Review: “Harrison Squared” by Daryl Gregory

harrison squaredHarrison Squared
Daryl Gregory
★★★★
Tor, 2015.

What if H.P Lovecraft had written a tale of rebellious teenagers fighting stygian horror? We don’t need to ask, since Daryl Gregory has with this prequel to We Are All Completely Fine, his magnificent 2014 novella which is shortlisted for the Nebula Award this year. The novella focused on a support group for victims of supernatural horror, and in Harrison Squared we get to see just what that horror was for one group member. Harrison Harrison, the teenage monster-hunter who survived the Incident in Dunnmouth.

We Are All Completely FineThe book is a loving tribute to HP Lovecraft without all that nasty racial purity stuff. Instead, Gregory focuses on what life would be for a teen growing up amidst the stygian horrors — learning non-Euclidean geometry and having vocabulary tests with words like squamous.

Fans of We Are All Completely Fine should note, however, that while Harrison Squared has a couple characters in common with that novella, the tone is markedly different. While We Are All Completely Fine was definitively an adult foray into the New Weird, Harrison Squared is firmly planted in the YA realm. It’s almost Scooby Doo meets The Shadow Over Innsmouth, only the villain isn’t Old Man Whateley wearing a fish mask.

Harrison Squared hits stores on March 24. Read my full review at “The Nameless Zine“.

—Michael Senft

Buy Harrison Squared

About Michael Senft

I am a freelance writer and critic from Phoenix Arizona. I spent 10 years covering music, the arts and pop culture for the “Arizona Republic” before life circumstances took me away from newspaper. But I never lost my joy at writing. Or reading.
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4 Responses to Review: “Harrison Squared” by Daryl Gregory

  1. Jeanne says:

    Interesting. I just read We Are All Completely Fine and am still not sure what I think about it. The parts with light and fire were less terrifying, for me, than the parts in the darkness.

    Like

  2. Tammy says:

    I just reviewed this today as well:-D I loved both books, but I still can’t believe how different tbey are.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m so glad I read both Harrison Squared and WAACF. I just got myself a copy of Afterparty, I need to check out more of Gregory’s stuff.

    Like

  4. Pingback: Tough Traveling — Otherworldly Creatures | Relentless Reading (And Writing About It!)

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