REVIEW: “Satanic Panic” by Mike Thorn

Review of Mike Thorn, “Satanic Panic”, Darkest Hours (Unnerving, 2017): 202-212 — Purchase here. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman. (Read the review of the anthology).

Content note: Cruelty to animals.

Satanic panic has swept Jarad Cross’s hometown, and when the neighborhood pets start being brutalized, all “the God-fearing cops” (p. 204) knew exactly where to turn their suspicion: To someone who met all the purported requirements of a Satanist, Jarad himself. But Jarad is no Satanist, and he “loved animals a lot more than he loved all the judgmental fuckers populating this bum-ass town” (p. 205).

With this story, there are two options where you can locate the horror: If Jarad is innocent, then who or what is the unknown Satanist that is torturing and killing the animals? Alternatively, if Jarad is innocent, then how can he fight against the panic, when neither fact nor reason will carry any weight? What is scarier, the Satanism or the Satanic panic? I know where my answer lies, but will encourage people to read the story and decide for themselves.

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