Jere Cunningham’s The Abyss is another volume selected on a whim from the well-padded horror section of Powell’s in Portland. Having a thing for pre-internet-world horror is enough for me to pick up a volume and check for a reasonable price tag. Had I had any inclination of what I was in for, I would’ve pounced with little worry over cost (to a point, a used book by an author I’d never heard of is still a used book by an author I’ve never heard of).
In a small, undeniably realistically written mining town, Hell aches to break through. The old mine, sabotaged way-way back reopens and seeks to dig deeper than any mine has gone before it. Miners are the first to sense the danger. Folks brimming with human emotion, human downfalls, human worries and human abilities. Demons internal and external plague the miners, but work is food, work is shelter, work is life, work happens in the recently re-opened mine.
Cosmic horror of a Biblical Revelations breed seeps as the mine drives deeper. Oh the wonders of terror that blackens the sky and bloodies the water! Thorns and beasts, crazed animals and sick residents, the little town is quickly made unrecognizable by the poison of the mine, inflicting change upon all that it touches.
This thing is terrifying in all the right ways and written with an exemplary whip sharp style left aside too often in horror works. Crisp and concise, all is meat on this bone. Asolutely worth reading.