Horror Book Review: Derelict by Eric Filler

Horror Book Review

Author: Eric Filler
Publication Date: May 19, 2020
Publisher: Planet 99 Publishing
Genres: Horror

Despite having a dozen of his titles and bundles sitting on my Kobo, and despite him being something of a legend of the genderswap shelves, Derelict is somehow my first Eric Filler read - and I can confidently say it won't be my last.

What attracted me to this was the Bermuda Triangle salvage angle, the idea of a ghost ship full of shipwreck survivors, and the tyranny of a psychotic child named Sybil. Instead of an absurd sex-filled adventure, however, what's between the covers here is a Twilight Zone worthy tale, full of psychological and body horror.

Imagine, if you will, a petulant child from another time, playing games with the lives of those she 'rescues' from the deep. She can reshape your mind and body with a thought - from grown man to toddler, to baby girl - and she enjoys doing so, especially when it causes you such obvious pain. It's a creepy tale, and like the best episodes of the black-and-white classic, there's a moral message to the second half, in which a black soldier from our near future finds himself confronted with peace-loving hippies and early twentieth century racists. 

There's a sense of hopelessness to the tale, a conflict between clinging to a familiar past and trying to make the best of a strange future, but an accidental discovery sparks a war for the souls of all onboard. A well-written, exciting story that surprised me with its narrative strengths.

Rating: ♀ ♀ ♀ ♀


  1. "Twilight Zone worthy" caught my attention, although the cover is a bit on the silly side, I would read this!

    1. Yeah, I think that cover set my expectations for a quickie Sunday Smutday review, but the story was bigger, better, and more solidly SFF.


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