Book Review: Sacculina by Philip Fracassi | More2Read
 

Sacculina by Philip Fracassi


 

 


Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org

 


 

Praise For Sacculina:

 

“Sacculina is a smart, terrifying, and poignant tale of creeping menace. I devoured it in one frenzied sitting… this Fracassi guy is damn good.”
-Richard Chizmar

“Very scary… lean and nightmarish and uneasy… will definitely be reading more of this guy.”
– Ben Loory

“Trust me, this is intense stuff with some sequences definitely not for the faint-hearted. The pacing here is superb, exciting and frantic.”
– Dark Musings UK

“Philip Fracassi is one of those names that will keep popping up to any fans of modern horror. Not only is he relentless with his output, but every published work seems to be getting better and better…. Sacculina is not only a damned fine yarn but a perfect gateway drug into Philip Fracassi’s fiction.”
– This Is Horror

 


 

Review:

SOS! Coast guard, coast guard, I need a coast guard!
Forget about a movie tonight, spend that 90 minutes with this novella transporting yourself to the wonderful sea on a little voyage, a spot of fishing, an unfathomable sinister one, “the sea whispering sweet songs of death” and tragedy with five men, Henry, Jack and Jim, Chris and Captain Ron.
No just a run of mille horror short, the author added some psychological angles, pains, life’s fallings, and with that character development and history so there is empathy too for these poor guys at sea.
There is a tale of loss embedded, one gone, a parent and partner, via memories and flashbacks an unending bereaving.

I went into this knowing about there being some kind of horrors at sea from the book cover art and the authors general writing themes. That was a good thing, the synopsis I read after reading it gave a lot away and then there is the title, Sacculina does not sound like a pasta dish with some fish, if ones searches what the word means it right there a big spoiler looking at you.
Read the tale first then search it. I did and was happy to find out later.

 


 

Excerpts:

 

“He was young, having just turned sixty, but life had taken a toll on him, and Jim knew he was physically old for his age. Sadness and loss did that to a man—took from him. Took from the inside out, so that by the time you saw the results it was too late to do anything about it. What was done was done. Life was a merciless thief with a black heart, and you hoped it passed you by when scouting for its next victim. Jim knew life had visited their home more than once and didn’t think the old man could take another calling.”

“Afterwards, their father went through the motions of burying his wife, and himself with her in a way. Both boys knew he was lost to them. They could see it in his eyes. Could feel it. Love had run out of stock in the Lowell home, and only a great emptiness remained.”

“Despite the sport and the adrenaline of the moment, Jim couldn’t shake the sudden feeling that they were surrounded, in a menacing way he could not comprehend, by endless water and unknown creatures. In his mind, the boat was nothing more than a dark blob floating in the bright blue sky of the ocean’s underworld, unaware of all that lie beneath, blind to anything that may lay waiting under the surface of this alien landscape, biding its time before striking. A boat like theirs could easily be toppled by a rogue wave, the passengers tossed into the sea, food for the elegant monsters below. In the deep water, they could be killed even by the curious; against intent they’d have no chance at all.”

“The earth was taking the flesh back from beneath, retribution rising, released and hungry, wiggling and mighty and dark, to suck humanity down into the formless primordial stink of pre-existence.”


 

About Philip Fracassi:

Philip Fracassi is an award-winning author and screenwriter.

His debut collection of stories, BEHOLD THE VOID, is available in ebook, paperback, audiobook and hardcover, and was named “Story Collection of the Year (2017)” by THIS IS HORROR.

His stories have appeared in multiple magazines and anthologies, including BEST HORROR OF THE YEAR VOLUME TEN and NIGHTMARE MAGAZINE. His work has been reviewed by The New York Times, Rue Morgue Magazine, LOCUS Magazine and others.

His screenplay credits include “Girl Missing,” distributed by Lifetime Television and “Santa Paws 2: The Santa Pups,” distributed by Disney Entertainment.

Philip lives with his family in Los Angeles, California.

You can follow Philip on Facebook and on Twitter (@philipfracassi), or at his official website at http://pfracassi.com.

 

 



 

Reviewed by Lou Pendergrast on 19 January 2021