I had the pleasure of meeting author Matt Dinniman at the recent World Horror Convention in Portland. He’s a smart guy, and I took an instant liking to him. He told me the plot of his book, THE GRINDING, and I bought it on the spot. In THE GRINDING, a person becomes infected with a strange organism. All it takes is a touch for you to become attached to the organism. Soon, the Grinder grows to become a giant monster made entirely of a seething mass of tens of thousands of people and animals. And it has a plan.
There’s so much I liked about this book I’m not sure where to start. The characterization is solid, the voice easy to get along with, there are touches of humor throughout, and there’s plenty of action and destruction. But probably what I liked the most was the innovative monster itself–a giant thing made entirely of people and guided by a malevolent intelligence. The Grinder continually evolves during the story in scale and capabilities, which offered unpredictability and surprises. The last act was very interesting too, as the purpose of the Grinder is revealed.
In short, THE GRINDING is one of the best books I’ve read so far this year, if not the best. I’m happy to recommend it for fans of monster, disaster and apocalyptic stories.