Voracious, by Belicia Rhea

The Book

Pages: 190
Age Group: Adult
Published on 6/18/2024
Publisher: Dark Matter INK
Available on:


A pregnant teenage girl with an eating disorder works to reconcile her visions of a doomsday of insect plagues, and her unique role in what she fears is the impending bug-filled apocalypse.

My Review

Voracious is a deeply unsettling horror novella, written by Belicia Rhea, and which will be published by Dark Matter INK. Sixteen years-old Lila Morales is pregnant, suffering an eating disorder and is tormented by apocalyptic destruction visions, filled by insects; as a consequence, she's in a hypervigilant state, exhausted but paranoic.

She is forced to go into therapy by her mother, putting her in the care of a therapist (Nazareth); hoping Lila opens and starts distinguishing the reality from the hallucinations, and stops being that harbinger of doom, a role that has caused her to close herself to the other people, who refuse to have contact with her. However, Nazareth has her own set of problems, and the sessions with Lila ends unchaining a different set of psychological problems for her.

Rhea has written a really intense novella, which excels at creating unsettling and vivid images that evoke extreme horror; all while threading and analysing different mental states that can be guessed here as a result of toxic masculinity, fear and abuse, provoking a fair rage in the reader. There's also a small layer that resembles religious inspiration, putting also the focus on the damage that enforcing someone's beliefs into others can produce.

I strongly recommend checking the content warnings before diving into this novella, but if you are a fan of splatterpunk or gory horror, you should totally pick Voracious. Rhea's debut into long-form won't be easily forgotten.

The Author/s

Belicia Rhea

Belicia Rhea

Belicia writes horror, weird fiction, and poetry. Much of her writing layers genres and often trails into the realm of the surreal. Her short fiction has been recognized in Library Journal and selected as a semifinalist for the 2023 Kurt Vonnegut Speculative Fiction Prize. Her debut novella Voracious (June 2024) is forthcoming with Dark Matter INK.