* AesopAmnesia: In-universe, the likely reason the date is encoded with only a [[MillenniumBug two-digit year]]. The actual reason, of course, is to make the actual date more mysterious.
* CrowningMusicOfAwesome: Eliot Goldenthal's score is quite exquisite.
* GeniusBonus: The novel involves a cryptogram. A plot point is that a character deliberately errs in solving it, changing its meaning by changing two letters. The deception is not revealed until much later in the novel, but if the reader solves the cryptogram himself, he discovers it right away. This word is ''a character's name'' [[spoiler: and he's the one who mistranslates the cryptogram so as not to implicate himself.]]
* NightmareFuel: Imagine the scariest sea-creature lurking in the back of the mind of a ''marine biologist'', and now give them the power to ''make it real''.