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In Ararat, by New York Times bestselling author Christopher Golden, an ancient evil inhabits a cave on the snow-capped, dormant volcano, in the most Eastern reaches of Turkey, that is Mount Ararat. Golden's writing is 'the real deal' (Stephen King) and Ararat will thrill and fascinate in equal measure.

'Golden puts it all together with tremendous skill and a gleeful relish' - Financial Times

Meryam and Adam take risks for a living. But neither is prepared for what lies in the legendary heights of Mount Ararat, Turkey.

First to reach a massive cave revealed by an avalanche, they discover the hole in the mountain's heart is really an ancient ship, buried in time. A relic that some fervently believe is Noah's Ark.

Deep in its recesses stands a coffin inscribed with mysterious symbols that no one in their team of scholars, archaeologists and filmmakers can identify. Inside is a twisted, horned cadaver. Outside a storm threatens to break.

As terror begins to infiltrate their every thought, is it the raging blizzard that chases them down the mountain - or something far worse?

320 pages, Paperback

First published April 18, 2017

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About the author

Christopher Golden

768 books2,295 followers
CHRISTOPHER GOLDEN is the New York Times bestselling, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of such novels as Road of Bones, Ararat, Snowblind, Of Saints and Shadows, and Red Hands. With Mike Mignola, he is the co-creator of the Outerverse comic book universe, including such series as Baltimore, Joe Golem: Occult Detective, and Lady Baltimore. As an editor, he has worked on the short story anthologies Seize the Night, Dark Cities, and The New Dead, among others, and he has also written and co-written comic books, video games, screenplays, and a network television pilot. Golden co-hosts the podcast Defenders Dialogue with horror author Brian Keene. In 2015 he founded the popular Merrimack Valley Halloween Book Festival. He was born and raised in Massachusetts, where he still lives with his family. His work has been nominated for the British Fantasy Award, the Eisner Award, and multiple Shirley Jackson Awards. For the Bram Stoker Awards, Golden has been nominated ten times in eight different categories. His original novels have been published in more than fifteen languages in countries around the world. Please visit him at www.christophergolden.com

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,140 reviews
Profile Image for Misty Marie Harms.
559 reviews415 followers
May 5, 2022
I seem to be finding all the horror books with demons in it this week. This one being the most terrifying by far. My second read by Mr. Golden, both 5 stars. Climbers discover what might be Noah's Ark high up in the mountains. Don't ask me why it is there, it just is. Cue everyone trying to get in on the discovery in the middle of a blizzard. They find something with horns that was entombed in a black box with old writing. All kinds of chaos start breaking out as the demon starts body hopping faster than an escort on a Friday night. Trapped inside by the blizzard with no hopes of rescue, with death around every corner, who will make it out. Outstanding read.
Profile Image for Matthew.
1,219 reviews8,985 followers
January 11, 2018
This was okay story with a pretty neat premise. Not super awesome or anything. Here are my thoughts on a few items:

The writing – I think this would have worked better as a short story. Even thought it was not a very long book, it felt very repetitive and drawn out. Because of this, I don’t think the suspense and thrills really ended up being all that suspenseful or thrilling.

The plot – I cannot say too much about the plot without giving it away, but I will say that I thought the main crux of the plot was very interesting, unique, and frightening. If only it had been delivered better!

The characters – All of them were so flat. Even by the end of the book I had some issues distinguishing characters and what their part was in the plot because nothing about any of them stood out. There is not really any character development (except they become angrier versions of themselves from time to time). If you like books with dynamic characters, you can skip this one.

If you really like horror, stories based on archeological digs (you know, Indiana Jones type stuff), survival in the face of very bad odds, then you may like this story. I do not strongly recommend it, but it did remind me of books that I love from those genres.
Profile Image for Char.
1,680 reviews1,553 followers
December 26, 2018
After an earthquake in Turkey, a massive opening is revealed in the side of a mountain, and the ship discovered inside that opening is the setting for Ararat.

Adam and Meryam, an adventurous engaged couple, lead an expedition to explore what is thought by many to be Noah's Ark. Their team includes archaeologists, representatives of Turkey, mountain guides and a priest, among others. Once up the mountain and inside, they discover what seems to be some type of coffin. Is this really Noah's Ark? What's in the coffin? More importantly, will the team get out alive? You will have to read this to find out!

Ararat raced along barely letting me catch my breath. As the team's investigation into the ship and its contents progressed, the story became darker and the tension hummed. The main characters were all complicated which added a lot to the atmosphere, especially towards the end. Once I hit the second half of this book, it became impossible to put down and I finished it in one shot. By that time, I had developed real feelings for a few of these people and I just had to see what happened to them, and let me tell you, that ending? I can't remember reading a more satisfying finale than this in a long, long time. Bravo!

A tale of isolation, frigid temperatures, snow, and something unknown; I can't help but be reminded of one of my favorite horror movies of all time, (based on a novel by John Campbell), called The Thing. This novel is slightly more complicated, but the atmosphere and the tension are there in spades, and what horror fan doesn't love that?

Ararat is everything it promises in the synopsis and more. I cannot think of anything that could have been done better, because this book is already perfect. My highest recommendation, most especially to fans of The Thing, or The Terror by Dan Simmons. Ararat is a MUST READ!

Available on April 18th here:Ararat: A Novel

*Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for the e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it!*
Profile Image for LIsa Noell "Rocking the Chutzpah!.
604 reviews208 followers
July 27, 2022
To say that I've been waiting a very long time for this book, would be a vast understatement. Maybe, not this book in particular, but a Golden book that would knock my socks off. Mission accomplished! I love the horror and mythology that Mr. Golden does so well. This story had all of that, plus some decent character development. Which makes it sooooooo much better when the poop hits the fan! How can one little ole' demon cause such a ruckus? Best thing I've read from this author in maybe a decade. Yep, I'd recommend it. My thanks go to the publisher and Netgalley.
Profile Image for Darth.
948 reviews
July 26, 2017
WHAT IN THE EVER LIVING FUCK?!???? How the shit is this even a book that exists as something that someone *actually* published? This author is, I am not even exaggerating, no better than some of the worst NoSleep writers. And, in fact, I'm pretty convinced this guy reads--closely--that subreddit. That's not to say NoSleep authors are bad, some can be good, but this story is such a travesty I'm honestly amazed the editor wasn't like, "Uh...did you lift this from a NoSleep story?"

But that's not all! The whole premise of the demon jumping into different bodies is so contrived, and I'm certain Golden has read the comic Demon, which is about exactly that.

That said, the premise of this story was cool, this dumb as fuck engaged couple find what they think is Noah's Ark on Ararat and go up and find a weird humanoid body--and at this point, I was like, "Awwwwhhh shit! It's gonna be an alien!!!"--but no!! It's a fucking demon! At least, that's what he says it is. They never really explain what it is.

Anyway, dumb chaos ensues where the fiance cheats on his fiancee with another girl then finds out at the same time the reader does that his fiancee has CANCER.

It gets progressively worse from there until he dies but she lives and the last line, people. The last line was something you would one hundred percent see in a NoSleep story, that dumb, shock value twist. Well
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede.
1,937 reviews799 followers
April 29, 2017
I was really bummed when I was not once, but twice declined for this book on NetGalley. So, when the book was released did I actually buy it, despite the fact that I seldom buy new books. But, just luck at the cover, it's fabulous and the blurb really intrigued me. I couldn't wait to read the book.

Perhaps I did have too high expectations because the book didn't really rock my boat. Sure, it was interesting to read, but it was never intense or terrifying, not even a bit chilling to read. It was ... OK. I just thought the story would be better. But, looking back can I see one big problem with the book and that's that the characters never came to life for me. They weren't fleshed out enough to make me care for them. I wanted to care for Meryam and Adam and the rest, but even when things started to go out of hand on Ararat, and people started to get killed off did I not really find the story intense because they were just names and let's face it, of course, the less important people would get killed off first before the more important ones were at risk. As usual. Yeah, I'm a grumpy horror fan. But, I like my horror books to be surprising and terrifying, not following a formula. Even then ending felt predictable.

The book was not all bad, I liked the beginning best when everything was still unknown and the ship hadn't been found and the things that happened after that. And I was curious to see how it all would end. But, for being a very short book did I feel like it took me ages to get through it.

So Ararat, didn't turn out to be as fantastic as I had hoped it would be. I liked the idea more than the result and I wished the characters had been more fleshed out.
Profile Image for Laurie  (barksbooks).
1,751 reviews699 followers
April 9, 2018
I went into this book with a wee bit of stink eye because although most of my friends loved Snowblind, I really didn’t love that one. I enjoyed the setup but when the novel decided to time jump 12 years into the future it tested my memory and my memory failed. I am so glad to say that Ararat didn’t hurt my brain, is genuinely chilling and the pages fly.

