Sunday 10 June 2018

Book Review: The Chrysalis by Brendan Deneen

Title: The Chrysalis
Brendan Deneen

Tor Books

Publication Date: 4 September 2018
eBook - PDF
ARC via NetGalley


Barely employed millennials Tom and Jenny Decker have to grow up fast when they lose their cheap Manhattan apartment. Leaving “the city” is hard, but the blow is softened when they stumble upon a surprisingly affordable house in the suburbs.

For Tom, the bills, the mortgage, and Jenny's unexpected pregnancy add up to terror. He's not ready for this kind of responsibility. Then he finds the thing in the basement. It makes him feel like a winner even as it scrambles his senses. A new job soon has him raking in the big bucks—enough that Jenny can start making her entrepreneurial dreams come true.

The Deckers' dream home conceals more than one deadly secret. As Tom's obsession with the basement grows, Jenny realizes that to save her family, she must expose everything. Before it destroys them all.

No one ever really wants to grow up…but sometimes behaving like an adult is the only way to survive.

The Chrysalis was an entertaining read. I didn't find it scary per se (perhaps because I don't have a basement), but it was gripping, and with each page turn, I wanted to find out what would happen next. There was a filmic quality to the piece, which makes sense as I know discussions about a film were underway at the time of writing, and I can certainly see this working well as a horror movie. For a horror book, I felt it was a little lacking in the scares, being more creepy than outright horrific, but the characters were well drawn and the pacing generally good. I think the story might excel more on the screen, but it was still a decent read and worth a couple of hours of your time. 3.5 stars from me.

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