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Publisher's Summary

John Hawkins is counting down his last days as chief of police on the Lone Crow Reservation in the lonely, frigid woods of the Yukon. But when a faceless body with mysterious wounds washes up on the shores of the Porcupine River, he’s pulled deeper in than ever before.

Hawkins and coroner Jacob Littlecorn suspect the disfigured body is that of theoretical physicist Graham Raphelson, also known as the “molecular madman of Trinity College”, who recently disappeared. The two investigators enlist Meg Gilday, a charter boat captain, and Linda Raphelson to examine the place where her husband was last seen alive. There, they find a house infested with more than secrets: bugs wriggle behind the walls, and in the attic sits a bizarre machine cobbled together from toy parts and electrical wire, a device that might be able to tear a hole through the fabric of reality itself. When Meg and Jacob get bitten and someone goes missing, Hawkins realizes that firing up the machine might be the only way to solve the case.

Buzzing with suspense, this dark, gripping mystery from acclaimed horror writer Nick Cutter will leave listeners’ skin crawling. 

©2020 Nick Cutter (P)2020 Audible Originals, LLC.

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What listeners say about The Breach

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Oh, Nick... what happened?

The Troop and Little Heaven made me a Nick Cutter fan; even The Deep and Acolyte - although not as good - kept me wanting more of the author's ability to spin an intriguing yarn with plenty of strong characters who are plunged into plots that drag them into the other-worldly. So, I am amazed that Mr. Cutter wrote The Breach - a novel that has so little character build that I really didn't care much about any of them. As well, the reason behind the sci-fi mystery is disjointed and never adequately explained, making the story line flimsy at best. Even the creepy creatures could not save this unfortunate novel that concludes with a very predictable ending. On a happier note, Marc Vietor's narration is quite good.

1 person found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Disappointed

You could skip this confusing poorly written story for any of the Peter Clines novels.
Please do not judge Canadian writers by this piece of work.

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Recommended, Albeit a Bit Frustrating

I want to make it clear that I am an avid fan of Nick Cutter, (the horror-fiction pen name of Craig Davidson). The Troop is universally lauded as a masterpiece for good reason, and I'd stake that The Deep is just as good. In terms of weaving science fiction and horror, and in terms of extrapolating a concept to its most horrific possible extremes, Cutter is unmatched. I would go so far as saying that he is, quite possibly, a front-runner for the title of the very best living writer in his genre.

And this fanatical love of his other books may be the reason I was so disappointed with The Breach. In his prior books, Cutter strikes a perfect pace, building tension and foreshadowing without tipping his hand too early. In this story, the characters, buildup, and even the core concept of the story, are all sort of set up and passed over in a mad dash to bring out the body horror scenes. It all just rushes by too quickly. The narration is short and clipped, not doing enough to paint a picture of the setting. Where the island in The Troop, the research station in The Deep, and the cult compound in Little Heaven are all grand Gothic locations, the house and wilderness in The Breach is lacking in character. Finally, while the key rule of modern horror (whether you prefer to call it Weird Fiction, Cosmic Horror, Lovecraftian or Post-modern) is 'never explain anything'; The Breach suffers from having not quite enough explanation. There's the Philadelphia experiment, and some horrible parasitizing extraspatial presence that used it to break through to our world, then there's wasps, and maybe the wasps come from another world, or maybe they're normal wasps that have been corrupted. Who knows? The pig says "Cleanse" and bad stuff happens. There's all these separate pieces and we never get a clear view of how they're connected.

The second half of the book seems to recover. There's a particular scene that stands out, where two of our heroes meet a pair of squatters living in the woods, and it feels incredibly tense. There seems to be a longer, better book hidden in here, but it hadn't quite gestated properly before clawing its way out of its quivering, gelatinous pupa.

The performance was also spotty at times. The reader's voice was fine, but he did very little by the way of inflection to give each character a distinct sound. This can be OK, but the clipped, sparse narration makes it unclear which character is speaking at times, and you're left to suss it out from context. There are also multiple breaks in the audio track where one take is stitched to another, but the volume isn't corrected, so there is a noticeable leap up or down. I think a few more takes and a little more polish in editing could have cleaned it up just fine. In a word, I would call it 'rushed.'

If you're still reading this, you're probably confused by how I can still recommend this book despite complaining about it so much. The fact of the matter that the very worst Nick Cutter story is still leaps and bounds better than anything else in the same vein. The core of the story is interesting, the imagery in the later scenes is truly horrible (which is a feature, remember this is a horror novel), and I still enjoyed the last leg of the journey. I've had quite a few credits go to waste on books so lousy I didn't bother finishing them, so this is still worth picking up. But if this is your first book from this author, do yourself a favor, and don't let it be the last. Go grab The Troop, as well.

