Griffin Reads –Beast

Title: Beast

Author: Peter Benchley

Genre: Thriller, Horror

Summary: In Peter Benchley’s “Beast,” the tranquil waters of Bermuda turn into a nightmare as a series of mysterious and savage attacks terrorize the island. Fisherman Whip Darling, along with a team of scientists and amateur hunters, finds himself facing an unimaginable horror from the depths of the ocean. As the body count rises and panic grips the island, Whip and his companions must confront a massive, prehistoric sea creature. They embark on a perilous journey to stop this relentless beast before it devours everything in its path and transforms paradise into a hellish abyss.

Content Guide:

  • Moderate swearing
  • Graphic violence and intense, suspenseful scenes
  • Themes of fear, survival, and the unknown

My Thoughts:

“Beast” by Peter Benchley, known for his classic “Jaws,” once again plunges readers into a world of terror lurking beneath the ocean’s surface. This time, the setting is the less-than idyllic paradise of Bermuda, where a monstrous predator disrupts the tranquility of the island.

This was the first Benchley novel I read, and I feel it’s actually his best work of the books I have read, including his most famous title. For me, one of the biggest selling points is the realistic representation of life for locals in a dying tourist community, as well as the surprisingly accurate depictions of marine creatures, including the titular beast. I’ve always felt that if I hadn’t been a creative artist, I would have been a marine biologist, and this book marries those two passions beautifully for me.

Benchley’s knack for crafting suspenseful narratives is evident as he spins a tale of primal fear and human resilience. The pacing is relentless, and each chapter propels readers deeper into the mystery and horror of the creature’s attacks. The characters, especially Whip Darling, are well-drawn and relatable, adding emotional depth to the story.

It’s important to note that “Beast” does contain some graphic violence and intense moments, which may not be suitable for all readers.

“Beast” is a gripping thriller that showcases Benchley’s ability to create suspenseful tales of humanity’s struggle against monstrous forces. While it may not have achieved the same legendary status as “Jaws,” I feel it’s a superior novel, and I recommend it to readers with a passion for the sea who are seeking an adrenaline rush.

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