Review: The Anomaly by Michael Rutger

The Anomaly

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Author: Michael Rutger
Released: June 19th 2018
Received: Own (BOTM Pick)
Rating: 3.5 Stars

The Anomaly was my Book of the Month pick for June, and on the whole I was pretty happy with the choice I made. The main character is described as being Indiana Jones in an X-Files world, but to be honest this novel really just kept reminding me again and again of Lovecraft. I’m not sure if that was intentional on the author’s part, but I’m going to give them credit for it anyway.

I’ve never read anything by Michael Rutger before, which is a penname for Michael Marshall (I haven’t read anything by him either). He’s got plenty of books under the latter name, but so far only The Anomaly under the former. I will say that based on this one book I’m impressed with his writing style, and would be willing to look into more books by him.

Spoiler Warning

Nolan is basically your average conspiracy theorist faux archeologist. Okay, that actually isn’t all that basic, is it? Its Nolan’s job to track down history that may have been, you know, the sort of thing that legit scientists over look because it sounds too unrealistic or made up. From there he’ll star in YouTube shows about said tracking, even going so far as to go to the supposed locations of these artifacts. It doesn’t much matter if he doesn’t find what he’s looking for, the point it to make the show and thus money, right?

This novel really had me hooked. I loved every moment where nothing happened – waiting for the other shoe to fall, so to speak. It felt like the sort of thing Lovecraft or Stephen King would do. Have you constantly waiting for something to happen, eventually making you afraid of the nothing.

That is, until things actually really did start happening. It gets pretty crazy from that point on, and honestly it’s one of those things you want to read in person, so I’m not going to spoil it for you. I will say that there were moments that made me cringe, moments that made me gasp, and other moments that made my heart pound.

Ultimately I do feel like the beginning and middle of this book were stronger than the conclusion. I hate saying that, because up until that point I was really enjoying myself. However I feel like the ending was a copout, and therefore it broke the promise of the story. There were actually two moments where I felt this keenly; the actual conclusion to the plot, and the revelation of the fate of a certain character (again, I’m being vague on purpose so I don’t spoil anything). I think both lost their impact because of the way they were handled. I honestly would have been happier had this book ended a couple of chapters earlier, even if that resulted with us never knowing the ending. In a way that would have been creepier and potentially keeping with the theme.

On the whole I was pretty happy with this novel, even if I did have some complaints about it. I really enjoyed reading it, and it was barely away from my side even when I didn’t have a moment to read. I’m sad that the experience is over, but I guess that just means I have to move on to the next book on my list, huh?


About Liz (AKA Cat)

I am an avid animal lover, photographer, reader, and much more. While my photography blog is feeling a bit neglected at the moment, the other sites I'm involved in are going strong. ✧I review books, comics, and basically anything else in the literary world over at Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks (of Books). ✧I review comics and books, as well as write content for Word of the Nerd. ✧I review comics for Monkeys Fighting Robots. ✧I write content for Screen Rant and CBR. ✧I write book reviews for The Review Crew.
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