Saturday, October 9, 2010
Book Review: ALIENS: No Exit by Brian Evenson
Aliens: No Exit by Brian Evenson
Brian Evenson is currently one of my favorite writers. Dark horse has been doing a good job getting some pretty high class acts to write Aliens and Predator novels over the last few years. John Shirley who is my favorite author wrote excellent books in both universes, Jeff Vandameer a Predator novel and now Brian Evenson, the respected international horror guild award winner author and head of the creative writing program at Brown university. I was very interested to see what the department head at an ivy league school did with the Aliens universe.
I loved this novel, Alien tie in or not the first chapter was powerful, a scary powerful suspense piece heightened by our knowledge and deep understanding of the Alien-verse. Evenson has skills to bring the chills and seems to really enjoy playing in this setting. While mid-chapter flashbacks are often discouraged Evenson seemlessly weaves in the main character's back story and uses it greatly enhance the suspense.
The story is about a Detective Anders Kramm who specializes in Xenomorph encounters. After his family is killed he has himself put in hypersleep, with orders to only be woken if there is an alien emergency. Thirty years go by and then he is brought in to investigate the deaths of the companies top scientists. On the surface it looks like an alien attack, but something is a little off. Anders gets the feeling the company wants you to believe it was the work of Xenomorphs but Anders doesn’t believe it.
This book is excellent, the human characters are well drawn and Evenson elevates the tie-in novel to art as only a few authors have. If you’re an Alien fan you should read this but if your not check out Evenson’s novel Last Days which is one of my favorite novels of the last few years.