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Figgy O'Connell

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Underground - S.L. Grey Actual Rating 3.5

What happens when a racist, sexist, gun-obsessed family:
‘It’s the Chinks’ fault,’ Brett says. ‘They’re getting what they deserve.’
‘Yeah. But you see how fast the virus is spreading into the US. It’s a malicious threat, militarized. It’s going to hit, and it’s going to hit us big. Worse than there. It was aimed at us.’
‘But how come their own people are dying, Daddy?’ I venture, as politely as possible so that he knows I’m not debating.
Daddy shrugs. ‘Some foul-up? They dropped a vial or something?’
‘I bet they experiment on their own,’ Brett says. ‘Chinks’d do shit like that, Dad.’ Like he’s an expert on the world situation.
Are locked in with a little girl, her distant father, and their pretty nanny from Johannesburg:
His tone is placatory, but I’m not going to be disarmed. Any further than I am already, standing in front of him, barefooted, dripping wet in shorts and a T-shirt. But at the same time, I do want to avoid a confrontation. ‘Yeah, hi.’ Not taking my eyes off him, I step backwards, over the towel, lift it up and drape it over my shoulders and around me like a cape. Like it makes me a fucking superhero.
A rich couple with their fluffy little dog:
‘Keep your voice down. You’re upsetting Claudette.’
Bullshit. The dog’s tongue is lolling out of its mouth, its vacant button eyes barely visible through its fringe of coiffed hair. James is certain there’s a ‘no pets’ clause in The Sanctum’s manifesto. Oh well, if they’re stuck in the Sanctum longer than they expect, they can always eat the goddamned thing’s food (it’s expensive enough), or – worst case scenario – the dog itself. How do you like your shih-tzu, babe? Braised or lightly grilled? He snorts.
A man who wasn’t meant to be there, and would much rather be at home with his dying wife:
Whenever he closes his eyes, he sees Lana lying helpless and alone on the cot he set up for her in the parlour after she came home from the hospice, the tubes connecting her to life tangled around her limbs. The image is clear, sharp, so detailed that he can almost hear the suck and hiss of the oxygen tank, smell the medicinal tang that permeates the room.
A German family, whose patriarch has a mysterious past:
‘I am not speaking of what is in here. We must check the machine room for damage.’ The accent that Leo usually hides so carefully leaks into his voice. Ve hav vays of making you talk. James burps a giggle, hides it with a cough.
And the family whose patriarch was born in Korea:
Brett snorts. ‘Where you from, Jae-Jae?’
‘Vancouver. But we moved to Boston last year.’
Brett begins bouncing the basketball. ‘No, I mean where are you from originally?’
Jae can’t tell if this guy is just yanking his chain or is genuinely ignorant. ‘Like I said. Canada.’
‘You Chinese?’
Are locked up in a half-finished bunker, developed by an ex-marine?
‘Now listen up. I’m gonna tell you the combination, Will, just in case things go bad and I need you to back me up.’
‘Hope it won’t come to that.’
‘Doubt it will, but think it’s for the best. Trusting you to keep it to yourself.’
‘Okay, so it’s easy. One, nine, eight, four.’
‘Nineteen eighty-four?’
‘Like the book?’
‘Huh? Oh, I gotcha. But no. It was the year I joined the Marines.’

Well… Nothing good, that’s for sure!
‘I heard a monster knocking on our door.’
I put the cotton ball down and turn to her. ‘Just a bad dream.’
‘No. She said they’re coming for us.’ Her eyes widen and her mouth starts to fold down.
‘Who? Who said that?’
‘The big monster. She didn’t have a face. It was half made of blood.’ She’s trying not to cry but her chin is twisting a fat drop of water runs down her cheek.

The rest of this review can be found HERE!