What Are We Reading?: Mycophoria, by Tom G.H. Adams
5/5 Orange-Bleeding Ears
Give me the short version:
Can a mysterious new outbreak be controlled, before it's too late?
You know, I was worried I'd never again capture the excitement of being a teen diving into a brand new James Herbert or Dean Koontz. With Mycophoria I've rediscovered everything I loved: fast dynamic pacing, a broad cast of enjoyable well thought out characters, body horror, and a generous sprinkle of science.
Mycophoria confidently broadens its ambition and scope as you go, starting small and opening up big so that it never loses its audience despite the speed at which events unfold.
Particular shout-outs to Chapter 5: Huskies, and Chapter 13: Suffer the Little Children for making me grieve for the outbreak's impact on ordinary people. Some characters only appear in a single chapter, but during that time they draw breath so vividly that the tension is nerve-rending when the orange gunge starts flying.
I've had the pleasure of reading a few of Tom G.H. Adam's novels now and I must say his development of craft, having already started good, has been exponential. It makes me a little afraid to read what he has lined up for us next, in case he manages to go full Sutter Cane.
"The realisation struck Olivia that she'd just pronounced the woman dead. How did she know? The same way she'd known her Dad was gone that late November. Not the lack of breath from the nostrils or the fact that his chest didn't rise or fall anymore. It was to do with the absence of something. Like the essence of the person had departed. She'd seen this in the way the woman's hand was splayed open, the phone laid in the centre of her palm."