By Mike Griffiths
Phelan, Sapphire. Unwitting Sacrifice. Under the Moon, 2009. $3.50 USD. ISBN: 978-1934153628.
Most of the people who are reading this review are undoubtedly familiar with the concept of Lovecraft’s Deep Ones and their desire to mate with humans. Phelan takes what would be a disgusting proposition for most of us and seeks to transform it into erotica. A sort of Cthulhu-porn, if you will.
In Phelan’s novella, Unwitting Sacrifice, our main character, Lisa, is quickly drawn into the type of secluded, backwards, oceanside town that always worried Mr. Lovecraft so. It soon becomes readily apparent that she has become the chosen one to mate and give birth to the spawn of a creature that no human should ever be forced to witness.
There is no shortage of erotica in this tale, and the deep-water denizen does poor Lisa in enough different ways to make a stripper blush. Add to this all the advantages a body full of rubbery tentacles can bestow and I think your imagination can fill in the rest. Instead of being completely revolted by this foul-smelling, inhuman beast, Lisa finds herself strangely drawn to him.
Many authors have speculated on the underlying sexual themes involved in Lovecraft’s works, but no such speculation is needed here. The sex is aggressive and in your face throughout. I found it hard to determine if it was a horror story with huge chucks of gratuitous sex, or porn giving lip service to the genre. In the end, I’m not sure I wanted to be taken for the ride, pun intended, and viewing a sweet virgin getting raped by a wiggling monster again and again became disturbing, whether she was confused about her ‘feelings’ or not.
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