It’s about a couple who take the trip of a lifetime and leave for Turkey in order to be the first to document a discovery that will quite possibly shake up the entire world. They are on a search for Noah’s Ark. But what they find on the dig is so much more than proof that Noah and his Ark may or may not exist. They find a coffin with something inside that is most definitely not a man and terrible things start to happen soon after it’s unearthed. The least of them being a treacherous storm that traps them and their team with this monstrous thing!

This is one of my worst nightmares. My son loves hiking and it terrifies me. I always have visions of him falling off the mountain and dying or I fear he’ll stumble across some human monster lurking in the woods. Now I have some brand new nightmare fuel to add to my head thanks to this book. The feeling, on this high summit, is claustrophobic and pretty damn terrifying in and of itself but then a blizzard hits. Imagine being so far up on a mountain that you’d have to tromp back down if anything truly terrible happened to you in order to get proper medical care? Break a leg and you are pretty much screwed. This is not my idea of a fun time. The situation reminded me a little of those fools in The Ruins by Scott Smith who climbed a mountain in a foreign country to discover ancient ruins who only managed to get ruined themselves. Only this time there are no fools. Thank whoever. These people are intelligent and driven and the story is very, very scary.

There’s action, lots of characters that didn’t get me all mixed up but in all honesty none who I cared all that much about. Some of them, most of them actually, were very selfish, so minus a star for that because I like to feel something when someone is slaughtered and I didn’t get an emotional gut punch here. But did I mention there’s a monster that these people are trapped with on top of a mountain during a blizzard?! Ahhhh! I loved that part.

I listened to this book on audio, narrated by Robert Fass who does a good job with the male characters but left a little to be desired with the females and their accents. But you can’t have everything, right? I’d recommend reading this one in paper.
Profile Image for Erin.
3,094 reviews484 followers
April 14, 2017
Book hits stores on April 18th!

Like puzzles? Feel like you need to tangle with the supernatural? Enjoy dabbling in the odd horror? Well, this book might hold the key to quenching your literary requirements. In regards to whether or not those were the requirements I was looking for, I think I was more strongly swayed by some of the earlier reviews of the book. The Da Vinci Code comparisons sealed the deal.

Ararat takes place in the mountains of Turkey, when a group of mountaineers make a staring discovery. A wooden boat frozen inside a mountain. Could this be the the biblical Ark manned by Noah? Well, many people begin to think so and many experts in archaeology, theology, international organizations, and film makers descend to study it further. Amongst the group is engaged couple, Adam and Meryam, who are highly interested in presenting their findings to the world. But things turn bizarre quickly and many begin to question what kind of Pandora's box they just might have opened. Is it possible the old religious texts that hinted that Noah placed demons on his boat are true?

Yeah, so there were times that I wavered between rating this a 1 star or a 4. At 200 +pages, Ararat, is a fast paced read and I wanted to follow through to the end. But there was a lot of horrific violence in this story that at times, came across as a really bad slasher film. In addition, the characters were all pretty disgusting human beings. In Da Vinci Code, I think that Dan Brown was able to take the theory at the centre of his plot further than Christopher Golden does. Here the last 1/4 of the text escalates at a very high speed and I just wanted to get past all the horrendous violence that becomes a bit over the top.

So, a 3 star for me, but possibly it just wasn't the "right fit" for my reading palate.

Thanks to NetGalley for an uncorrected digital galley in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Montzalee Wittmann.
4,605 reviews2,309 followers
January 24, 2023
By Christopher Golden
What a good suspense story of evil and natural elements. An earthquake opens up part of the mountain and climbers are eager to explore it before anyone else. What they find is exciting and the young couple gets to be head of the exploration team, including Turkish guards, and an science team that included Ben Walker. Ben is really with DARPA.
They battle weather, each other, and the feeling of dread that fills the cavern. What they find should have been let alone.
Good and slightly spooky. Had me guessing.
Profile Image for Rachel (TheShadesofOrange).
2,206 reviews3,210 followers
January 12, 2021
4.0 Stars
This was an engaging horror thriller that mixed together demons and archeology. Given the subject matter, this novel reminded me of some of my favourite movies like Indiana Jones and The Mummy. The ending was a bit cliche, but it didn't personally bother me.
Profile Image for Melanie.
264 reviews46 followers
April 3, 2018
HOW THE HELL DID THIS WIN A BRAM STOKER AWARD??? If you want to read a book with two-dimensional, unlikable characters, that uses every cliche ever written from the horror genre, and reads like a cheap predictable spy novel hacked together by Dan Brown, then knock yourself out, this is the one for you. If, however, you want to be engaged with the characters, feel a genuine sense of unease and creepiness while exploring the darker corners of yourself and humanity in general (which is what GOOD horror lit does), find something else to read. Bram must be turning over in his grave....I'm going to need the whole cask of Amontillado after this one....
Profile Image for Bradley.
Author 5 books4,099 followers
December 16, 2019
Perfect for the heart of winter, this high-altitude psychological horror at the top of the mountain has a bit more going on than most of its ilk. That's to say, I LOVED the ancient history poking its head up out of the landslide. :)

