Published by Bonnier Zaffre, June 2018
Source: review copy
A TV crew arrive at the Grand Canyon led by Nolan Moore, amateur archaeologist and host of The Anomaly Files. Following the trail of a decades-old conspiracy, the team seek proof of a cave within the canyon, hidden from public record and filled with ancient treasures.
At first, it seems that, once again, the crew will return to LA empty-handed. But then their luck turns. They find a cave and artefacts beyond their wildest imagination. But the team’s elation is short-lived as they become trapped within the cavern’s dark passages with little possibility of escape.
Then events take an even more terrifying turn.
For not all secrets are meant to be found . . .
Oh, this was a huge amount of fun. A film crew head off to the Grand Canyon to investigate a mysterious cavern found (and lost) decades earlier, reportedly filled with treasures galore.
Look, this was never going to end well, was it? A bunch of amateur explorers wandering around ancient dark caves? What could *possibly* go wrong?
Lots. Lots of things could go wrong. And boy, do they go wrong.
The Anomaly could easily be written off as yet another summer blockbuster thriller, the kind that Michael Crichton churned out back in the day. But it’s so gleefully done, with some great characters, snappy dialogue and a refreshing lack of people going ‘Oh, I’ll just wander off down this dark tunnel by myself armed only with a flashlight and an unhealthy disregard for horror tropes’.
(Yes, killer mermaid book. I’m looking at you here)
The Anomaly is then head and shoulders ahead of the competition. It zips along (I polished it off over the course of a day – which should tell you enough about how gripping the plot was!), the characters are ace, the dark tunnels sufficiently dark *and* scary, and it bounces along to an entirely satisfying conclusion. Someone said it was like the X-Files meets Indiana Jones, and they’d be entirely correct.
The Anomaly by Michael Rutger is published by Bonnier Zaffre.