Firstly, this cover is ridiculously beautiful. Secondly, I’m not getting any sleep tonight! Seed was haunting and had me so on edge throughout the whole book. There’s this giant sense of foreboding that something has to go terribly wrong. Part of me wished I could unread this book because it was just so unsettling!
Seed is about a cult that goes by the same name, and in the cult they worship nature. Papa S the leader of the group believes he is a vehicle for Nature’s voice and dictates everything that the cult does. We learn more about the cult’s ideologies as the story continues and we don’t get the full picture until the very end. I’d say the only thing that I struggled with was that this is supposed to be taking place in a contemporary context. I’m sure there are strange cults like this one out there, but Seed seemed to back onto rolling hills and streams, so I would’ve liked some clarification of setting. Mostly, I just imagined Seed in it’s own bubble with the world moving on like normal outside.
Pearl is the protagonist and she’s grown up to believe all of the lies that Papa S has told her and she only realised that Outside might be better when Ellis and his family are inducted into Seed. Things start getting a lot creepier at this point, because all of the male characters have very sketchy motives and the idea of Companions makes my skin crawl. Essentially the men were picking out women to rape. Not really something I want to read about. The children of Seed aren’t supposed to know who their mothers are, but surely with a limited gene pool it has to be pretty obvious? I don’t really like thinking about all the kids and how Seed grew because there has to be some incest ancestry in there somewhere. *shiver*
Tension was built extremely well throughout the story and I think the pace was perfect for the genre. I really loved the unsettling narrative that was in italics that’s interspersed without because it added a whole other layer of dramatic irony and added to the mystery of Seed. I was so scared for Pearl, Kate, Jack and Ellis because every time something bad happened I was practically screaming for them to run, but of course they didn’t know any better.
Seed really is something special and will definitely increase your heart rate. It’s very understated, though. With tension being consistently built, it’s hard to pinpoint the climax of the story. I was slightly dissatisfied with the ending because I needed a more resolute ‘everything’s going to be okay’ message. I couldn’t believe it when I got to five pages before the end and we were still at the height of the story. Seed doesn’t have the happiest ending and I can promise you that this story will stay with you forever, whether you want it to or not! You may also be glad to know that there was no romance in this book at all! So, I’m not entirely sure why it’s blurbed as a ‘tense romantic thriller.’
Overall, I gave Seed 2 stars, because although I really loved the tension and the reading experience, I wasn’t a big fan of the story. I mean, I liked it, but it also creeped the hell out of me making it hart to rate.