It's a pretty classic horror romp, too, moving well beyond the usual thriller aspects and diving, head-first, into some rather great and surprising twists that make me feel like I'm back in a comparative religion course, shaking hands with devils, and dealing with cancer all over again.

Fun, simple, and multidimensional. We get in the heads of almost everyone, and that's great because it is, at its core, a closed-room mystery, too! :)
Profile Image for Mogsy.
2,071 reviews2,633 followers
May 12, 2017
3.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2017/05/12/...

Adam and Meryam are a newly engaged couple from very different backgrounds, but they have always bonded over their love of adventure. In recent years, they have even achieved moderate fame for their series of videos taken from their travels around the world. Now they are eyeing their next great challenge, an expedition to climb Turkey’s Mount Ararat after an avalanche has reportedly revealed a massive cave up high in the side of the mountain. Wasting no time, Adam and Meryam call upon an old friend to be their mountaineering guide, and together they begin a harrowing race up Ararat in order to be the first ones to discover its secrets.

However, what they end up finding in the cavern goes even beyond their wildest dreams. Within its depths, the couple discover the remains of a large ancient ship, which immediately raises the question: could this be Noah’s Ark, the great vessel that weathered the Biblical flood in the Book of Genesis? To answer this question, a full team is quickly assembled to excavate and study the find, with Meryam at its head as project manager. Included among the scientists and other experts is also a documentary crew, which is how, when a mysterious coffin is unearthed among the ruins, everything that happens next is captured on film.

Throwing caution to the wind, the coffin is pried open, revealing an ugly, desiccated corpse. It is immediately apparent to everyone present that this could not be Noah—for the body is twisted and misshapen, and the top of the creature’s skull is adorned with a pair of horns. The remains of the demon—for it is impossible not to think of it as such—puts everyone on edge, regardless of their religious beliefs. Soon, the tensions start taking their toll, with project members acting erratically and others going missing. Worse, there’s no escape, for a blizzard has swept in, leaving them all trapped on Mount Ararat with an evil force.

This is my first Christopher Golden novel, and I was not disappointed. Of course, it didn’t hurt that I’m a big fan of “snowbound horror”, which I truly believe is starting to become a bonafide subgenre of its own. The most effective stories of this type can make you shiver even while reading in the sweltering heat of summer or indoors beside a warm and cozy fire, if the author can convey the right type of atmosphere. There’s just something I find so creepy and oppressive about the isolation of wintry, sub-zero temperature settings, and happily, Ararat was no exception. Golden was able to capture the forbidding environment of the mountains, making it clear that, whatever may happen to our hapless characters, they are on their own.

I also enjoyed the novel’s premise. I think most people are familiar with the story of Noah’s Ark, but probably far fewer of us would expect it to be the topic of a horror novel. It made for a strange but suspenseful read, with just enough ambiguity to keep one guessing. Contrary to what one might think, the story is also very light on the religious themes, focusing instead on the human drama. Even without the threat of a demonic presence, trap a large group of strangers together in an inaccessible cave on the side of a mountain and inevitably you’ll see the fur start to fly. I was motivated to turn the pages simply because I wanted to see how everything would resolve, and in a way, the tensions and mistrust between the project members reminded me a lot of John Carpenter’s The Thing—all it takes is a bit of doubt and suspicion thrown into the mix, and even the strongest relationships can begin to fall apart.

