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Blood, Sweat, and Fears

“So horrifying, and yet so plausible. As an author who has written a book about a giant sea creature, I take my hat off to Neal—this guy takes us all to school in showing what it would be like to be trapped somewhere remote by something with a monstrous size, appetite and intelligence.”

—Greig Beck, author, Goodreads review

Four leisure travelers boat their way to Palmer Atoll, deep in the inky heart of the Pacific Ocean, hell and gone from anywhere, not guessing that they have stumbled upon the lair of something ancient and terrible. It watches them from the tropical waters, a lurking evil with an endless appetite: a monstrous, many-armed thing, a species of a bygone age with a golden gaze. Set in an exotic, remote island purgatory-paradise, “Relict” is a hybrid horror novella that grips you tightly in its clutches and won’t let you go.


Born in Missouri, growing up in Ohio, and settling in Chicago, D. T. Neal has always written fiction, but only got really serious about it in the late 90s. He brings a strong Rust Belt perspective to his writing, a kind of “Northern Gothic” aesthetic reflective of his background.

Writing his first novel at 29, he then devoted time to his craft and worked on short stories, occupying a space between genre and literary fiction, with an emphasis on horror, science fiction, and fantasy. He has seen some of his short stories published in “Albedo 1,” Ireland’s premier magazine of speculative fiction, and he won second place in their Aeon Award in 2008 for his short story, “Aegis.” He has lived in Chicago since 1993, and is a passionate fan of music, a student of pop culture, an avid photographer and bicycler, and enjoys cooking.

He has published six novels, Saamaanthaa, The Happening, and Norm—collectively known as The Wolfshadow Trilogy—Chosen, Suckage, the cosmic folk horror-comedy thriller, The Cursed Earth. He has also published three novellas—Relict, Summerville, and The Day of the Nightfish.

He co-edited THE FIENDS IN THE FURROWS folk horror anthologies, The Fiends in the Furrows: An Anthology of Folk Horror, The Fiends in the Furrows II: More Tales of Folk Horror, and The Fiends in the Furrows III: Final Harvest.


• 2008 Aeon Award, Second Place for “Aegis”
• 2009 Honorable Mention, “Best Horror of the Year,” edited by Ellen Datlow for “Aegis” and “Rotgut.”
• Runner-up, 2013 Best New Novel by a Chicagoan, Chicago Reader, for “Suckage”
• Shortlisted for the 2012 Aeon Award for “Day of the Nightfish.”


  • Paperback: 110 pages (Novella)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-13: 978-1482741872

November 8, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition