Here be monsters Release Date: OUT NOW! 352 pages | Paperback Author: Daryl Gregory Publisher: Titan Books Sea monsters have been a source of fear and fascination for centuries, and it is these ancient tales of leviathans that invest Daryl Gregory’s sixth novel with a dank sense of primal dread.
Shortly after their arrival in the fog- bound fishing port of Dunnsmouth ( an unsettlingly odd place that might be twinned with Midwich), teenager Harrison Harrison’s marine biologist mother goes missing in a boating accident eerily similar to the one that claimed his father – and his own leg – more than a decade earlier.
Unfortunately for our hero, who harbours a clammy terror of the sea, the answers to the mystery lie several fathoms below – Gregory cannily exploiting the sense that, while science fiction often raises its face to the stars, there’s nothing quite so alien as what lies beneath our own oceans.
Clearly inspired by Coleridge’s “The Rime Of The Ancient Mariner” – from which it quotes heavily – Harrison Squared tempers its muculent Lovecraftian weirdness with a dry wit, courtesy of its whip- smart protagonist, and occasional pop- cultural asides to remind us that, however strange this world might be, it’s still the same one Taylor Swift lives in.
It’s a shame so much time is devoted to the town’s high school – those submissive, glassy- eyed kids feel a bit old hat – but, that aside, this is a vividly told mystery story that, like Dunnsmouth itself, reveals hidden depths. Paul Kirkley Want more? You can catch up with Harrison 20 years later in Daryl Gregory’s We Are All Completely Fine, published last year.