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Literature / The Behemoth

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The cover, with thanks to Hieronymous Bosch.
A supernatural fiction novel written by Cameron Summers and released on kindle in early 2015. The Behemoth is the story of Roger Harding, a librarian in a university library whose best friend (and the object of a long-standing crush) is ritually murdered. He is drawn into an informal investigation of this incident, and a subsequent revenge plot.
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This incident also released into the world a strange parasite that takes up residence in his skin, giving him a connection to the murderer, increased resilience, and an ability to perceive the parasite's home dimension, a strange otherworld that the murderer seeks entry into and mastery over.

Can be bought from Amazon, and the author is answering questions on his website.


Behemoth contains examples of:

  • A God Am I: The villain's ultimate goal
  • The Anti-Nihilist: Roger's eventual outlook.
  • Arc Words:
    • "Don't take life so seriously all the time."
    • "Life is serious."
    • "You don't know what you're doing."
  • Blood from Every Orifice: Why becoming the Behemoth is a Painful Transformation.
  • Body Horror: In spades!
  • Carved Mark: Stephen does this to Jean later in the novel.
  • The Corruption: The symbiotes are worm-like creatures that can't survive on their own in the human world but thrive when inhabiting a human body.
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  • Dark World: The Otherworld is a distorted reflection of the "real" world.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Roger crosses it in chapter 2.
  • Dream Land: The Otherworld, which is distorted by the thoughts of humans in corresponding locations in the "real" world, but which causes resonance on the other side.
  • The Eeyore: Roger has some elements of this character type, though his internal monologue features a bit of snark.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Several. The Giant is described as a human-shaped "hole in the world" through which eyes and teeth float.
  • Eldritch Location: The Otherworld, for a hat trick.
  • Emergency Transformation: The first time Roger becomes the Behemoth.
  • Epigraph: Every chapter opens with a vaguely thematic one.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Jean, late in the novel, due to The Corruption
  • Fighting from the Inside: Roger and the Giant.
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  • Good Thing You Can Heal: Given that Roger is crushed, eviscerated, subjected to fingore, vicious examples of Ear Ache — essentially a rather heavy Mutilation Conga — this is probably helpful.
  • Grand Theft Me the Giant's plan for Roger.
  • Have You Seen My God?: Bently, and those inhabitants of the Otherworld, occasionally refer to "the Truth", but have no more direct knowledge of it than garden-variety human beings.
  • Healing Factor: All infectees — Roger, Stephen,and Jean — possess this. It's the result of having a worm-like symbiote living in their bodies, though, and the symbiote grows more powerful with each healing.
  • The Heavy: Stephen Burton and his murders drive the plot.
  • Hebrew Mythology: Some terminology is taken from this — notably "Chayyoth ha-Qadesh."
  • Henshin Hero: Roger's transformation into the Behemoth occasionally has shades of this.
  • Heroic Host: Roger, for certain values of "heroic."
  • Hulking Out: Roger does this a number of times.
  • Instant Armor: Roger's transformations functions like this.
  • In the End, You Are on Your Own: As a result of Roger's asocial behavior.
  • The Juggernaut: Roger fears becoming this, and even has a hallucination to this effect.
  • Lady Drunk: Jean Burton. Interesting in that her drunkenness is never made an issue of — it's simply a fact of her character.
  • Lovecraftian Superpower: what the symbiotes grant.
  • Man Behind the Man: The thing Stephen serves. The Giant, who seeks to use the symbiotes as a bridge into the real world.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Elly can be considered a deconstruction of this for Roger. Their relationship has some MPDG qualities, but they're the result of him projecting them on to it over years of friendship, and he's unable to move from putting her on a pedestal to actually trying to have a relationship with her. Elly, for her part, has a great deal of affection for Roger, but considers them to be Just Friends.
  • Mr. Exposition: Professor Bently, the scholar who had a bad habit of Going Native in the Otherworld.
  • Necromantic: the epilogue features Professor Bently suggesting that there may be a way to restore someone to life.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: The Giant is more akin to the mythological conception of a primordial monster than a giant person.
  • Over and Under the Top: Comparing Roger (under) to Detective Logan (over), regarding adherence to rules and laws.
  • Overdrawn at the Blood Bank: It's implied that Roger's circulatory system might be Bigger on the Inside.
  • Painful Transformation: Part and parcel of Roger becoming the Behemoth.
  • Posthumous Character: Elly Watson is only alive in the prologue, but appears through several flashbacks throughout the story.
  • The Power of Blood: The Behemoth has a carapace seemingly created from coagulated blood.
  • Recursive Reality: Roger's brief visit to Afterlife Antechamber implies this.
  • Serial Killer: Stephen Burton, splitting the difference between mission-based and visionary.
  • The Snark Knight: Roger has some shades of this, when he isn't being The Eeyore.
  • Super Mode: The Behemoth, though Roger's normal form is simply gifted with a healing factor.
  • The Symbiote: The worm that crawls into Roger's ear and lives in his brain, causing him to gain superpowers.
  • Talking to the Dead: Roger engages in this late in the novel.
  • Too Spicy for Yog-Sothoth: Roger and the Giant.
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?: Roger has moments of this after developing his healing factor.

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