In the second volume of the Southern Reach Trilogy, questions are answered, stakes are raised, and mysteries are deepened....
Following the disastrous 12th expedition chronicled in Annihilation, the second book of the Southern Reach trilogy introduces John Rodriguez, the new head of the government agency responsible for the safeguarding of Area X. His first day is spent grappling with the fall-out from the last expedition. Area X itself remains a mystery. But, as instructed by a higher authority known only as The Voice, the self-styled Control must battle to 'put his house in order'.
From a series of interrogations, a cache of hidden notes and hours of profoundly troubling video footage, the mysteries of Area X begin to reveal themselves - and what they expose pushes Control to confront disturbing truths about both himself and the agency he's promised to serve.
Undermined and under pressure to make sense of everything, Rodriguez retreats into his past in a labyrinthine search for answers. Yet the more he uncovers, the more he risks, for the secrets of the Southern Reach are more sinister than anyone could have known.
©2014 Jeff VanderMeer Creative, Inc. (P)2014 2014 by Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Praise for Annihilation:
"A teeming science fiction that draws on Conrad and Lovecraft alike... The writing itself has a clarity that makes the abundancy of the setting more powerful. Annihilation shows signs of being the novel that will allow VanderMeer to break through to a new and larger audience" (Sunday Telegraph)
"A lasting monument to the uncanny... you find yourself afraid to turn the page... We are less than 200 pages in to the Southern Reach Trilogy... and already home is a distant memory, and an unreliable one, too: for who's to say that home was not always X at heart?" (Simon Ings, Guardian)
"Annihilation owes much to the explorations of psychogeographical landscapes in early JG Ballard and also to the work of the old masters of weird fiction such as HP Lovecraft and William Hope Hodgson, with their love of nameless horrors haunting liminal realms. VanderMeer synthesises these influences to create a tale with a deliciously creepy atmosphere of dread" (Financial Times)
"Annihilation is a weird and wonderful novel. And the hardback edition is as beautiful as the prose between the covers.' Metro'A tautly told, self-contained story, informed and illuminated by the flawed and very human voice of its narrator" (Arc)
"Immersive, insightful and often deeply bloody creepy, this is a startlingly good novel. If the sequels live up to it, then the Southern Reach series will be a major work" (***** SFX Magazine)
"A tense and chilling psychological thriller about an unravelling expedition and the strangeness within us. A little Kubrick, a lot of Lovecraft, the novel builds with an unbearable tension and claustrophobic dread that lingers long afterwards. I loved it" (Lauren Beukes)
"Original and beautiful, maddening and magnificent" (Warren Ellis)
I enjoyed this. But far less so than the first book in the trilogy. The performance was great, and there were some great moments though.
There were some great plot reveals in this one, which really add to the first book. One of those reveals. Or one of the creepier moments, some of which were gut-wrenching.
He reads it very well. Adds emotion, and character, and is not monotonous like some other audiobook readers can be. Overall a great performance.
No. But nearly.
Without giving anything away, the story works on multiple levels -- if you've read the first book in the trilogy, seemingly matter-of-fact details contribute to a sense of rising panic and dread. Balki off of Perfect Strangers (and yeah! I loved that show as a kid!) was a genuinely excellent narrator, able to express some terrifying concepts with exactly the right level of panicked calm. Near perfect.
Appreciated very much the immersive nature of the writing. There is a dark futility to the main characters quest and you get drawn into it very early on. More a book about the experience perhaps than story but still very enjoyable.
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