Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water... Peter Benchley decides to imitate himself by writing a rehash of Jaws. Alas, Beast reads like a novelization of one of the too many derivative, immediately forgettable, and usually just bad marine monster movies spawned by the success of Jaws. Basically it's a solid thriller, although lacking in characterization and background compared to the original it copies so freely from, but unfortunately the idea has been clubbed to death in the meantime. Reading this book is a continuous experience in déjà vu. Benchley's choice of the most clichéd sea villain, Architeuthis dux, a giant squid, tops it off. Beast borders on unintentional self-parody.
If you want to read a thriller about a large marine animal chewing up people, I recommend you read Jaws. If you already did, don't bother with Beast. This book should have never been written in the first place.
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