Yet I do have one major complaint about this book, and that is the story’s pacing. From browsing reviews of Golden’s other works, it seems like a rather common issue among readers, and I couldn’t help but notice a lot of a similar pacing problems in Ararat. Namely, the author blew through things so fast that I barely had a chance to connect to any of the characters, and therefore many of their ultimate fates left me feeling unaffected. Character depth was also pretty much non-existent, with heavy reliance on telling rather than showing, and sometimes the difference between a good book and a great one is the effort and time it takes to develop these little details.

Still, Ararat was a solidly fun read, despite not meeting its full potential. It’s certainly no Dan Simmon’s The Terror, but these kinds of books are also satisfying in their own way, and not least because they are often guaranteed entertainment. If you’re simply in the mood to pass the time with a creepy thriller-horror novel complete with gore, violence, and a staggering body count, this book will get the job done well.
Profile Image for Bill.
1,592 reviews113 followers
May 23, 2017
An avalanche high up on the Ararat mountain unveils a hidden cave which holds the archeological find of a lifetime. Meryam and her fiancé Adam want to be the first to claim it. What they find after scaling the frozen mountain dwarfs even their greatest expectations. The possibilities are staggering. It will need to be studied. Analyzed. Recorded. It will test the very fabric of their religious belief systems (or lack thereof). And shit…it just woke up.

This was my first Christopher Golden. And it was damn good too. The writing was sharp and the imagery was vivid. Snow and blizzard conditions are a great backdrop for this kind of story and Mr. Golden really made me feel the chill in my bones. 4 Stars and Highly Recommended!

*I received an advance review copy of this release from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.This was it. Thanks, Netgalley!
Profile Image for sunny (ethel cain’s version).
387 reviews128 followers
December 21, 2022
Some authors shouldn’t write women, or men, or demons. Some authors should stick to coloring books.

The premise of this book was so intriguing to me and very poorly fumbled. Loved the diverse cast until they all turned out to be either into incest or could barely control themselves when “needing” to orgasm while in a room with a bunch of other people sleeping The ending was..creepy af - but not in a fun way.
Profile Image for Chris Berko.
471 reviews117 followers
April 24, 2017
Really more like 4.5. This reminded me of my favorite Michael Crichton books, Sphere and Andromeda Strain, with the slight supernatural leanings of early Preston and Child. It's a bunch of different people from a bunch of different fields and backgrounds that come together to study something that hasn't been seen for a very long time. I thought the story was cool as hell and towards the end when I said to myself "oh shit, it's about to get corny"... it didn't, very cool. This is the first book I have read by Christopher Golden, and while initially picking this up because of the setting and the comparisons to books like the Terror, I was impressed with the originality and sense of dread the story offered up. The Terror, Abominable, In the Kingdom of Ice, The North Water, I love books set in cold temperatures and I thought this was going to be another race to the top of the mountain kinda thing and when they reached the "top" at like 13% on my Kindle I had no idea where it would go. That's when the real story kicked in and I liked it, so overall for me a very fast-paced, fun read.
Profile Image for Richard.
998 reviews382 followers
June 1, 2017
Ararat is set in that always dependable horror environment: the cold, unyielding snow. It also works as a pretty effective locked-room thriller as well, taking place almost entirely in a recently-opened cave thousands of miles high up on the side of a mountain. In it, a group of scientists and adventurers discover what they believe to be the mummified wreck of Noah's Ark. But it really starts to get freaky once they find a tomb there with a body inside. A body with horns on its head.

As I mentioned before, the location sets a great mood and Golden does a good job at maintaining the atmosphere and the isolation of being stuck in a 4,000 year old shipwreck in a never-ending snowstorm. What's pretty potent in the middle section of the book is the feeling of paranoia that begins to infect the group.

The book never really took off for me though. Golden seemed to be skirting around a lot of interesting ideas and great moments but never really nailing it the way I'd hoped. Some of the conflicts and plot twists came off as strained and artificial. It wasn't terrible but when it features such great material for a premise, and it's effective setting, I expected to be more engaged and affected than I was. Golden does some solid writing here but it feels as if a stronger writer would have taken this story and killed it! Ararat may make for a good summer read thriller for some though, along the lines of Michael Crichton, Dan Simmons, or Dan Brown.
Profile Image for Ashley.
85 reviews22 followers
June 9, 2017
An expedition to Mt. Ararat in Turkey to uncover what is supposed to be Noah's Ark. Sounds interesting...especially with a horror twist. Unfortunately the delivery was disappointing. I was never able to really connect to the characters. The plot was predictable and the story could've easily been 100 pages shorter.
Profile Image for Mindi.
862 reviews270 followers
April 27, 2019
I love books about mountain climbing. Or books that take place on mountains in sub zero temperatures. I've had a fascination with mountains and mountain climbing since college, when John Krakauer and the team of climbers he was with lived a devastating horror on Mount Everest. I watched all the news footage and interviews from that expedition, and I was immediately hooked on stories about people who risk their lives for adventure. ARARAT definitely delivers. I immediately had to pick it up when I heard about it.

