"Monsters Inside" by Ric Rae
How to describe this book? Absurd, depraved, dark, gritty, bonkers and at times utterly delicious. For the most part, though, it is crude, grotesque and unpleasant. Not that those qualities are enough to put me off or mar my enjoyment of a book in any way (and I do enjoy my horror); though, I do think it is fair to say that sci-fi-horror hybrid Monsters Inside was not really my cup of tea.
This graphic and bizarre novella, told from a multi-person viewpoint, is definitely a book which will polarize reviews. It started off well, and promisingly so, with the tantalizing sequence of a woman murdering the man who raped her, to an eccentric and friendly cannibal living in an underground bunker; I thought, and hoped, it was going the way of Sin City, and supposed that therein was the anthology influence. But, I was a little disappointed at the direction it went in after that, sticking with its two horrid main characters, to tell a simple, brief tale of some of the most deranged individuals, and their collective involvement in a shady government experiment. It all becomes a little inane then, with eyeballs in oranges, copious cum references and crude language, and it does seem as if Rae has gone all out to shock and repulse the reader. Again, hit me with the shock, by all means, but I’m no real fan of the vulgarity.
Overall, I enjoyed reading the book, in spite
of myself; the horror within is good fun.
But, the book is far from serious work, though it is certainly not a
comedy, either; it lurks somewhere in the darkest parts of the space
between. As well as the somewhat enticing
themes of cannibalism, murder and recreational drug use, it does contain
several references to rape and sexual assault, so it is not to be taken light-heartedly. It is a somewhat brief tale, which seems to
wrap up pretty quickly, without becoming too deeply involved. A fun read, sure. High-brow?
Of course not. Monsters Inside
is clearly a sardonic, cynical satire on the more dumbed-down aspects of modern
life, and I understand that Rae was presenting some degree of profound moral
message at the end, but I must be truly honest: I don’t know what it was. If you like short, gross-out horror reads,
give it a go; everyone else, perhaps not.
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In : Book Reviews
Tags: ric-rae sci-fi horror violent