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Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  345 ratings  ·  148 reviews
Sadomasochism. Obsession. Death.

A whirlpool of darkness churns at the heart of a macabre ballet between two lonely young women in an internet chat room in the early 2000s—a darkness that threatens to forever transform them once they finally succumb to their most horrific desires.

What have you done today to deserve your eyes?
Kindle Edition, 1st Edition, 102 pages
Published June 1st 2021 by Weirdpunk Books
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Average rating 4.15  · 
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Sadie Hartmann
May 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: litreactor
Review originally published at LitReactor:

I decided to write this review in the style of one of my personal favorite tools of the trade, NoveList Plus powered by EBSCO. NoveList Plus is a huge database of book recommendations serving as a resource and guide for library workers. Patrons of most local public libraries can access this database through each public library's website using a personal library card.

I use this database all the time. The recommendat
Janie C.
Jun 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This is an ominous and psychologically horrifying story by a very talented author. Eric LaRocca carves his characters sharply enough to cut through skin and emotion, leaving us breathtless as events unfold between two strangers. One is trusting and vulnerable, while the other has a blood red mean streak. Their completely online relationship is disturbing and impossible to look away from. If you are searching for a well-written and compelling story of manipulation and gullibility, this is your bo ...more
Richard Martin
Jun 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Told as a series of e-mail exchanges and instant messages between two women, being shared as part of an ongoing police investigation, ‘Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke’ is a disturbing descent into the minds of a master manipulator and someone who is struggling to find their place and is desperate to find somewhere they belong.

Set in the year 2000, when the internet was still burgeoning and social media was a thing of the future, there is still a lot about the online aspect of this s
Ross Jeffery
Apr 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
‘Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke is a masterpiece of disturbing fiction, utterly beguiling and beautifully horrific. Eric LaRocca is one of the brightest minds writing horror today!’

This is the emergence of a masterful storyteller and a book that is destined for greatness - don’t sleep on this book, you need it in your life, believe the hype! This book will haunt you long after reading... you’ve been warned!

Watch my full review here -

If this book doesn
Cassie Daley
I don't even have words right now, holy shit.

Read this book. Go into it with no expectations, just enjoy the ride.

Full review eventually once I pick my brain up off the floor.
Ben Long
May 25, 2021 rated it it was amazing
What have you done today to deserve your eyes?

Eric LaRocca has a way with words that I find disturbing, enthralling, and endlessly enjoyable to read. He's easily an auto-buy author for me, and he's just getting started!

With this story Eric turns his talents to the epistolary form; a medium that is underutilized, likely because it's so hard to get right. I mean how well can one create complex characters, inspire awe and dread in the reader, and convey a full range of emotions only through written
Janelle Janson
Jun 02, 2021 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Justin Lewis
May 31, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A tale of longing and control, THINGS HAVE GOTTEN WORSE SINCE WE LAST SPOKE is unlike anything I've ever read. It's desperate and unsettling in the best way. It's not long and I don't want to spoil anything, so I'm going to keep it short.

Agnes decided she wants to sell an antique apple peeler that's been in her family for generations and lists it on an online queer community board. There she connects with Zoe who has a family member that would love the peeler and its history. The two hit it off
Eric Raglin
Apr 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Note: I received a free digital ARC of this book from Eric LaRocca.

Some authors write books that demand to be read in one sitting. Eric LaRocca is absolutely one of those authors. When Starving Ghosts in Every Thread came out, I devoured it in an afternoon. The same was true for A Bright Enchanted Suffering, which kept me turning pages until the very end. But Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke is LaRocca's most un-putdownable book yet.

The novella starts with an email exchange about buy
Kelly| Just Another Horror Reader
I saw people raving about this novella all over the place before it was released and I knew I had to read it. Did it live up to the hype? Yes, It absolutely did! I don’t know how the author came up with the idea for this story but kudos to him. He did a stellar job with it. Once I started reading it I couldn’t put it down.

it’s about the relationship between two women, Zoe and Agnes, and it’s told in a series of emails and instant messages. It starts out with Agnes trying to find an online buyer
May 14, 2021 rated it it was amazing
So this was an entirely new experience for me. I went into this novella without knowing anything. Well, I knew that all of my friends were loving it, but I had no idea what to expect from the story. I read this easily in a single sitting and then just sat there at the end, trying to digest what I had just read.

I love epistolary stories. And I love horror. This novella combines the two in a unique way that totally took me by surprise. OK, so I just sat here struggling because I don't want this r
Part Dennis Cooper's The Sluts, part David Cronenberg's The Brood...Eric LaRocca's Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke is a masterpiece of epistolary body horror. ...more
Bianca (Belladonnabooks)
Favourite novella this year so far!! I am mind-blown. Do yourself a favor and pre-order this! It’s the kind of story you’re best knowing little about before you go into it because the less you know the more crazy and wild your reading experience will likely be.

All I will say about the synopsis is it centres around the internet and the potential it has to connect individuals, which is not always positive. This is a dark and disturbing book due to its ability to make you question the what if’s. C
"I’d like to dedicate this book to anybody who has gone searching for something, someone in the glittering darkness of cyberspace just to feel a little less lonely. Perhaps you found something truly wondrous. Perhaps you didn’t."
This is all you're getting from me in regards to this story's synopsis. I went in blind and I highly recommend it. It's so much more fun that way!

Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke is a quick and disturbing read, approx 100 pages, with an epistola
Vin - Queerbiblioboy
Jun 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke is a gut twisting, nauseating and depressing novella that focuses on the emails/instant messages between two women who found each other over an apple peeler.

The story kicks off with an odd listing of trying to sell an apple peeler that belongs to one of the main characters, Agnes. Our second main character, Zoe comes into the story after seeing the listing for the peeler and wants to buy it for her grandfather.

What starts out as something so innocen
Michael James
Jun 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Great short read. Really messed up story about control and manipulation. Great style of writing.
Ali Seay
Jun 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So f*cked up and clever and horrible. I loved it. A fast, relentless read. Not for the faint of heart.
Alex | | findingmontauk1
May 09, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle-books, owned
I've been staring off into space and just pacing around from room to room since I finished THINGS HAVE GOTTEN WORSE SINCE WE LAST SPOKE. I am not okay. WOW! Eric LaRocca totally crushes and owns life with this novella --- it is full of anguish, depravity, addiction, heart, control, and oh my gosh I just cannot even begin to explain just how powerful this story is! And I just love an epistolary novel. I can read anything in the form of letters, IM conversations, forums, transcripts, etc. There's ...more
May 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing

🏳️‍🌈 This novella knocked it out of the park for me. It had all the elements that I love packed into a pretty straight forward LGBTQ+ story.

🖥️ It is about two women who meet online and the strange relationship they build with each other. This is set in the late 90s/early 00s so way before internet dating was really popular. The format of this novella is brilliant--it's all emails and instant messages between the two w
J.A. Sullivan
May 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2021-reads
If you’re reading this, you’re probably plugged into the virtual world, connecting with people across the globe, and perhaps even building relationships online. But how well can you really know the person on the other side of the screen? How much of yourself do you reveal on the internet? This is just one of the themes Eric LaRocca explores in his phenomenal novella Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke.

As detailed in the fictitious “Author’s Note” at the beginning of the book, the entire
May 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
𝓦𝓱𝓪𝓽 𝓱𝓪𝓿𝓮 𝔂𝓸𝓾 𝓭𝓸𝓷𝓮 𝓽𝓸𝓭𝓪𝔂 𝓽𝓸 𝓭𝓮𝓼𝓮𝓻𝓿𝓮 𝔂𝓸𝓾𝓻 𝓮𝔂𝓮𝓼?

Well! LaRocca is at it again!
I tell you, everytime this guy releases a new piece, I think "there's no way it's better then the last, not possible, can't be, that last piece was a masterpiece".
Well holy SHIT I couldn't be more wrong.

Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke is incredibly disturbing, absolutely twisted.

Since this piece is a short story so easily consumed, I won't talk much about the concept of the story, ill let the synopsis spea
Brittany (bees.horror.haunts)

This is hands down my favourite novella of the year.

It all starts with a listing for an apple peeler on an LGBTQ+ forum.

Agnes is selling her grandmother’s apple peeler because she needs money for rent. But, because this item is so close to her heart, she’s unwilling to sell it to just anyone. Enter Zoe.

Agnes and Zoe’s relationship begins to blossom rather quickly with emails, and instant messages being exchanged daily. We start to see that
Marcy Reads on IG
May 14, 2021 rated it it was amazing
UUUMMM! I don’t even know what to say other than WOW!
Alex Khlopenko
May 10, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Also available at Three Crows Magazine

This novella can be read in one sitting and it should be read in one sitting. Though it’s understandable if you would need to take a break from this epistolary tale of intoxicating obsession and an apple peeler with a vibrant history.

Agnes, a young woman who was exiled from her family, tries to sell her grandmother’s peeler to make ends meet and pay for rent in an online queer community board. Her post attracts Zoe who quickly forms a bond with Agnes. Their
Octavia (ReadsWithDogs)
I read THINGS HAVE GOTTEN WORSE SINCE WE LAST SPOKE yesterday and I've been trying to compose my thoughts for it since.😵‍💫⁣⁣⁣
"I feel like some shapeless cosmic belt, as if the hand of some invisible deity were cradling me in his arms."⁣⁣⁣
Remember those early internet days of Instant Messenger and chatrooms? When you could easily connect with someone anywhere in the world and get wrapped up in conversation about nothing and 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘺𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘨? And then suddenly you're both spilling your guts
Jun 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
What have you done today to deserve your eyes?

I’m much like the girl on the cover right now. My brain exploded. Please excuse me while I go and clean up.
Jun 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror, 2021
The fuck?! <- That’s it. That’s all I’ve got.
May 16, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: gifted, ebook
"What have you done today to deserve your eyes?"

Set in the early 2000's, this is the story of Agnes and Zoe, who meet online and start falling in love with each other. But their relationship is far from being normal and, email after email, things escalate quickly and in a very unexpected way.

I went into this horror novella knowing almost nothing about it and... WOW. I absolutely loved it!
Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke starts off in a very innocent and sweet way: a woman wishes to s
May 31, 2021 rated it really liked it
Jesus fucking Christ.
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Eric LaRocca’s horror fiction has appeared in various literary journals and anthologies in the US and abroad such as Stiff Things and Year’s Best Hardcore Horror, Volume 2. He is also the author of several plays which have been developed and produced at theaters across the country including Love Creek Productions (NYC) and Hartford Stage (Hartford, CT). His debut novella, Starving Ghosts in Every ...more

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