Welcome to Area X. An Edenic wilderness, an environmental disaster zone, a mystery for thirty years.
For thirty years, Area X, monitored by the secret agency known as the Southern Reach, has remained mysterious and remote behind its intangible border– an environmental disaster zone, though to all appearances an abundant wilderness. Eleven expeditions have been sent in to investigate; even for those that have made it out alive, there have been terrible consequences.
‘Annihilation’ is the story of the twelfth expedition and is told by its nameless biologist. Introverted but highly intelligent, the biologist brings her own secrets with her. She is accompanied by a psychologist, an anthropologist and a surveyor, their stated mission: to chart the land, take samples and expand the Southern Reach’s understanding of Area X.
But they soon find out that they are being manipulated by forces both strange and all too familiar. An unmapped tunnel is not as it first appears. An inexplicable moaning calls in the distance at dusk. And while each member of the expedition has surrendered to the authority of the Southern Reach, the power of Area X is far more difficult to resist.
This book was great! It may not be for everyone, seeing as no questions are answered and we don’t even find out the names of any of the characters. But still, I loved it.
This whole story is built on atmosphere and suspense. There are so many weird things going on, the tension in this fairly short book is just incredible. The writing was done really well, I could see it all in my head. But the way I could see it wasn’t really as a movie, but more like one of those horror games my fiancé likes. Those games you play on the edge of your seat, where you have to go round a corner but you don’t want to because there may be something there that is gonna give you a fright. And you know you’re gonna jump and you know you’re gonna curse, but curiosity wins it and you go on anyway.
Another thing I really liked in this book is the main character. This book reads as her journal of the expedition, so even though we never know her name, we do get to know her a bit. I found I could relate to her quite a bit. Not only because I am, just like her, a biologist, but also personality wise we are similar. I let my fiancé read a part where the main character tells about how she acts when going out with her husband and his friends, and my fiancé responded with: ‘Damn, she wrote about you?’
I do believe this story would work better if you read all three books in the series back to back… which is probably why they were all published in the same year (I believe, that’s what my ebook claimed at least). And I will continue the series… just not right away.