Godzilla Vs Kong: Greg Keyes
Reviewed By Steve Stred
I can’t rightly think if I’ve ever read an ‘Official Novelization’ before?
Maybe many years ago? But it’s something over the past decade I can assure myself I’ve not, which made reading this an interesting experience.
On the one hand, I have a four-year-old at home who is a Godzilla/Monsterverse fanatic. One who’s made me love these creatures as well, learn their names, backstories and get excited for what’s to come.
At three years old, he randomly came across Godzilla on Youtube and has been hooked ever since. We’ve watched all of the US releases as well as a number of the TOHO releases.
This all led to us having a movie night to celebrate Godzilla vs Kong being released and renting it on Amazon Prime to enjoy.
But throughout all of this, never once did I consider reading the ‘Official Novelizations.’ That is until I was chatting with Tim Lebbon. Tim wrote the Official Novelization of Kong: Skull Island and he kindly sent me a signed bookplate for my son which will be put into the book once it arrives. Shortly after receiving Tim’s kind gesture, this book was offered up for review with Kendall Reviews and the group joked that this had my name all over it. And you know what? They were right.
What I liked: This is an odd one to review because I’ve already watched Godzilla vs Kong five times since it was released. So, for the most part, I knew exactly what was going to happen.
A brief synopsis/reminder – the book follows Monarch as they discover Godzilla is on the move again. Since the events in Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Godzilla has remained fairly dormant. But now, our atomic breath blowing Titan is moving through the ocean. Meanwhile, Kong has grown angry at his imprisonment in the Monarch Base on Skull Island. And lastly, a billionaire is secretly creating his own ‘Titan’ to show just how strong mankind really is.
If you’ve seen the movie, you’ll know what happens and how we eventually get a massive battle between our beloved creatures in Hong Kong. But even if you have seen the movie, or haven’t, the book does a great job of adding to the story, creating great depth in the characters that were sorely missing in the onscreen version and filling in the details both from the last movie to this one, but also through some of the scenes that felt a bit rushed and didn’t have the impact I was hoping for when I watched it (I’m looking at you Warbat).
Keyes does a great job of giving the human characters the right amount of personality that feels less “pomp” over what the big screen versions had, which was great for me, as a number of the actors I’ve never been fans of.
Lastly, Dr. Nathan Hind, portrayed by Alexander Skarsgard in the film, really comes to life in this novel. His Hollow Earth theory and explanations are significantly better here than shown in the movie.
What I didn’t like: It truly doesn’t matter how talented of a writer you are or what your resume shows, for me at least, justice just can’t be done for the sheer scope of the battle at the climax of the movie. Keyes does a really great job of describing it and jumping back and forth between the key places and scenes occurring, but ultimately, it didn’t have the same impact as seeing the Titan’s come to blows visually.
Why you should buy this: Well, completists in the Godzilla world will buy this either way, and they’ll enjoy it. If you’re not a massive fan of the scaly one and prefer to experience your entertainment through books versus film, this one has emotional depth, fantastically described creatures and was a really well done action-adventure story. It just happens to feature 300-foot beasts.
Godzilla Vs Kong
The official novelisation of the biggest battle in movie history Godzilla vs Kong, the latest film in the MonsterverseTM franchise, starring Alexander Skarsgard, Millie Bobby Brown, Rebecca Hall, Kyle Chandler and Zhang Ziyi.
Humanity fights for its future as Godzilla and Kong embark on a path of destruction that will see the two most powerful forces of nature on the planet collide in an all-out war!
Writer Greg Keyes returns once again to the Monsterverse and takes readers deeper into the worlds of Monarch, the Titans, and so much more.
Steve Stred is the author of a number of novels, novellas and collections. He has appeared in anthologies with some of Horror’s heaviest hitters.
He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada with his wife, son and their dog OJ.
You can follow Steve on Twitter @stevestred
You can follow Steve on Instagram @stevestred
You can visit Steve’s Official website here