Not only do we have a foreboding mountain in a hostile environment, but suddenly an avalanche opens a cave on Mount Ararat that supposedly holds the remains of Noah's Ark. I also grew up with the Indiana Jones films, and archeology holds a certain fascination as well. I don't believe in an actual Ark, and the adventurous couple who climb the mountain in order to lay claim to its discovery don't necessarily believe in an actual Ark either, but what if? They have to find out, and what they discover leads to an archeological, nature horror novel with a paranormal twist that keeps the reader on the edge of their seat. Because the team who sets up camp on the mountain don't just find a biblical artifact, they find a sarcophagus that contains much more than they bargained for. And a storm is raging outside the cave that makes it impossible for anyone to safely descend the mountain.

I wasn't sure about this one at first, but once the discovery is made and the true action starts I could barely put this one down. Golden takes the story in a direction I didn't expect, and the ending is just perfect. I will definitely be reading more from him in the future.
Profile Image for Jon Recluse.
381 reviews254 followers
May 12, 2017
After an earthquake reveals a cave where none should exist on Mount Ararat, uncovering an archaeological find that could prove the reality of the Great Flood, a diverse group of experts, each with their own beliefs, expectations and secrets, brave the deadly terrain and brutal cold to decipher the ancient riddle.
What they discover challenges everything they believe....and believe they know. For there is an evil here....an evil that cannot die, cannot be deterred....one that doesn't care what humans believe.

A masterful novel, rich with atmosphere, a sense of place that will darken your dreams, chill you to the bone....and will induce a touch of vertigo.....populated by characters who are fully formed, and unique in their imperfect humanity.

An epic work of adventure/horror that has earned itself a place on the same shelf as H. Rider Haggard's SHE and Dan Simmons' THE TERROR.

Highest possible recommendation!
Profile Image for Frank Errington.
738 reviews57 followers
March 22, 2017
Review Copy

After an earthquake in the mountains of Turkey, a new cave is uncovered on Mt. Ararat.

"They spotted a cavern up on the southeast face that wasn't there before. Big one. Geologically, it shouldn't exist."

The news reaches documentary adventurers, and engaged couple, Meryam Karga and Adam Holzer who were eager to be the first to the site so they could potentially control the project. They are not alone on their quest and when the Turkish government finally gives their permission to start the climb, they are off on their journey.

Their nearest competitor was Armando Olivieri, the leader of a group of Arkologists—the people who believed the biblical version of the story of Noah's ark and had dedicated their lives to finding its resting place.

Other key players in Golden's intricately constructed story include Feyiz and Hakan, guides to the region of Mt. Ararat. Ben Walker supposedly working for the National Science Foundation, but actually for DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). There's also Kim Soeng, a UN observer, and Father Cornelius Hughes, an expert on ancient civilizations and languages.

What is found in the ark causes those assembled at the site, Muslims, Jews, Christians, and Atheists alike, to question their beliefs and leaves them shaken enough to become confrontational with one another.

"The current of hostility running under the surface of almost every interaction in the cave could have been ascribed to any number of origins. Most of these people had been crammed together inside the ark for weeks, unable to get truly warm or comfortable enough for a deep restorative sleep. The Kurdish guides and workers shot one another suspicious glares, some kind of fracture withing their own group. The project foreman, Hakan, seemed to hate pretty much everyone on general principle. And that whole stew of animosity existed even before they brought religion into the mix."

Ararat is truly the stuff great motion pictures are made of. Action, adventure, a love story, and a killer that seemingly can't be stopped. And, a story that keeps the reader guessing all the way to the terrifying conclusion.

Available in hardcover, e-book, and audio CD formats, from St. Martin's press.

From the author's bio - Christopher Golden is the New York Times bestselling author of such novels as Snowblind, Dead Ringers, Tin Men, and so many others. Golden was born and raised in Massachusetts, where he still lives with his family. His original novels have been published in more than fourteen languages in countries around the world.
Profile Image for Eli Easton.
Author 76 books2,657 followers
March 27, 2017
This is the best full-on horror novel I've read in some time. It feels like vintage Michael Crichton to me, with a plot something like: Dan Brown meets "The Thing".

