Short Story Review: Consumption by Michael Patrick Hicks

cover for consumption
© Michael Patrick Hicks, 2014.


You Are

Reclusive chef Heinrich Schauer has invited six guests to a blind twelve-course tasting menu.

What You Eat

While snow blankets the isolated Swiss valley surrounding his estate, the guests feast eagerly, challenging one another to guess at the secret tastes plated before them.

Meat Is Murder

As they eat, each guest is overtaken by carnal appetites, unaware of their host’s savage plans…or of the creature lurking below.

One thing is clear: There is more on the menu than any of them have bargained for.

Consumption is a 12,000 word (approx.) short story. It contains graphic depictions of sex and violence, and is intended for mature audiences.” (Source: Goodreads)


Consumption is the second work I’ve read by Michael Patrick Hicks (whose first work I reviewed yesterday), and I really dig his style. Despite this tale being a few years old, Hicks proves once more to be a master of gore – sating my most primal needs for horror. In this short story, he adds to that an element of Lovecraftian horror, thus crafting the perfect entree for a quick, fun read.

Chef Heinrich Schauer is a twisted man, one that has succeeded in blinding himself into believing that he is granting his guests a boon in the form of a tasting event for his food. I can’t help but admit that here, Hicks both repulsed me and tempted my taste buds in the same breath. His ability to describe food, no matter what it actually is, is delectable.

Consumption gives readers just enough of a background to its cast to make them seem real, and for that I’m grateful. It’s not too much exposition, nor is it too little. Instead, readers are able to easily recognize each character’s personality and thus feel at least some emotion in regards to the events that transpire.

Once again, I’m delighted by Hicks’s style of writing and after these two reads, I definitely look forward to even more. This short story was included as a bonus in Mass Hysteria, so I decided to review it of my own free will. This is an unbiased review.

Rating: 💀💀💀💀

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