Tag Archives: Sea Monster

Top Ten Tuesday: Sea Monster Stories

Hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl

A photograph of a dark portion of the ocean. Something huge is stirring in the water and making waves. It’s too dark in the water to tell what might be churning around down there.I have previously blogged about mermaids, rubber ducks, and wetlands, so it took me a little while to come up with a good spin for this week’s water freebie theme.

Large bodies of water like lakes and the ocean can be beautiful on a calm summer day.

They‘re treacherous during a hurricane or other violent storm.

They can be a safe place to swim, boat, or play.

They’re often a good food source.

What else can they be? Well, depending on what sort of books you read, they might also contain sea monsters. Here are ten titles about that exact scenario.

1. Jaws (Jaws, #1) by Peter Benchley

2. Black Water Horror: A Tale of Terror for the 21st Century : Creature from the Black Lagoon
by Larry Mike Garmon

3. Slime by John Halkin

4. How to Survive a Sharknado and Other Unnatural Disasters: Fight Back When Monsters and Mother Nature Attack by Andrew Shaffer

5. Goliath by Steve Alten

6. Creature from the Black Lagoon by Vargo Statten

7. Zomby Dick or, The Undead Whale by J.D. Livingstone

8. The Origin of the Crabs by Guy N. Smith

9. Orca by Arthur Herzog III

10. Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters by Ben H. Winters

11. The Call of Cthulhu by H.P. Lovecraft




Filed under Blog Hops

Local Legends: A Review of Come in the Water

Book cover for Come in the Weater by K.C. Hastings. image on cover shows the sun setting over a lake. There is a pool of water on the beach and a portion of the sand that shows marks from something heavy being dragged into the water. In the distance, you can see something tentacle-like poking out of the water. Title: Come in the Water

Author: K.C. Hastings

Publisher: Self-Published

Publication Date: October 19, 2020

Genres: Fantasy, Horror, Contemporary

Length: 11 pages

Source: I received a free copy from the author.

Rating: 3 Stars


There’s something in the lake, and I don’t mean the giant catfish.


Content Warning: Murder, drowning, a small amount of blood.

Beware what the locals say. Sometimes they know more than anyone else.

One of the biggest strengths of this short story was how arrogant and yet still likeable the unnamed protagonist was. While I certainly wouldn’t want to live with her, I was intrigued by how certain she was that she had everything figured out. Her confidence was admirable even if it sometimes lead her into some pretty dangerous decisions. It can be easier to write a kind and sweet character than one who had such a major personality flaw, so I tip my cap to the author for pulling this off so nicely.

Given how unfamiliar the main character seemed to be with Oklahoma, I was surprised by how quickly she brushed off the scary legends the locals shared with her in the first scene. I would have understood if she didn’t believe every detail of them, but it struck me as odd for her not to be willing to listen to their warnings at all. If only the narrator had given more clues about why she behaved this way. Even if the string of recent deaths all had natural causes, shouldn’t she at least taken heed of how dangerous swimming could be in that area? I wish this had been explored as it would have gone a long way to provide some additional character and plot development.

The horror elements of the plot were deliciously scary and well done. Even the nicest lakes can feel a little eerie even on a clear sunny day when you stare into their murky depths, and that’s even more true for lakes that have disturbing legends attached to them.

Come in the Water is making me think twice about going swimming in a lake this summer!


Filed under Science Fiction and Fantasy

In the Deep Depths of the Ocean: A Review of Aegan and the Sunken City

Aegan and the Sunken City by D.G. Redd book cover. Image on cover shows an anchor falling through the ocean and about to touch the ocean floor. Title: Aegan and the Sunken City

Author: D.G. Redd

Publisher: Self-Published

Publication Date: January 26, 2021

Genres: Science Fiction, Futuristic

Length: 17 pages

Source: I received a free copy from the author.

Rating: 4 Stars


The Cartographers have announced that the Triton will drift over an old city. Aegan finds himself lucky enough to be ready to drop in his deep-dive submersible, the Argo, and scavenge for riches. If he can collect enough salvage, he can buy his way into the upper-decks, to the levels of peace and quiet. For now though, he’ll need to make do with the solitude of his boat as he slowly descends to the sunken city.


Content Warning: sea monster. I will discuss it in this review.

The ocean is only as trustworthy as who or what is swimming around in it.

Morally ambiguous characters are so interesting to read about, especially when they’re as personable as Aegan was. Would I trust him with my credit card? No, but I would love to sit down to dinner with him and hear some of the stories he could tell about the slippery and sometimes downright illegal things he’s done in order to survive. There is no doubt in my mind that he’d have a few acts of heroism to throw in there as well. He excelled at bending and even breaking the law, but he never struck me as a cruel man. He was simply someone who was trying to game an unfair system in order to make his own life easier.