A huge earthquake and avalanche at Mt. Ararat (in Turkey) exposes a cave in the snow. That mountain has long been rumored to be the final resting place of Noah's Ark, so a number of teams set out to explore the newly uncovered cave hoping to find archaeological gold. The first team to the cave will win the scoop. This "race to the cave" is only the very beginning of the novel.

The team to reach the cave first is an engaged British couple, Adam and Meryam, a quintessential digital age couple who make adventure videos together. They find that the cave is, indeed, the ark, complete with various levels of ancient timber floors and walls, "stalls" ,and the remains of a human family and animals. Also in the ark is a sarcophagus that contains the skeleton of something with horns that might or might not be human.

A group of scholars, Turkish bureaucrats, archaeologists, local guides, an American man sent from DARPA to see if the find can be weaponzed (uh-huh), a UN observer, priest, etc, all end up at the ark to investigate. They are high up on Mt Ararat, isolated from the world by a blizzard, when sh*t hits the fan.

At times, this feels like a monster movie, ala "The Thing", with the isolated group of people being hunted and picked off one-by-one. There's a supernatural element here, so this is definitely more horror than thriller. There were some nice touches having to do with dreams and the past history of several of the characters that gave the horror some depth and the book a bit of a literary edge. The story becomes quite tense and scary. It's quite a nail-biter. If you don't like violence, you probably need to skip this one.

I really enjoyed the pseudo-history/religious elements in the story, though they stay at an Indiana Jones sort of level. The characters were all unique and had some layers. Meryam, for example, who heads the project, is a woman who is not always likable but she is smart and ambitious and generally makes good choices. The sexism she faces from the local guide was quite realistic. Another stand out was Walker, the secret DARPA agent, who is a tough fighter but also compassionate and a thinker. The writing style was tight and unadorned. The plot moves forward at a fast clip and there's no fluff or filler.

I guess this has already been tapped for a movie. I'm not surprised as it totally reads like one.

Loved it! If you miss old-school horror, give this one a try.

Profile Image for Tammie.
219 reviews57 followers
May 10, 2017
Ararat is exactly the type of book that I love to read-creepy! Ararat takes place in Turkey where an earthquake/avalanche creates a large opening in the side of a mountain-not such a big deal until people start thinking that it may be in fact Noah's Ark. As a team is put into place and exploration begins- isolation, snowy/frigid conditions, and the finding of a sarcophagus (more of what's inside of the sarcophagus) causes tension and violence to rise among team members. Overall-an enjoyable and creepy read.
Profile Image for Jessica Woodbury.
1,639 reviews2,154 followers
Shelved as 'didnt-finish'
September 14, 2020
DNF. This is... very silly. Nothing about the expedition makes sense, and no one behaves appropriately. And it is not enough to have a scary thing getting in people's heads to explain why everyone is being ridiculous, because literally every character being ridiculous is not fun to read.
Profile Image for David Brian.
Author 19 books381 followers
May 15, 2019
I really enjoy horror stories based around history, mythology, archaeological sites, and/or isolated inhospitable places, so Ararat was always on my radar.

Following a powerful quake on the slopes of Mount Ararat, a bizarre find is unearthed. Could this really be the remains of Noah's Ark, embedded in ice halfway up the mountain? Furthermore, the wreck contains something unpleasant which the Bible-log didn't indicate would be on the boat. Cue a call to Adam and Meryam, two intrepid adventurers who make documentaries about unlikely dig sites. For this engaged couple, the find on Ararat is potential gold.

A swathe of other players enter the scene, including Walker, who is an undercover operative for DARPA, and Kim Seong, a strong willed representative for the UN. These are some of the main players, but there are many more.

With a large scale dig team embedded on the site, and isolated because of a severe blizzard, evil rears its head. The battle for survival has begun.

I enjoyed Ararat, and there is action aplenty. A desperate struggle for survival in harsh conditions, helped create the feel of a mountaintop 'locked-room murder mystery'.

However, there was a sizable cast of characters in this book and, at least for me, this presented a small problem. Most of the characters are barely fleshed out, so much so that I didn't really care about any of them. I also found many of the lead characters deeply unpleasant. Characters in books don't have to be likable, but it helps if there is enough flesh on the bones to make them interesting.