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Underwhelming

This story was just interesting enough to keep me reading, but it didn't make a ton of sense and the characters weren't overly compelling. Kinda just reads like an old episode of The Outer Limits or something. Not terrible, not great. Meh.

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  • S
  • 2020-11-04

Nick Cutter Does It Again

What an absolute master of the genre. This story is such a crazy ride that could only come from the mind of Canada’s gift to horror. Cutter deserves serious recognition for his creation of recognizable, flawed, likeable, doomed characters, and of course for making the readers skin bubble and crawl along with his creations.

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  • Rhonda
  • 2020-11-03

Don’t waste your time

What the hell was this book even about?
The narrator pushed me over the deep end. Seriously, don’t waste your time!

11 people found this helpful

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  • Michael
  • 2020-10-26

Insectile Ooze

A Nick Cutter novel couldn't have come at a better time. He is definitely one of my all-time favorite horror writers. Once again Nick delivers up a twisted and imaginative concept oozing with deformities and larval insects.

5 Stars*****

11 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-12-09

Yes.

Great literature? No. Great horror? Most definitely. I had to, at various times, turn on the lights, stop eating, or just straight up stop the book. This is modern cosmic horror at its finest. Lovecraft would have approved.

4 people found this helpful

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  • TonyBaloney27
  • 2021-11-22

Good premise, but meh.

I really wanted to like this book. It started well, and teased great things but ultimately did not deliver. Fewer detailed descriptions of insects and a main character’s…change would have yielded a far better story.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Colin
  • 2020-11-16

Nick Cutter Knows How to Scare Adults

This is just another shining example of Cutter's profound understanding of what horror fiction is supposed to be. He knows that, when it comes to making the adult mind feel fear, it's ideas and concepts that ware afraid of, not simply ghosts and monsters. Cutter makes you feel not just fear for what's happening now, but also dread for what comes next.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jake
  • 2020-11-08

Nick Cutter’s Least Interesting

Comparing this to three of his other books i have read (Troop, Little Heaven, Deep), this is my least favorite. It does have the same style and benefits of the others: shocking grotesque scenes without going overboard, ominous setting, and very real character actions (no classic horror-movie dumb decisions).

However, the lack of story lead-in and character development made it very hard for me to keep focused. His other three did a great job of laying the scene and giving the characters plenty of back story to relate to them. In The Breach, you are just thrown into the horror and intensity without much context of the characters.

I would 100% recommend the other three I mentioned above to a fan of horror lit, but I can’t say I would even mention this one. Give it a go, if you’re a big Cutter fan, but be prepared for the meat of the story right away.

1 person found this helpful

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  • James M. Thaxton
  • 2022-06-15

Another FANTASTIC novel by Nick Cutter!

