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Despite bearing perhaps the most obvious and awful photoshop I've ever seen on its' jacket, The Conqueror Worms is pretty damn fantastic. I just picked it up today, having thoroughly enjoyed Brian Keene's The Rising and its' sequel City of the Dead. It's rare that I find a book that I simply cannot put down, but that was the case with both of those. The last paragraph of City was so brilliant and fitting for such an epic story, it damn near killed me. I must've read that paragraph ten times.


The Conquerer Worms. It's been raining for over a month. A massive storm has caused tidal waves and flooding all over the world. Islands and pretty much every coastline around the world have become submerged, with death tolls in the millions. Teddy Garnett, an eighty-something year old man in Rhode Island is the last man alive in his town, holed up in his house for most of the duration of the storm. Then one day the worms appear. Giant vicious worms have come up from the ground to do something. I haven't gotten to the part that explains the worms' motivation. I'm sure it's pretty much just to eat people and destroy everything. Teddy meets some other survivors and some other stuff happens. I haven't gotten to that part either.

I know it sounds like a 50's B-movie, but Brian Keene has such a talent at convncingly conveying chaos(say that a hundred times fast), and writes plot and characters so damn well, it's tough to put down. From what I've read, Brian Keene doesn't get all that deep or philosophical, but his books aren't just fluff. They're well plotted, well told stories, and it's as simple as that. I know some might think that horror novels are crap and a dime-a-dozen, but Brian Keene stands far far above most of the other contemporary horror fiction authors I've read. He just needs to beg Dorchester Publishing for a new art director.


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