Low Red Moon Mass Market Paperback – Aug 7 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
More conventional than Threshold (2001), Kiernan's atmospheric tale of cosmic terror, this horror thriller brings back psychic sensitive Deacon Silvey and paleontologist Chance Matthews, now married and expecting their first child. Deke reluctantly applies his psychometric skills at a crime scene and has a vision of an inhuman killer. About the same time, Chance begins hallucinating bleeding stigmata. The ominous significance of these portents come as no surprise to the reader, who has already been introduced, through intercut scenes, to serial murderess Narcissa Snow, a woman of seemingly supernatural pedigree who has fixated on Deke and Chance's unborn child as a blood offering to her gods. The novel unfolds in fast-paced chase sequences, first with Narcissa cutting a bloody swath to the Silvey home, and then with Deke pursuing Narcissa after she's abducted Chance to the place of sacrifice. The author tends to overdo the talk and action, though fortunately not at the expense of her effective evocations of the supernatural. Narcissa is a creature "snared between the unseeing world of men and the unseen world of monsters," and as she pulls characters into her sphere, they experience unsettling glimpses of horrors that lurk just beyond the borders of the ordinary. Vividly described, these moments give the novel unusual power, and make it a memorable expansion of the author's unique fictional universe.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
“A gift for language that borders on the scary.” —Neil GaimanSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Deacon is an ex-alcoholic, trying to start a new life with Chance, his very pregnant young wife. When he seeks help with the dark visions that have begun to plague him, death follows his trail. Chance is a practical woman and a scientist - a paleontologist. She barely believes in her husbands powers and now finds she is having visions of her own. She is torn between her own bloody nightmares and her fears that Deacon will succumb to his own demons. A deep wedge is being driven between them and only catastrophe can follow.
My first encounter with Caitlen Kiernan was Silk, her freshman novel. While chilling and interesting in its own right, Silk pales beside Low Red Moon, Kiernan's third. The events of this novel would be terrifying on their own, but Kiernan has learned to blend subconscious fears and a modern mythology with echoes of Lovecraft into a concoction as suspenseful and doom-filled as anything I've read in years.
Dream and reality crisscross in splashes of blood, characters refuse to follow any stereotype, and the Southern gothic horror story gets an infusion of new ideas. Kiernan displays a command of language that transcends her chosen genre. The reader, of course, is the beneficiary, nose buried in a book that is both too chilling to read and impossible to put down. If this is your introduction to Kiernan, brace yourself, you will soon be hunting up everything she has written.
But Narcissa, arrested adolescent that she is, wants to be in with this ghoulish in crowd (they apparently are headquartered in a strange house in Providence) and so she sets off Southward to Birmingham on a killing spree (all the while listening in her head to the voices of the people she killed), and an attempt to steal the baby of eight-month-pregnant Chance, from "Threshold," who's now married to recovering alcoholic Deacon Silvey. Narcissa wants to give the baby over to the in crowd as a ticket of admission. After many surprises, the chilling finale takes place back north in Lovecraft country as the sun sets and that low red moon rises on Halloween Night, 2001 a night when, as Ms. Kiernan assures us in her note in the front, the moon actually was full.
The author expertly blends standard slasheriana (Don't go out for a cigarette, Alice! Why isn't there a police car at the rear entrance? Will you just hear the guy out before punching him in the nose, Deacon? A dark and stormy night? Oh oh!) with her own unique visions and her intoxicating prose style (she writes of "old-fashioned lampposts along the street, gaslights with electric hearts") and brews up something rich and strange, fresh and piquant. She knows the concoction calls for certain required elements, but her garnishments are what make the difference. Its flavor will leave you spellbound.Read more ›
It's interesting to watch an author learn and develop skills. Kiernan's writing has improved dramatically since her first published novel, Silk; there are still shiny stylistic twists, but there's also a solid, high-tension plot (better paced than Threshold) and well-realized, believable characters.
Many things are well done here: the sentence-level writing, the way the dark secrets hidden at the book's center are revealed just enough to make sense, but not enough to lose their effect. Narcissa, the "villain", is a complex character in her own right. The story's resolution will not please readers who want happy endings, but I liked it.
I wanted more of the paleontology, wanted it worked into the story (which it is in Threshold more than in this book) rather than just being a character trait - it's interesting, original and has lots of horror potential.
It's really good to know that someone is writing intelligent, stylish New Horror. I recommend this book.
LOW RED MOON is no exception. It is a superior work. In a line of great works it is her best to date.
Chance and Deacon Silvey are married with a baby on the way. Chance is a paleontologist who works hard to keep her life grounded in reality. Deacon is an ex-alcoholic grounded in nothing more than survival and struggling to build a foundation with Chance. Deacon is troubled by migraine-inducing visions he doesn't want that seem to help everyone but himself. Chance has chosen to distance herself completely from this, to believe these visions are no more than a product of Deacon's self-induced afflictions or something else equally easily explainable. Until she begins to experience hallucinations of her own. This alone gives the novel plenty of room for character exploration. The interaction between these two and a small host of minor characters crackles with intensity.
But the pivot of the novel is Narcissa Snow. A someone, or more precisely some *thing,* hunting them with a personal agenda that makes the marriage growing pains seem trivial by comparison. Narcissa is a well developed evil that appears to be unstoppable. And if you have read any of Ms. Kiernan's works you know nothing is guaranteed and the price for survival is high.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
I've been an avid reader of Caitlin Kiernan's work since her first novel SILK, but LOW RED MOON surpasses everything she's done previously. Read morePublished on March 2 2004 by Sara Lockheart
C R. K's sentences wiggle into your brain like big juicy worms through rich soil. There are images within LRM that gnaw with sharp teeth. Read morePublished on Dec 1 2003 by TEC
I tried to take my time and savor this book. The writing is lucid and streamlined, easier to get lost in than some of Caitlin's other writing (for whatever that's worth). Read morePublished on Nov. 23 2003
Low Red Moon shows us a writer at the top of her game. Caitlin Kiernan has written consistently high quality books, but here she surpasses all expectation. Read morePublished on Nov. 16 2003 by christian praxis
Bone, gristle and blood. That is all that Ms. Kiernan has put into this book. Which is why you should eagerly pour your hard-earned into it as soon as inhumanly possible. Read morePublished on Nov. 11 2003 by dethbird
Caitlin R. Kiernan is a writer whose gift of words often leaves me breathless in both wonder of her skill and envious hope that I could one day possess even half of her poetic... Read morePublished on Nov. 9 2003 by David Lemoine
I think this book is amazing. I couldn't have imagined a better sequel to Threshold, even though the ending left me feeling unsettled, which is good. Read morePublished on Nov. 9 2003 by Hayley Huston
He's a gifted psychic who gave the police the break they needed to find Mary English, a serial killer who killed fourteen children. Read morePublished on Nov. 7 2003 by Harriet Klausner