Cold Storage by David Koepp

HQ | 2019 (19 September) | 320p | Review copy | Buy the book

Cold Storage by David KoeppIn 1987 an unknown fungus is discovered in a remote farmstead in Australia. It hasn’t left a soul alive. Bodies have been ripped apart by the fungus within. It arrived from space, it is merciless in its determination to survive, to adapt to new environments, to conquer anything in its path. The farmstead is bombed sky high but the American authorities have retained a small sample. It is sealed within a Cold War bunker in the US. But, when the Cold War ends and a storage company takes over the bunker, what are night-time security guards Teacake and Naomi to do when, one night, they hear a beeping noise coming from inside a wall? Something long forgotten has adapted. It has woken up.

David Koepp is a screenwriter who has worked on some of the biggest blockbusters, including Jurassic Park, and all of his blockbuster skills are put to good use in Cold Storage. This is a thoroughly entertaining, exhilarating and tense technothriller, which threatens to become apocalyptic, as something occurs to threaten all of mankind. I love this kind of book!

But at the heart of the book lies the people – Teacake and Naomi, we well as Roberto, who visited the farmstead back in 1987 and is something of a relic of the past, and maybe the only person living who understands the threat facing the planet. Most of the attention, though, is on Teacake and Naomi as the author takes his time to flesh out these two rather lonely and damaged souls. I loved how this was done. They’re brought together by a terrible thing, but we get to know them so well, just as they learn to trust one another. There is a real charm and sweetness to their developing relationship, despite the chaos around them, although I doubt anyone had ever considered ex-felon Teacake sweet and charming before. If only it weren’t for that beeping box.

Cold Storage is a pageturner of a thriller even if it does take its time when something else matters, such as the flowering of true love. We need to care about these people risking their lives to save the world. I loved the chapters written from the point of view of the cunning and horrible fungus as it documents its experiments along the way to achieving its true goal – feeding off every person alive. Some moments of the book are disgusting, as you’d expect from a disgusting fungus. Others are so tense. And all the time we root for Teacake and Naomi, this unlikely couple.

I read Cold Storage on a flight and it was the perfect read for it. The time disappeared in a flash. I’ll be watching out for more from David Koepp.

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