Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant

Grant_IntoDrowningDeep-HCTitle: Into the Drowning Deep
Series: Rolling in the Deep #1
Stand-alone: Yes
Author(s): Mira Grant
Publisher: Orbit
Format: ARC
Release Date: November 14th 2017
Pages: 512
Genre(s): Horror, Science-Fiction, Fantasy
ISBN13: 9780316379403


Reminiscent of Alien and Jurassic Park, Into the Drowning Deep is Mira Grant’s exploration of mermaids in their most natural and wicked form. Author of Feed and Parasite, she is also known for Rosemary and Rue and Every Heart a Doorway, under the name of Seanan McGuire. While I haven’t yet had the pleasure to read all her well-praised series, this new book part of the Rolling in the Deep series has definitely sealed the deal and proved Mira Grant’s ability to make horror stories as thrilling as they can ever be.

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Be warned that most of this story takes place out in the middle of the ocean with no land to be seen. For someone like me who barely ever ventures those territories in real life and who can’t swim even if his life depended on it, this story does wonders in torturing my soul and scarring me from ever trying out deep sea exploration or even simple cruises out in the uncharted oceans.

The story takes place seven years after a tragedy struck the Atargatis that was sent on a voyage to film a mockumentary. With rare footage showing unbelievable images bringing to life an ancient sea creature that was believed to be only a myth, a second trip was finally organized in order to uncover the truth.

With a crew filled with scientists and players with different agendas, Mira Grant offers us an exhaustive look at the discovery of mermaids. Filled with enough science to make your brain hurt, the story infuses a nifty dose of action, suspense and horror to keep readers immersed in this adventure and craving for more.

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There are a lot of characters in this voyage, but most of the time the author delivers their point of view in groups of two, making it a lot easier for readers to follow the different relationships and subplots. It would be a tad bit hard to point a finger at the protagonist for this story as the author does a nice job in balancing everyone’s perspective.

However, Victoria Stewart can still be seen as the main character who’s purpose to embark on this trip was a lot more personal than any of the other individuals since her sister was among the crew that was on the Atargatis. Her deep desire to uncover the truth regarding her sister’s death pushes her to put her own life at risk and embark on this quest, but her expertise as a marine biologist also plays a role in this hunt for answers.

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Victoria Stewart isn’t however the only one with a scientific background. At least 90% of the people on that ship have a certain competence in the various fields within the world of science, whether it would be in underwater acoustics or micro-bacteria organisms. There’s a lot of big words thrown in there that help make sense of everything, especially to try and justify the possibility of mermaids.

See, this can be a bit annoying for readers who don’t want to be bombarded with science while reading. While I felt I was sometimes being drowned in that science, I also found it fun to read as it helped create realism to the whole story. Into the Drowning Deep shouldn’t be seen as a pure horror story, but rather science fiction with a touch of horror.

In fact, I didn’t see it much as horror in its rawest form too, but rather a thriller with something potentially deadly ready to do nasty things to anyone who ventures to deep. This could however be just me since I have yet to read a real horror story that had me shaking in my boots, damned me with nightmares or killed my appetite.

intothedrowningdeepworldbuild

Mira Grant’s writing proves to be very addictive in this story. While it alternates between info-dumping and action sequences, it still does an excellent job in delivering it all with an excellent prose. The moment you crack open the book, you’ll recognize in her writing style a very aqua-centric and science-y vocabulary and expressions that make the story just that much more immersive.

The plot can also easily be categorized as urban fantasy as it incorporates mermaids in a very modern world set in 2022. Thanks to Mira Grant’s ability to make anything she desires realistic and believable, the possibility of mermaids in this future seems like nothing far-fetched. The scientific explanations pitched at us only make it that much more interesting and could easily fool anyone into believing it.

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The science integrated within a story is always something that worries people. It’s not even just about being able to understand it, but to also want any of it in the story they read. Mira Grant does throw in a hefty amount of science in this story and it often feels almost inevitable. While you can decide to be gullible and believe everything you read, I tend to distinguish science in fiction into two categories: science that is completely accurate and science that is able to provoke a suspension of disbelief.