Others have been quick to mention that this novel was their least favorite, everyone's a critic [roiling my eyes].
While the tone is classic creepy, truly scary in its narration, "LITTLE JUG" - - - oh yes, fantastic narration including some rather unsettling voice effects that gave me the chills SEVERAL TIMES throughout the book. It just added to my love for the style of Nick Cutter's way of creeping the hell out of me.
While this novel is a bit shorter than his others, it is VERY EFFECTIVE in delivering what I've come to love and expect from the writing style of Cutter.
That is to say, pure horror that doest try to hold back, although not some cheesy gore fest, but rather his unique styled approach, which I imagine might be the stuff that he knows, he would want to read himself.
About this novel itself. Folks have so easily thrown around words that liken the style to some Lovecraftian theater piece.
I read that a little, but the buck ends there IMO - simply having to do with this, "contraption" which may or may not remind you of an ability to breach another dimension. Really, the buck stops there, as far as I'm concerned, w/ the admired otherworldliness of good 'ol H. P. Lovecraft.
The rest, is pure Cutter. Strange and wickedly horrific in the best of ways, of course. Honestly, ever since I came across his 1st novel as, Nick Cutter' entitled, 'The Troop'. Which I finished with hook, bait, and sinker....such an amazing experience had taken place that, "holy shit, I can barely believe it". My faith had been restored in the horror genre.
Of course I still had my few authors whose ouvre were pretty much devoted to the genre of horror exclusively, (Clive Barker and Steven King). Those two really have different styles of prose, and honestly I really felt like they were lacking in ways that would truly scare me as I read, or listened to their works.
This was the case, unfortunately like I said previously,. Until I read, 'The Troop', then I felt truly unnerved and scared as I listened to a brand new voice in horror. Having, Steven Kings backup quoted on the cover, didn't hurt one bit. So yes, 'The Troop " was a pure slam-dunk.
Subsequently, not too long after reading the troop, I was ready for another Cutter novel. Like, in a bad way.
SO, I stumbled upon,' THE DEEP'. Having not a CLUE what this was about, I dove head first and allowed myself to slowly sink to the bottom [pun intended].
Okay, I will wrap this review up by saying. Everyone is a critic and to judge a book by its cover or simply some piss poor ratings hear and there, especially in this digital world we find ourselves in, is surely an egregious mistake. Possibly even one of the highest order.
Bottom line is that Cutter's most recently published novel, 'The Breach' may be a mere 6 hrs long, but the narration is top of the line, and believe me - down right spooky if not as my own experience, it was freaking scary when it was needed or called for.
The combination of Novel, Narrative effects, etc., turned this audio book into one vivid, picturesque, unnerving, and unrelenting experience. WELL WORTH THE CREDIT OR SIMPLY THE PURCHASE.
To close, I wanted to quickly share my experience Cutter's, 'THE DEEP'.
By far and wide, this unique, hard hitting, no holds bars, balls to the wall chunk of time consuming novel is, HANDS DOWN, the SCARIEST book I've ever been exposed to.
I mean this from the depths of my soul. I almost struggled to keep my sanity somehow. Whether it was getting a little too intense or the simple fact that I was fearful of genuine nightmares, which I will tell you that I often dream weird stuff as it is. However, the ideas, the insanity of it all [the story] was something I literally, and viscerally felt so vividly...I could see it creeping into my dreams.
So, yes. Do read or better yet listen to 'The Breach', "LITTLE JUG!", then if you dare, and I mean to be literal, you should challenge yourself to sink your teeth into the deepest part of the ocean. Where things just go wrong, no matter how much anyone tries to makes sense of things.
Is it the character whose sanity is in peril? What if you are actually lucid, and this nightmare at thousands of feet below the surface IS A REALITY, DESPITE ITSELF or seemingly impossible Plausibility?
I guarantee, you will not only become the main character; experiencing the same fright, confusion and frustration as you bump into the small laboratory and otherwise staff in this tin can that constantly fights the immense pressure of the deep ocean, being reminded of the fact, with the threatening sounds of collapsing walls.
Either way, between the staff you run into at various times, you wonder what has been going on down here. Because, surely they are not acting normal and soon you will be questioning your own sanity.

Nick Cutter's - THE DEEP - WILL SCARE YOU SHITLESS. AS I MENTIONED - IT'S AN ASSAULT TO YOUR SENSES, REALITY, eventual paranoia, and inevitable FEAR for your own sanity.

Keep them coming [pen name] Cutter, Nick.
As a horror nut for books, movies, etc. We're only two years apart in age. I understand where you are coming from, generationally. Not to mention that I have finally found a source of entertainment, possibly the most imaginative, being interpretation of my minds eye, with your aid...something that genuinely scares me. At 44 years old. Before I read your Cutter Opus, I honestly thought I would no longer have those wonderfully emotional moments of true fright or downright TERROR!

THANK YOU FOR THAT6.

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  • LLD
  • 2022-06-08

There is one problem with Nick Cutter

The one problem I have with this author is that I can’t get enough and read(listened) to every book 2-3x and really REALLY look forward to more! I’m not sure how he differs from my other favorite horror authors, maybe because his stories get under your skin.. I listen when I walk, when I paint, when I relax even before falling asleep.. he creates the most bizarre dreams! I actually look for an excuses to keep listening! If you like horror but not just gore but a story that draws you in, that has you loving the characters and makes you think for a long time after reading.. Nick Cutter is the man for you! I can’t say this was his best because all of them are his best! You won’t be disappointed!!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Justin Meadows
  • 2022-05-21

An terrifying, amazing and chilling performance!

Stellar performance!!! And, like everything I've ever read by Nick Cutter, stellar writing! This narration breathes an itchy frost into a horrifying tale.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Oleary
  • 2022-04-30

Another Disappointment From Nick Cutter

The man knocked it out of the park with The Troop, one of the best horror novels I've listened to in I don't know how long. So good I picked up a paperback copy just to have. It seems that every book since then had been a real swing and a miss sadly, this one included. While he still excels on gorey details, he once again flubs characterization and endings, though instead of going on too long this book just abruptly ends just as things got interesting. The narrator is fine though he can't do a woman's voice nevermind two different woman and his voice for the main character sounds far older than the character actually is. I want to like this book I do, it's a cool premise don't get me wrong but it leaves way to much unanswered which can be scary but in this case it just feels unfinished. I can't in good conscience recommend this book, pick up Yhe Troop and you won't be disappointed.