about the North Beach that is so special. And after looking around, he finds bones, human bones, and then he really smells a story when he goes to the local law, and he finds that they have absolutely no stomach for any investigation into the matter. At all.
A good story means good money, and Johnny needs money, so he stakes out the beach to see what he can see. And what he sees is a sea monster attack, and then he realizes that he is seeing even more than that, that there is even something more special to the beach than the occasional monster. Something that might have to do with time slippages.
Enter Matt Packard, the local historian who knows more about the beach than nearly anybody else, and since he is nearing the end of his life, he doesn't give a damn anymore about screwing up Seagull Island's tourist trade, or whose feathers get ruffled. Just the type of person Johnny needs, and wants on his side.
Johnny also finds out that these incidents and attacks only take place during periods of great atmospheric disturbances, like hurricanes, like hurricane Amelia, like hurricane Amelia which is barreling on down on Seagull Island.
With the novella "Leviathan", Tim Curran delivers another slab of neo-pulp "B" movie action goodness that starts out with Curran developing his situations, locals, and characters, Johnny is a prime screw-up, and he's the type of person who gets people killed. Curran will then have the story move inexorably towards its exciting, and nearly apocalyptic ending, which happens during Amelia's worst, as the past come back to bite Johnny, Matt, and the whole island, in more ways than one.
This is a novella that could have appeared, if only slightly revised, in many of the old thirties or forties pulp adventure or fantasy magazines, before sf started taking itself way too seriously. What a great movie this novella would make, especially the ending, which is one of the best and most exciting that I've read in fiction in some time, and which oddly enough, reminded me of the ending of the mystery thriller Skiptrace by Antoinette Azolakov with its equally exciting hurricane, although in a different way, ending.
And once again, Severed Press refuses to list or acknowledge who does the cover artwork for their books; I'd like to know just who did the artwork for this novella, it's pretty danged good.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 June 2014
Pretty nice idea, well written, but ending is a little bit of a let down... doesn't really end with a bang (as you would expect with the build up) but kind of fades away and you feel as though the end action happens off page
on 16 January 2015
Really enjoyed this. The action and tension is right from the very beginning and doesn't let up. Very descriptive, could almost hear and smell the sea. A bit gory in places but not gratuitously so, just enough to make it clear the horror of what is happening, unlike some that pile the gore so much it becomes tedious to read. On the strength of this I might try another Tim Curran novel.