I would have liked to see more time spent describing the sea monster and it’s intentions. Yes, Aegan was used to such distractions, but this reader was not! It was hard for me to picture what it looked like or why it was so interested in Aegean’s vessel in the first scene. I was also surprised by how the plot veered away after that moment, so having a more detailed description of why the author went in that direction would have been helpful as well. This is a minor criticism of something I otherwise enjoyed quite a bit.

The world building was nicely handled. While the author didn’t have a great deal of time to go into detail, he shared enough information about how global warming changed the sea levels and human society to keep me interested and eager to find out what else had changed between our present and this nebulous time in the future. This is the sort of thing I’m happy to wait around for so long as I have a basic understanding of how e everything works, and that was definitely provided here.

This is part of a series but works perfectly well as a standalone work.

Aegan and the Sunken City piqued my curiosity for more.


Filed under Science Fiction and Fantasy

6 Toronto Urban Legends for Halloween

Since most of the people who read this site don’t live in Toronto and Halloween is my favourite holiday of the year by far, this seemed like the perfect time to share some of our spooky local urban legends.

Blurry photo taken of a moving subway trainThe Lady in Red

Lower Bay subway station was built in 1966 and shut down six months later because the Toronto Transit Commission realized that any delays at that stop would shut down our entire subway system.

A new subway station was built on top of it, and the original one is only rarely available for public viewing.

Legend has it that a woman wearing a red dress wanders around Lower Bay station, but no one knows who she is

. There are no records of accidents that might explain why this spirit spooks TTC employees and the occasional film crew that wander around down there.

We do know that this patch of land was once a Potter’s Field whose coffins were partially cleared out when the city wanted space for public transit, so she might be the ghost of someone who either had no next of kin when she died or who was abandoned by them.

The Underwater UFO Base in Lake Ontario

Multiple people have reported seeing lights shimmering over, plunging into, or leaping out of Lake Ontario. These sightings have given rise to the legend that there is an underwater UFO base located in the bottom of this lake.

Perhaps the aliens come from an aquatic planet and wouldn’t do well out here on dry land?

Nessie Lives in Lake Ontario

You’ve heard of the Loch Ness monster, right?

The Seneca First Nations tribe were the first people to record sightings of our own sea monster. As early as the 1850s, white settlers claimed to see something much bigger than the average fish swimming around in Lake Ontario as well. They described it as a blue-grey serpent that was about 50 feet long.

A Haunting at Old Finch Road

There are many different versions of this tale. They all tend agree that a girl was murdered on Old Finch Road, possibly near a bridge.

Many versions say she died on her birthday and will appear to you if you sing Happy Birthday to her because the person who murdered her wrote “Happy Birthday, Susie” on a nearby rock after killing her. (Although the victim’s name changes quite a bit depending on which version of the story you hear).

Some people have also claimed to hear screams and moans when travelling along this road.

Gibraltar Point Lighthouse on Toronto Island

gibraltar point lighthouse on Toronto Island in Toronto, Ontario

Gibraltar Point Lighthouse

Mr. John Paul Rademuller was the first lighthouse keeper on this little island back when it was still a peninsula. In order to make some extra money, he was a brewer and bootlegger as well.

Legend has it that two drunken sailors came to visit him one day to buy some of his beer. When Rademuller refused to sell it to them, they killed him, dismembered his body, and buried pieces of it around the island.

In some versions of this tale, it is said that parts of him were eventually found but that his head was never recovered at all. Other versions say his ghost still continues to wander the island because his killers were never punished for their crime and not because parts of his skeleton might still be waiting to be found.

Allegedly, there were some bones found near the lighthouse in 1893, but investigators didn’t yet have the scientific tools to tell if they belonged to Mr. Rademuller or not.

Mrs. Jemima Howard’s Last Days

The unique thing about Mrs. Howard is that we have many historical records that document her life. She was the wife of John G. Howard, and they both gave the land that would later become High Park to the city of Toronto after their deaths.

Mr. and Mrs. Howard lived happily in Colborne Lodge for many years. They never had children, but they doted on their nieces and nephews who temporarily came to live with them while  finishing their educations.

Sadly, Jemima Howard was diagnosed with breast cancer long before we had any treatments for it other than morphine and laudanum for her pain. She died at home in her own bed surrounded by loved ones. If she looked out her window, she could see the spot where she (and later her husband) would be buried.

Their headstone is the only one allowed in High Park, and it’s a beautiful, peaceful spot a short distance from their home.

Some visitors to Colborne Lodge have reported seeing a woman peering out of the second story bedroom where Jemima spent her last days. Others have reported cold spots and poltergeist activity.

Maybe Jemima never left home after all.

What is your favourite urban legend from your city, town, or community?


Filed under Personal Life, Science Fiction and Fantasy