We Can Never Leave This Place is a horror novella by Eric LaRocca. LaRocca returns with another disturbing and jarring story about a girl in a situation you can’t even imagine.
All quotes are from an advanced reader copy, and may or may not reflect the published edition.
“When you’re given a gift, something else gets taken away.”
A precocious young girl with an unusual imagination is sent on an odyssey into the depths of depravity. After her father dies violently, young Mara is surprised to find her mother welcoming a new guest into their home, claiming that he will protect them from the world of devastation and destruction outside their door.
A grotesque and thrilling dark fantasy, We Can Never Leave This Place is a harrowing portrait of inherited grief and familial trauma.
Characters: 8 | Atmosphere: 10 | Writing: 9 | Plot: 8 | Intrigue: 8 | Logic: 6 | Enjoyment: 9
“If you hold on to a rope long enough, it’ll pull you with it. I’ve been holding on to one my whole life.”
Eric LaRocca has once again written a novella to “bug” all my friends with…pun intended. Much like in “Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke”, this book makes you wonder – where is this going? And when you get there, everything clicks into place in the most horrifying way. There is a way of bringing horror into a crescendo of terror and LaRocca has a knack for it. This book is no exception to that.
“She’s a storyteller.”
“Just another word for ‘liar,’” my mother said, folding her arms.
The writing in this is quick-paced, blink and you might miss it. There is a level of understanding of the dystopian world that’s been built out without ever directly explaining itself, which is genuinely a level of writing expertise I praise highly. The characters are presented in ways that make you think, in levels beyond just the horror aspect. With conversations about generational trauma, and what happens when secrets stay locked in one home. All of this within a horror novella while still scaring the hell out of you is what this book brings to the table.
“I wanted to be the only one to hurt you.”
The things that occur in this book are jarring, causing one to feel tense during the entire experience. As one gets to the ending, there is a moment of feeling pleased but also shocked at everything that’s occurred. Horror is a difficult genre to review, as you never want to spoil the story, and so my review may feel somewhat short- but trust me, if you like horror, this is one worth checking out. Much like Eric’s other works, I would absolutely recommend reading the content and trigger warnings that other reviewers have provided.
“From baby teeth to virginity, to live is to regularly suffer loss.”
Thank you to the author for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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