If an author could do one or other, I consider that a win. Since I have no real knowledge on all this marine science stuff, there was no way I was going to call out the author for making up lies. However, everything I read was definitely able to create that suspension of disbelief and everything I read definitely seemed plausible to me; I like to believe I’m pretty rational too. That’s a win in my books.

The author tackles a bunch of themes within this thrilling story. Often you’ll find yourself reflecting on the purpose of science and progress, while at other times you’ll see animal cruelty being explored in a very sentimental way. There’s even a whole discourse on sign language, cold-blooded revenge and even an interesting reflection on career advancement. Let’s just say that the author covered a lot of subjects and delivered a wonderful action-packed science fiction story with a drop of fantasy and horror. Okay. Maybe a lot of drops of horror. Like… A thousand gallons of red sticky drops of horror. 

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Thank you to Hachette Book Group Canada for sending me a copy for review!


You can order your own copy now!

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Amazon (USA) – Amazon (Canada)Chapters IndigoBook Depository

MY OVERALL RATING: ★★★★☆

Have you read it yet? Do you plan to? What do you think about Into the Drowning Deep?

Share your thoughts with me!

Till next time,

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62 thoughts on “Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant

  1. raistlin0903 says:

    Well, this is a book that I have immediately added to my to read list. You already had me at reminiscent of Alien and Jurrasic Park, two of my favorite movies. Thank you very much for sharing this. Great review ! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Rebecca says:

    Oh, man – Mira Grant and mermaids? Sold. I’m not really big on mermaids but the fact that Mire Grant is taking it on – I have to check this out. I loved her Feed series so much. SHe is an excellent writer. Thanks for the heads up!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. By Hook Or By Book ~ Book Reviews, News, & Other Stuff says:

    “A thousand gallons of red sticky drops of horror.” That just about sums it up. Awesome review Lashaan! I thought this a little slow to start with all the characters being introduced, but otherwise I absolutely loved it. Sometimes I wonder about myself.🤭BTW, I think there’s going to be at least one more book of bloody mayhem as this is listed on GR and Amazon as Bk. 1.😊

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Inge | The Belgian Reviewer says:

    Chilling review! I didn’t know mermaids could take on such a wicked form. In my head they’re all so like Ariel, it feels kind of wrong to me :-). I do like that you can learn something new from this novel and that the author includes so many topics.. some I’d find interesting, like sign language, other I’d rather skip (animal cruelty, no thank you).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Thank you, Inge!! I actually heard about the mythology behind mermaids and… you’d be surprised of their background story. It’s way more than just Ariel hahahah It definitely has a bunch of well-integrated themes throughout the story, some are much more prominent than others though (animal cruelty is just a small piece of the whole game). I’d be curious to see how Inge the mystery thriller and fluffy story reader would do with this book. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  5. anniesbooksweb says:

    Still remember the first time Trang first featured the gifs like that in Top Spring Books, now it’s everywhere 💕 ! Trang’s presence on this blog is out of this world! 😂 Happy to see she set that post format for your reviews now 💓

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Beth (Reading Every Night) says:

    Great review for this book Lashaan, and I’m glad to see you enjoyed Into the Drowning Deep as well. I thought I recognized the name Mira Grant but I had no idea she wrote under Seanan McGuire as well. Her Every Heart a Doorway series is a favourite of mine so that alone is enough to make me want to add this to my to-read list. 🙂
    When it comes to books with plenty of science it really depends on the story whether I feel overwhelmed or not. Guess I’ll have to read Into the Drowning Deep myself and see whether I feel too bombarded or not, hopefully it will be the latter.
    Again great review! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Thank you Beth! You’re the first one to even mention Seanan McGuire! I thought more people would mention her famous series and be surprised that it’s the same author hahah Her Every Heart a Doorway has definitely become a book I’ll need to try out much sooner than I thought after seeing how well she can write now! 😀 Hope you do get the chance to read this someday. Expect a nice amount of blood in this thrilling cruise for mermaids. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Thanks Raven!! Hope you do enjoy this when you get the chance. The science was a little bit everywhere if you ask me, but if you don’t mind it and are ready to acknowledge it and try to understand its purpose, you’ll find this story to be quite fun! 🙂

