By Michael Phillip Cash
Author’s Website: http://www.michaelphillipcash.com/
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt
Seth is laid off from work. His wife Lara just found out they are expecting a baby this summer. Seth plans on documenting the entire pregnancy with his brand new digital camcorder. During an evening home watching television, the news reports that a swarm of cicada (Brood Ten) are expected to overwhelm the entire Northeast. Brood Ten is vicious and ready to invade. During a sweltering summer night, Brood Ten emerges and wreaks havoc with the electric grid, phone and cell service, wi-fi, food and water supply. Civilization as they know it is gone. Seth and Lara are thrown back to the stone age in their own home with trillions of cicada trying to deposit their eggs and breed. Fast paced and filled with tension, Brood Ten is the perfect summer read when you’re sitting outside listening to the cicadas sing.
Brood X: A Firsthand Account of the Great Cicada Invasion starts at the end of this thrilling tale of an epic catastrophe. As a hospital is under attack, an EMT brings a video camera he has found to a pair of security guards. As they begin to watch it the reader is set up to gasp and grasp at what could possibly happen. The reader has no idea what is coming next and if this were in the theaters, we would be on the edge of our seats. The writing is entertaining and elevates the written word to a movie in the mind.
As the novel continues the reader is introduced to Seth and Laura a couple just finding out they are expecting. Seth decides to document the whole pregnancy. Little hints of the devastating cicada invasion are dropped throughout the first part of Laura’s pregnancy. As some people in the Northeast prepare for what could become doomsday, Seth, in his laid back manner, seems to believe things will be just fine. Even as his eccentric neighbor pleads with him to take action, Seth laughs it off and records with his video camera.
Even as Seth ends up stocking his closet with bottled water, that goes missing when one of Laura’s “friends” and her boyfriend end up staying with them. Marni and Dom are in Seth’s words “leeches” and cause more problems than anything. As the invasion does come to their neighborhood, things start to get serious. Michael Phillip Cash has a writing style that would play out so well on the big screen. As I was reading those horrific scenes with the cicadas invading, I could truly see it playing on that screen. And it was ugly.
This novel not only scares the bejeezus out of you, but makes you see how even something so small can bring down a city and more. I was not prepared for how powerful the writing would be and how much I would actually be scared. The fear comes not from some hairy, huge monster, but from a 4 inch BUG. This is an intense short novel, full of thought provoking scenes that truly make an impact. This is a surprisingly horrifying tale, woven in words that jump from the page and leave the reader scratching at imaginary bugs and jumping from the unheard song of cicadas. Summers will be quite different for me.