I realize this last paragraph makes it sound like I'm giving Ararat a beat-down, but I'm honestly not. It's a great premise, and I enjoyed far more of this book than the little bits that niggled me. So, for those like me who enjoy mythology, archaeological related monsters and mysteries, and fiction set in inhospitable places, I'd say go pick up a copy of Ararat.
Profile Image for Aristotle.
646 reviews72 followers
May 27, 2018
A Jew, a Muslim, an Atheist, and a Priest
walk into a cave...which is actually the entrance to Noah's Ark...so they think...and then people start dying.
I found this book to be a struggle. Plodding along with one dimensional characters and mediocre writing.
I was thinking this was going to be more like Davinci Code but ended up with a bad syfy movie.
Was the ship the ark? S.S. Minnow?
Who was the demon? A back story would have made this a better book. And the ending? Uh,no.
'The power of Christ compels you' ....not to read this book
Profile Image for Andrew.
2,232 reviews
November 11, 2017
I will start by admitting that I am not sure what to make of this book. I have known of the author for time and have read a couple of his books to know I like his style and he has clever and interesting stories to tell.

However this book I am not really sure what to make it. Now as usual I will try not to give away any spoilers which will make the next part a challenge.

Okay so the confusion (on my part) the story starts off with an intriguing idea and the whole atmosphere and environment are very effectively portrayed but as the story progresses I start to wonder what is going on.

The problem I will admit is that it felt like a number of story ideas melded together and although there was a coherent storyline all throughout I didnt feel it was not consistent - as if it had been written in sections. Now I know it never fair or a good idea to compare one book with another but I did wonder at times what was the end goal.

Now this is where it gets tricky with the whole no spoilers but I did wonder what the final motivations of certain characters where.

Now this makes the book sound like its very confusing - its not and the main character - the mountain is portrayed so well I wonder if the author has actually been there. Also some of the characters I would love to see in future stories (am not sure if this is ever an intention with Mr Golden) especially Walker. Who knows - but I know I would still pick the book up to read.
Profile Image for Boston.
421 reviews1,878 followers
July 21, 2020
The final star is reserved for the parallel universe in which the corpse becomes a zombie and terrorizes everyone
Profile Image for Maha.
270 reviews31 followers
April 22, 2017
It’s true that ambition is the path to success. But when ambition leads them to the top of Mount Ararat, ambition might turn to be out a lot more. Ararat is the horror novel by Christopher Gold which is one of the best horror books for 2017.

Maryam and Adam are a newly engaged young and very ambitious couple. Together they have coauthored a lot of books about their adventures and travels to thrilling and dangerous places. To them, that thrill is not only about making a living, it’s the way they feel alive. Having written three very successful books, Meryam comes to Adam with the new opportunity in hand. An adventure on Mount Ararat to explore an ancient cave over there. After a recent avalanche, the cave had emerged. Can this cave be related to Noah’s Arc? Can this be their opportunity to a groundbreaking discovery and thus to worldwide fame and fortune?

A team of researchers, archeologists, film makers and even UN and US representatives is assembled. Together they work at this extremely dangerous altitude to unravel the cave’s secret. The joy of the discovery is thrilling, but something is not right. Something is lurking in the shadows and waiting for them.

Ararat has been one of the best horror books I read this year. The adventure is very thrilling. Also the setting is more than wonderful. I love books about mountains and snow. If climbing such mountain as Ararat was not challenging enough, then there’s the mysterious evil on the top. It’s not only that. Christopher Gold has his way of setting the events and the characters. The writing style is eloquent and encompassing. I loved the way he weaved myth into his story, I stayed all night unable to put the book down. My eyes were closing, yet I was dying to know what comes next.

One of the things I loved about the book was the ending. It follows some classical masterpiece of literature, but I still loved it. I think it also gives way to a second installment. I don’t know whether the author intended to have other installments. All I am saying is that his ending allows for that. It can be a fantastic second installment.

Some few things I noticed about the book. I believe the author wasn’t successful in portraying how women are treated in the Middle East. He emphasized how the Turkish guide was not used to reporting to women and just tried to ignore Meryam and scorn her. Well, that’s not the case. Women in the Middle East are well educated and respected and can have whatever post they are entitled to just like men.

**Special thanks to NetGalley & St. Martin's Press for supplying my copy of this book in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. **

For all my reviews please visit http://www.meshascorner.net
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