Primal Waters by Steve Alten – A Book Review


I was pretty disappointed with this book. There were a lot of things that I felt could’ve been done better.

It has a very slow start and the real action doesn’t truly begin until about 150 pages into the novel. There’s a lot of focus on what life is like after the glamour and celebrity status dies down. This aspect wasn’t too bad, but the family drama became a bit tedious and boring very quickly. There’s an adolescent character in the book that was so annoying that I found my interest waning much sooner than expected.

The creature attacks and deaths definitely get your adrenaline going, but it honestly didn’t feel like there was anything new or unique added to it to set it apart from the viciousness of the first two novels of the series. The suspense is forced and didn’t have the thriller element that originally had me hooked.

Even with these disappointments, the story isn’t a completely horrible one. I liked how the author implemented scenes from the late Pleistocene era. It was very interesting to read about the interactions and creature fights between ancient, extinct animals. Occasionally it can be jarring when it’s brought up in between action-loaded chapters, but I still enjoyed it.

While the beginning was slow, once it got going the pace stayed rather regular and comfortable with the plot twists. I wish there were more imaginative characters rather than the clichéd rich, scientists who go baddy. It’s so overdone and needs to be retired.

Overall, book three is my least favourite in the series. It has its shortcomings, but it’s not a terrible reading experience. I know that I’m still interested in seeing where the series is going, but I know longer feel the anticipation that drove me onwards from one volume to the next. This is a safe place to take a break. I recommend this for fans of the Meg serial, or people who don’t mind cheesy and mildly clichéd shark stories.

3 bulls outta 5!

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