      Like

  7. Sarah says:

    I already had this on my TBR, but even if I hadn’t I would have added it as soon as I saw the words “Jurassic Park.” This sounds like an awesome read, and I’m really looking forward to it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      It is an exhilariting read. It did remind of Jurassic Park for all the exploration and science to it, but if there’s one Spielberg movie I should have mentioned, it’s Jaws. This book screams Jaws hahah Hope you enjoy it when you get the chance, Sarah. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  8. LizScanlon says:

    Niiiice! This sounds really cool because I am not a fan of Ariel type mermaids, but I might be in what this book has to offer! 🙂

    Have you heard about the mermaid controversy in the States? I think it’s an old one, but anyway, some kind of ‘body’ was found washed up on a beach and bam, we got a documentary how it’s a mermaid… one of the biggest controversies out there 😀

    Top notch review, as always, Lashaan! You make the book sound reallllyy good! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Books, Vertigo and Tea says:

    Oh I think the sea settings can be very terrifying. There are elements of the unknown and isolation that really play well together. This sounds right up my alley, but it also seem to have an abundance happening in terms of characters and science. Is it the type of book you can label as easily digestible in small pieces? I ask because of late my eyes do not allow me to read for long stretches. Sometimes when there is too much happening I find myself having to reread if I have to put it down too often? I don’t mind a lot of science if theauthor doesn;t overwhelm you 😉 Your review has me thinking I should just go for it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      I couldn’t have said it better. The unknown and the isolation are very present throughout the story. There are even moments where the author really plays on those in a dramatic way and succeed in increasing your heart rate or making it all feel so suffocating! 😛 I am myself a fairly slow reader, compared to everyone else out here, so I already consider my “type” of reading as a “digest in small pieces” hahahah I understand what you mean and I think you can easily read this in that fashion. I didn’t feel like the science was impossible to follow, or even something that you HAD TO remember throughout the story too. It’s definitely a fun read that has that one mythical sea creature that we simply can’t hate or not want to hear more from! 😉 I do hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did when you get the chance to read it, Danielle!!! Thank you so much for reading!!! I reeeaaaallly appreciate it!! Take care. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Dani @ Perspective of a Writer says:

    MERMAIDS!! Hahahaa, I actually KNOW THIS AUTHOR!! I’m super excited you read this Lashaan! I actually didn’t think about it until you mentioned Another Heart A Doorway and then it clicked… How TOTALLY FASCINATING that she’s taken her work in an entirely different direction (horror) while still maintaining the urban fantasy feel. Also how interesting all the info dumping of science… Still I’ve always found her fae books to be believable for being paranormal. She’s super good at that as well as the paranormal world building and I’ve appreciated ALL of her characters in the fae series… She is a ho-hum plotter to me (talk to someone, then talk to another, a little action, then off to another person, then circle back to the first person until the villain acts so that the MC can act) which is why I’ve let go of reading more of her fae series… but this is one to try certainly! Sometimes that circle plotting is because the author has become bored with their world! 😉 Great review Lashaan… Okay MORE VALIDATION… LOVE the gifs!! I have not tried to make those… and now I’m super heart eyes at them… that mermaid rocks!! I kept scrolling just to see the mermaid again #bloggerjokesornot

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Pretty cool to find out an author you’ve known for some of their books you’ve read also has a pseudonym under which they write other stories huh? 😀 I was also surprised to see she was Seanan McGuire, even if I haven’t read Another Heart a Doorway yet hahahah I think she perfects the art of making anything mystical believable. All the science is pardonable then. That’s a pretty interesting pattern you’ve recognized in her style. There’s actually a structure in the way everything develops in Into the Drowning Deep too, but I find that it works fine for a horror story. Love your thoughts on it all though; no one out here would have ever been able to sum it up like that!! 😀 Thanks for the validation, I appreciate it. It takes forever to make these too!!! I envy those who can draw them from scratch (using pads and all), they’re definitely amazing!! The domain of graphic design alone is fascinating, and there’s so much you can learn alone (with the help of the Internet/Youtube). Time is however limited, so I might have to cut down on all that and invest more time on the review itself. Thanks again for your wonderful feedback, Dani!!! 🙂

      Like

  11. theorangutanlibrarian says:

