Book Review: We Can Never Leave This Place by Eric LaRocca

Title: We Can Never Leave This Place

Author: Eric LaRocca

Genre: Horror Novella

Number of Pages: 104

Rating: C+

Recommended?: No

WTF did I just read? Giant cockroaches, talking snakes, incest… what was the author on when he wrote this? At least it can’t be faulted in the originality department. I really liked Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke but this… not so much. It was just so bizarre and over-the-top gross. It was like a fever dream but not in an enjoyable way, I was just left going huh?

Mara, the main character, is sixteen (I think) but seems much younger. She and her parents live in a filthy, waterlogged apartment in a post-apocalyptic setting. At the beginning Mara’s dad dies and some men bring his body into the apartment and leave it there. Throughout the novella the dad’s body remains in the apartment in various states of decomposition.

Mara’s mom is a cruel, psychologically abusive bitch who seems to jump at the opportunity to make Mara’s life even worse than it already is. It seems like Mara was much closer to her dad and now that he’s gone, she has no one. A giant talking spider invites himself into their home and Mara’s mom soon falls under his seductive spell.

Then a snake, cockroaches and rats come into the apartment and start taking over. Mara’s mom is pregnant, and it becomes obvious that her life and the life of her unborn baby are in danger. Skeevy sexual content and gross, graphic body horror await.

I’ll be honest. I didn’t really understand this book. I’m not even sure I can give it a proper review. What I can say is that even though it’s extremely short (just over 100 pages) I felt like it really dragged. It felt like the author was trying too hard and Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke was much better written. I admire this author’s creativity and I’ll continue reading his books, but this just wasn’t for me.


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