* 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''.
** Picture this. A marine biologist knows what to expect of any sea beasties she comes across. When facing creepy-ass snakes, she grabs them by hand no fear at all instantly recognizing them as harmless under the given conditions. Her fears won't just take form of some animal, something that is accidentally material enough for you to fight against. Instead they are, so to say, formless. [[NothingIsScarier You don't have a clear view on how will she act on them, nor do you ever know what her fears will manifest as]].