Veniss Underground

Veniss Underground by Jeff VanderMeer, McClelland & Stewart, 2023. Cover art and design by Tyler Comrie.

I took advantage of the recent reissue of Jeff VanderMeer’s Veniss Underground (originally published in 2003) to fill in a lamentable gap in my reading. What worked best for me in this novel were the creatures VanderMeer conjures—segmented worms turning into flying maps, ray-like creatures in a subterranean sea and the unforgettable Gollux.

In the afterword, there’s a writing fragment, which illuminates the novel, and a great background story about York Minster providing the inspiration for the writing process. These insights were unexpected and fascinating.

I recommended this book if you like phantasmagorical imagery and dark humour.