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Terminal Freeze (2009)
Fiction Review by The Gravedigger

Terminal Freeze (2009) author: Lincoln Child

A research team, studying the effects of Global Warming on the arctic, discover a frozen prehistoric animal deep within a glacier cave. The team's corporate sponsor, which also owns an "Discovery/Animal Planet" type television channel, sends out a documentary production team to record it all. They dig it out in one huge block of ice, take it back to the old army base that's being used by the research team, and intend to reveal what the creature is on a live-telecast documentary presentation.They all think it's a saber-toothed tiger. They are wrong.

The creature, which was in suspended animation, breaks out of the ice and preys upon the humans, toying with them like a cat with a mouse (it's important you remember that analogy). it's up to Marshall, a paleoecologist, to figure out a way to stop or kill the creature before it kills them. He travels to a nearby Eskimo village to get the help of the shaman, who had warned him days before about awakening the evil creature in the glacier. He thinks that the old guy would know of a way to stop it. What the shaman reveals--that another, similar creature was found fifty years before, is shocking.

The one thing I did like about this book is the monster. it's creepy and malicious and has you saying to yourself, "What the f*ck is it?". However, the story is basically a reworking of the short story "Who Goes There?" by John W. Campbell, which was adapted to screen as THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD and John Carpenter's THE THING. The monster is ancient, they dig it out of a block of ice, it comes to life and kills them, they try to kill it with electricity and yes, it may indeed be "from another world". The novel's end was goofy, like from an episode of TALES FROM THE CRYPT.

I've enjoyed Lincoln Child and Douglas Preston's RELIC books and their other collaborations, but I can't at all recommend this solo venture. It is simply too dumb.

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