It Looks Like Us
Page Street Kids
Published September 13, 2022
About It Looks Like Us
The remote terror of THE THING meets the body horror of WILDER GIRLS in this fast-paced Antarctic thriller.
Shy high school junior Riley Kowalski is spending her winter break on a research trip to Antarctica, sponsored by one of the world’s biggest tech companies. She joins five student volunteers, a company-approved chaperone, and an impartial scientist to prove that environmental plastic pollution has reached all the way to Antarctica, but what they find is something much worse… something that looks human.
Riley has anxiety–ostracized by the kids at school because of panic attacks–so when she starts to feel like something’s wrong with their expedition leader, Greta, she writes it off. But when Greta snaps and tries to kill Riley, she can’t chalk it up to an overactive imagination anymore. Worse, after watching Greta disintegrate, only to find another student with the same affliction, she realizes they haven’t been infected, they’ve been infiltrated–by something that can change its shape. And if the group isn’t careful, that something could quickly replace any of them.
Horror isn’t usually something I read very often– it tends to get into my head too much and then revisit me at night– but I tend to really enjoy books by PageStreet, so I decided to give IT LOOKS LIKE US a try.
And I was NOT disappointed!
From the very first, I needed to know what would happen to Riley. She’s smart and anxious and I found it so easy to identify with her. I loved the way she forged relationships with others on the team and even how confrontations with the monster who appeared as her team members affected her emotionally. Those scenes exploring how she felt hearing their voices and seeing their faces as part of something she knew was trying to kill her were some of the most gripping for me.
At less than 300 pages, IT LOOKS LIKE US is a pretty quick read. It’s told as a story framed with scenes from after Riley escapes and is being interrogated by two people she refers to as Good Cop and Bad Cop. As she answers their questions, she’s thrust back into the story of what happened, and we watch things unfold knowing that grim things are to come. I felt like that format heightened the tension for me, and I loved it.
So… in the story, Riley and the team go to Antarctica on a research trip arranged by a mega wealthy billionaire who has rockets that go to space and a company that makes electric cars. He’s named Anton Rusk. Yep. Kind of made me laugh when the story introduced him.
On the whole, I devoured this book. I loved its energy. I loved the way cleverness and desperation and some of the relationships between characters. Though horror will never be my preferred genre, I’m really glad I had a chance to read this one.
Content warnings for violence and body horror. Brief alcohol use and presence of drugs.
Recommended for Ages 14 up.
Riley has anxiety and panic attacks and is ace.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
Extreme profanity used frequently.
Two people undress and climb into a sleeping back together to ward off hypothermia. One reassures the other that he isn’t trying to have sex with her, he’s trying to help her survive.
Riley and her team encounter an otherworldly monster that can shapeshift and speak to them.
Some descriptions of violent death. The monster shapeshifts in very unsettling ways, sometimes melting from one shape to another. Sometimes its bones seem to crack and shift. Mouths open up in strange places.
In one scene, after a confrontation with the monster, Riley and her friends drink gin they’ve found. In another scene, Riley discovers weed among one of her team member’s things. The two people who interrogate Riley pump her full of some types of medications that prevent her from experiencing the pain and trauma of her injuries while they question her.
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