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The Sadist’s Bible – a novella by Nicole Cushing.

Fans of Clive Barker’s orgasms-among-the-offal approach to sex and horror will appreciate this novella by Nicole Cushing. She’s managed to pack some big themes and questions into a compact book, though that does make it a little difficult to discuss without giving the game away.

The Sadist's Bible book cover

It opens with two women both desperate in their own way to find a way out of their suffering, who make a pact to suicide together. That would be horror enough for some authors but Nicole just keeps pouring it on. It’s not just horror for the sake of it though and as the tale develops, we get an interesting take on the nature of divinity, heaven and hell. To quote “a force that even suicide may not allow her to escape. A force that wants Lori, Ellie, and all of humanity broken and brought to its knees.”

There are some moments in the book that not all readers will appreciate given the theme of sexual aggression – we’re not talking the well mannered bdsm scene here – but if that’s not your bag, you’re unlikely to pick up a book with such a title anyway. For those who do choose to wade in, there is a point to its inclusion with the formation and transformation of the characters.

As the women journey toward their first and final meeting, they are each tormented by their own demons – literal and figurative. I’m interested to see how these and other themes are expanded upon in Nicole’s future work. If you’re curious too, visit Nicole’s website where you can find details of her other books, upcoming signings and more from the author herself.

Karen is a full time artist living in Whitby (perfect location for a horror fan). Her own monsters have taken over to the point where they actually have their own closet space and so she takes refuge in books and films, some of which she’d like to share with you.

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