REVIEW SUMMARY: A “slow invasion” story that reads quickly, but moves slowly.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: A group of aliens stranded on Earth impact the small seaside town of Thatcham.
PROS: Interesting premise; quick-moving, to-the-point prose; reminds us that alien invasion stories don’t have to be stitched-together action sequences; wonderfully creepy final act.
CONS: Takes a while before the really good stuff happens, then it’s over; characters acting inconsistently or illogically.
BOTTOM LINE: A bit of a misfire from a talented writer.
When science fiction fans think of alien invasion, they tend think of the action-filled special effects spectacles shown in film. In literature, invasions are often meatier, usually offering a more personal look at the impact of our alien foes. The depiction is more complicated when the invasion is more subtle, like this one depicted by David Moody.
David Moody is the critically-acclaimed author of Hater, Dog Blood, Them and Us and the Autumn series. He lives in the UK.
We’re taught from early days that all stories must have a beginning, a middle and an end. Take my genre of choice – post-apocalyptic fiction. You have the beginning – the event – then the middle as our cast of characters inevitably have to fight to survive in what’s left of their world, but what about the end? Sure, there are countless stories which wrap things up with nihilistic ‘we’re all screwed’ finales, and even more with awful and lazy ‘oh, suddenly everything’s okay again’ endings, but I think there are more stories left to be told. What happens when the initial danger has faded and those who remain are left to pick up the pieces?
I’m talking about the post-post-apocalypse, and I think it’s fascinating.