I Wanna Be Literated #232

I Wanna Be Literated #232

Wednesday, 09 December 2020

(The Southern Reach Trilogy Book #1)
by Jeff Vandermeer

Remember that movie Annihilation? No? Well, no one does. It was remarkably unremarkable, right? But there were some good ideas there. And, I’m a sucker for sci-fi. I found this book at a free book exchange and seeing how slender it was, thought I’d pick it up. I don’t read much fiction, and I’d heard good things about the book. Why not?

After having read Annihilation, I have to ask, what the hell happened to the movie?

At first I kept wondering how I had missed so many of the cool elements in Vandermeer’s book in the movie. Maybe I was crazy for not liking the movie? After a little bit of research online I realized that what has happened is that the movie was completely botched. It’s basically Annihilation only in name and concept. But the thing that makes Annihilation the book so great is that it’s a concept with a lot pretty spooky details. Most of which were ignored in the movie in order to make it more of an action flick. And, spoiler alert, having the ending be “aliens” is a dumb cop out.

But Annihilation the book is what we’re here to talk about. It’s short, yes, but a very suspenseful, disturbing, and gripping story. There is a mysterious zone called Area X, and a female team of specialists is sent in to investigate. Investigate what? And why? That remains to be determined. Whatever the case, Area X does some strange things to people. The whole story is rooted in an eerie concept that just barely unravels but keeps things interesting every step of the way. Our main character of the biologist is a full-on pragmatist and almost video-game-hero like persona walking us through this strange world. And even though some of the fantastical aspects are a little hard to portray with merely words, a little imagination helps bring them to life (in some form) in your head. Anyway, it doesn’t matter. You know Annihilation is a good book, because you’ll be sneaking off to get a few more pages in here or there.

And chances are you’ll like this so much that you’ll move right onto the sequel. I know I have. I want to know more. I want to know how – or if – it ends.

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