    This sounds so cool!! Horror and mermaids mixed together- yes please! Wow!! hehe I mean, not that I fancy being scared off “ever trying out deep sea exploration or even simple cruises out in the uncharted oceans” (great line) but this just sounds so good. Even with the info dumping, I’m glad the prose was able to stand up anyway. Fantastic review! And love your aesthetics for this review!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      I know!! It’s actually a beautiful mix. As if sharks and piranhas weren’t enough, we get mermaids now! It was a fun ride though, and I’m glad the author knew how to make it fun. Thank you so much for your kind words!! And for the feedback on the aesthetics! 😀

      Like

  12. Sophie @ Blame Chocolate says:

    Oh a mermaid story!! I love mermaids but don’t usually find any that really do it for me? Too bad this is horror, though, I don’t think I’ll be able to read it xD
    I’m sorry to hear this tortured your sea-repellent soul hahaha I don’t care much for the ocean either, and while I do know how to swim, I don’t venture past a shallow, see-through pool. Because monsters lurking underneath. Or something. (Maybe it really isn’t a good idea to read this book…)
    I like that this has two POVs as I hate being kept in the dark with the characters or having access to only one side of the story (usually). I also like that it’s so sciencey and well-researched (if fictional, but you need real facts to twist around, right?), which only makes the whole thing even more plausible and scary, even if it can get a big overwhelming at times.
    I haven’t read anything by Mira Grant yet so I’m excited to try anything new ^^
    Except… “Okay. Maybe a lot of drops of horror. Like… A thousand gallons of red sticky drops of horror. ” LASHAAN YOU’RE KILLING ME HERE T_T
    Anyway, awesome review, as always, and I love your graphics soooo much! I swear, you never fail to make me want to read something new and even out of my comfort zone 🙂 So thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Hahaah I loved the idea of mermaids and horror! Somehow it seemed like a mix from heaven. Or hell, actually. I’ve heard too many things about the sea, especially when you go a bit further from the shore. I mean… There are weird creatures that they discover every day to this day! As if the common ones that are already crazy dangerous (eels, sharks, jellyfishes, etc.) weren’t enough!!! Put this man who can’t swim above it all, I’ll probably quiver in my boots for a good year!!! 😀
      Yep, there’s plenty of POVs and it just makes it much more fun to read as they all have different motives and act quite differently under these… special circumstances! Mira Grant owns science in this book, and probably in all of them from what I’ve heard. She uses it so well that anything she writes about sound hella plausible! So, in all honesty, the sciency parts are far from being a bad thing in this case. It’ll just drive some people nuts if they hate science overall hahah
      You should try her books under her pseudonym Seanan McGuire. They’re short, they’re YA and they’re loved by a lot of readers! It’s the Wayward Children series (the third book will even come out soon). Maybe you’ll love that series. I haven’t tried it out yet, but I definitely hope to do that some day! 😀
      Thank you for all your kind words, Sophie. I appreciate the time you’ve taken to read this and to share your thoughts. It’s always a pleasure to hear what you think about everything and anything. 😉

      Like

      • Sophie @ Blame Chocolate says:

        Hahaha same here! I just can’t imagine going into the sea when there’s so much stuff lurking there… It creeps me out xD
        Oh I love science for the most part, so I’m sure I wouldn’t mind that about the book! Plus, can’t go wrong with really well-done and detailed writing.
        Ah I’ll definitely give that one a go, then! I’ll be honest, I only knew about her Parasite series and the little that I read about it left my stomach a bit queasy hahaha
        You’re very welcome! I love reading all your posts so it’s no trouble at all ^_^ And I always have tons of opinions to share 😛 xD

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Karina Pinella says:

    Over 500 pages? You’re killing me. At the pace I’m reading right now with three books waiting and another one half read (reading two books at the same time can be tricky), I won’t have any time to write! This sounds like a book I’d like to read but . . . It has to wait its turn.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      I hear ya. I’m juggling multiple books at a time, and sometimes end up focusing on one all of a sudden. Reading multiple books is not the most ideal thing to do for me, but sometimes I just got to if I ever want to enjoy more books with my slow reading speed. Glad to hear your interest in this one. It’s quite fun. It’ll feel like you were watching a fun horror movie. 😀 Hope you get to read some day. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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