Title: Black Site | Author: Michael Patrick Hicks | Pub. Date: 2017-5-9 | Pages: 84 | ASIN: B071F2V7KX | Genre: Sci-Fi Horror | Language: English | Triggers: None | Rating: 4 out of 5 | Source: Self-Purchased |
For fans of H.P. Lovecraft and Alien comes a new work of cosmic terror!
Inside an abandoned mining station, in the depths of space, a team of scientists are seeking to unravel the secrets of humanity’s origin. Using cutting-edge genetic cloning experiments, their discoveries take them down an unimaginable and frightening path as their latest creation proves to be far more than they had bargained for.
Black Site is a short story of approximately 10,000 words.
Black Site Review
Black Site is a little hard to define. It’s a science fiction short story in which horrible things happen, and there’s a touch of horror, but I have trouble saying it’s a sci-fi horror. Instead it feels more like a thought exercise regarding the dangers inherent in looking for the answer to life’s mysteries. It also raises some questions about clone behavior and genetic tampering amongst as well.
The plot of Black Site alone was fascinating. I don’t think I’ve ever read another book or short story with a variation on this particular plot. One of those times when you just have to kind of sit back and wonder how in the world the author thought of it. He works the Lovecraft elements in well, but it’s the science fiction side of the story that is the most appealing.
I wanted to like Black Site more than I did. I feel like it was just too short, though, and that worked against the story. I wanted to get involved in what was going on. I felt like it could have been a trippy read that mentally stimulated me and kept me wondering, but it didn’t. Instead, because things moved so quickly, I didn’t have time to really get invested in what was going on. Or have time to wonder about what was happening. There was also a section regarding Victor’s ‘origins’ that didn’t sell to me because it needed spun out a bit more.
Black Site is well-written, regardless of the length issues. I would like to see this as a sci-fi video short. It has that kind of feel, where a visual representation would be fantastic to see. I have a feeling this want of mine started when I saw the cover reveal for the book. The cover for Black Site is the whole reason I got it. It made me perk up and go “Ooh”. I’m not often one of those people that will buy a book based on cover alone, but this one totally got me.
This was difficult to rate. The true rating came out to about a 3.5 (and I know from looking at Goodreads that I’m in the minority with that opinion). Maybe I just wasn’t in the right mood that weekend to read Black Site. Who knows. But, since I don’t rate in halves, I rounded up to a 4 because of the fact that it looked professionally edited, was well-written even if it didn’t grab me, and had that completely awesome cover.
Full disclosure, folks: While I did purchase this book with my own money, and no prompting from the author, I do interact with the author regularly. He is part of Sci-Fi & Scary’s monthly book discussions.