Short Story Review: “The Substance in the Sound” by W. B. Stickel

2 of 5 stars.

This fish story starts off like many an overshared video on Facebook, a strange substance, or unknown creature, is spotted by fishermen who then try to figure out what they’ve stumbled upon. From there, Lovecraft mythos backdoors into the tale firmly rooting the story in the supernatural, albeit vaguely.

The strong beginning sees a father-son fishing duo off the coast of Boston encounter a large gelatinous mass floating in the open ocean. They scoop a bucket of sample and take it to a family friend, a professor of ocean biology. Inconclusive tests send the trio of men back out into the depths the next day for the sake of research.

The scientist has a murky tie to the Innsmouth history of Lovecraft lore. Even when the scientist’s POV takes over, this plot twist remains needlessly vague.

This tale appears in Whispers from the Abyss edited by Kat Rocha. I received this new anthology directly from 01 Publishing through
[Check out my other reviews here.]


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