The Luminous Dead
Books | Fiction / Science Fiction / Space Exploration
Bram Stoker Award nominee for Best First Novel!"This claustrophobic, horror-leaning tour de force is highly recommended for fans of Jeff VanderMeer’s Annihilation and Andy Weir’s The Martian." -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)The thrilling, atmospheric debut from the author of The Death of Jane Lawrence, a novel with the intensive drive of The Martian and Gravity and the creeping dread of Annihilation, in which a caver on a foreign planet finds herself on a terrifying psychological and emotional journey for survival.When Gyre Price lied her way into this expedition, she thought she’d be mapping mineral deposits, and that her biggest problems would be cave collapses and gear malfunctions. She also thought that the fat paycheck—enough to get her off-planet and on the trail of her mother—meant she’d get a skilled surface team, monitoring her suit and environment, keeping her safe. Keeping her sane.Instead, she got Em.Em sees nothing wrong with controlling Gyre’s body with drugs or withholding critical information to “ensure the smooth operation” of her expedition. Em knows all about Gyre’s falsified credentials, and has no qualms using them as a leash—and a lash. And Em has secrets, too . . .As Gyre descends, little inconsistencies—missing supplies, unexpected changes in the route, and, worst of all, shifts in Em’s motivations—drive her out of her depths. Lost and disoriented, Gyre finds her sense of control giving way to paranoia and anger. On her own in this mysterious, deadly place, surrounded by darkness and the unknown, Gyre must overcome more than just the dangerous terrain and the Tunneler which calls underground its home if she wants to make it out alive—she must confront the ghosts in her own head.But how come she can’t shake the feeling she’s being followed?
Community ReviewsSee all
"A slow but tense book about a woman who gets more than she bargained for signing up for a mysterious underground expedition with a paycheque that was too good to be true. I liked the descriptions of the caving itself and the push and pull between the main characters, the caver and her handler. I do think Em wound up being a bit too soft (and it's sort of weird imo that she's so young considering she's already sent over 20 expeditions into this cave by the time Gyre tries it) and the Tunneler was scarier before the baffling decision near the end to force a confrontation with it but overall great book."
"Amazing book, it far exceeds my expectations. It takes you on a journey and leaves you alone in the dark with these two characters. No light, and no information. And over the course of the book you learn to truely empathize with the characters. One of the few books that have made me cry and made me feel empty. 11/10 probably don't read if you don'y like dialogue or sad things. "
"Absolutely fantastic quick read- thrilling and gay. Love it"
"Wondeffully written horror. Im a sucker for some good enemies to lovers."