Goodreads review • Annihilation

Annihilation (Southern Reach, #1)Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Some recommended it, others said I had to avoid it. Whatever the case, they all mentioned a strange tone of voice to the writing. As I started reading it, it wasn’t strange; it was incredibly familiar. Here I was reading a contemporary Lovecraft story.

The comparison runs a few layers deeper than I initially expected, but in completing it I didn’t really find a conclusive ending to what I’m used to in Lovecraft’s work. Rather, it seems to be negation. The entire work seems to dodge whatever it is and leaves you with a cliffhanger, that feels hastily cobbled together. As if it were the script for a tv-series turned into a book at the same last-minute moment it got greenlit for two seasons instead of one.

It’s a bit of a shame, on its own without the cliffhanger, it could maybe have served as a proper hommage to Lovecraft. Now it seems to betray what it is for what it wants to be. As such, I’m not even sure I want to read the rest of the trilogy. Maybe I should just forget about the last pages and treat it as a stand-alone hommage. We’ll see.

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