Top critical review
The Angel of Death bites the dust...
on May 16, 2004
I enjoyed Alten's debut MEG, despite some 2D supporting characters and a bad epilogue. But it took an effort to finish this sloppy, worse-off sequel.
First off, Alten seems to love to weave in unnecessary sexual and drug scenes. It's getting really annoying, and it's showing up in all of his novels. I mean, we can't ignore the real world and how people really are, but Alten puts too much of the grimy real world into literature. Perhaps it's too attract more audiences, perhaps it's too spice up the boring, badly explained techno-babble, but I feel as if I'm reading a porn novel instead of good prose.
The rest of the book is okay; Jonas is probably the only character who I actually liked, Mac works well as the comedic Al Giordino buddy but somehow he's become sinister in a way. Some characters cuss too much, and Benedict Singer, the main villain, has interesting philosophies but is weak and more of an annoyance than a hateable character. Celeste, the second-ranked bad girl, is way too slutty and I actually laughed at Alten's pathetic attempt to develop her. Terry, Jonas' wife, is too cliche' and somehow makes you want her to die.
But, Alten's saving grace is what started his career: Carcharadon Megalodon (or something like that.) The shark scenes are well-done, and although they are overly gory, it was nice to see the Meg in some new situations. The only problem is that Alten kills off too many characters; I think he cares for the Meg more than he cares for the humans. MEG, Domain, and Goliath are his best, and he seems to be slipping off the track with this and the even dumber Resurrection, so hopefully Primal Waters will redeem him for these literary mistakes.