This Skin Was Once Mine and Other Disturbances

Titan. Apr. 2024. 240p. ISBN 9781803366647. $22.99. HORROR
LaRocca’s latest collection of stories comes with a warning to readers to check with themselves before, during, and after reading. Rightfully so, as intimate relationships, and the pain, trauma, and violence that often come with them, feature prominently in this volume. Readers will encounter self-harm, child abuse, and shocking scenes of brutality, as claustrophobic settings reveal horrific secrets, weird wounds, macabre obsessions, and a cruel game. On the other hand, readers will also be mesmerized by these stories and their engaging narration, experiencing the full gamut of emotions, from disgust to wonder, held rapt as the illicit lure of the shadowy side of humanity is tantalizingly revealed. Both characters and readers will be pushed to what may appear to be their limit, but in reality, it is only the beginning, the place where the most universal of truths, often obscured by the mundanity of life, can best be observed.
VERDICT LaRocca (Everything the Darkness Eats) is a viral sensation for all the right reasons, showcasing why extreme horror is so resonant, thought-provoking, and necessary. Suggest to fans of Tender Is the Flesh by Agustina Bazterrica and We Are Here To Hurt Each Other by Paula D. Ashe.
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