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  • ★★★★★-5

Review: Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke by Eric LaRocca (Spoiler-Free)

I almost ate my own hand trying to distract myself from what I was reading. 5 sadomasochistic stars. Obviously. I've been wanting to read this book for over a year, but because it was out-of-print for a while, I had to patiently wait for the re-release. It was worth every second. This story opens as an email chain between two women—one trying to buy an antique apple peeler from the other. The second I turned the page to Part Two and saw this: What have you done today to deserve your eyes? I knew I'd found a new favorite. Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke is a descent into depravity, a collapse into moral decay, and a portrait of desperation. It's twisted and vile, but the last thing you want to do is look away. It explores the violence of motherhood much like Monstrilio and The Push, but also weaves in Bones & All's aching need for connection. The structure and tone also remind me of A House at the Bottom of a Lake, as both stories start as a budding relationship and end with an inescapable obsession. I just picked up a few more of Eric LaRocca's short story collections and I can't wait to dive in.


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