Paperback, 232 pages

Published Jan. 6, 2020 by Self Published.

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4 stars (3 reviews)

Insecure college senior Orion loves music, books, and his best friend Niko. When the two of them find a secret basement in their rambling old off-campus house, at first Orion’s thrilled. It’s another secret to share, another adventure to maybe, at last, bring them closer together.

But something's wrong: the basement doesn't end. Blandly decorated halls stretch on for miles past peeling wallpaper, empty bedrooms, and countless stairwells always leading down. Soon they realize Downstairs is a snarled tangle of possibilities, more and more opening up the deeper they go. Something down there multiplies everything: architecture, emotions, even people.

Together they must navigate an increasingly dangerous labyrinth that peels back their friendship to raw and angry roots, filled with two-faced doppelgängers, treacherous architecture, and long-buried secrets. Most dangerous of all is Orion's consuming obsession: somewhere down there, is there a Niko who loves him back?

Subcutanean is a unique novel …

1 edition

Review of 'Subcutanean' on 'Goodreads'

5 stars

I'm biased because the author is a friend of mine, but I adored this book. A good combination of campy Goosebumps-style teen horror and some seriously existentially terrifying moments. Fabulous use of generative narrative to evoke themes of multiplicity and subtle variation. And the relationship between the two main characters is so interesting, complex, and well-explored. At least in my copy, the resolution of both kinds of tension (interpersonal and paranormal) felt somehow both surprising and satisfying.

Review of 'Subcutanean' on 'Goodreads'

5 stars

I contributed to the IndieGogo but didn't actually read my copy (#10969) until just now, and I feel so foolish for letting it sit so long in my to-read pile. The story Reed wanted to tell requires that the book's shape and distribution take the form that they do (i.e., every copy is unique and must be custom-ordered); beyond that, the richness of the prose feels even richer by virtue of the fact that any sentence you read must be read against the affordances of the system that produced it. I have adored Reed's writing since Blue Lacuna, but he really has outdone himself here. It's so rare to read a book that is this heartfelt and so true to its conceit, but that still pulls you forward through it with such momentum. It's also rare as a horror novel—it is spooky (sometimes terrifying) without gore or intense violence; and …

avatar for spilliams

rated it

3 stars