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review 2016-09-25 11:05
The Rain Dancers - Greg F. Gifune (It was a dark and stormy night)
The Rain Dancers - Greg F. Gifune

 

 

 

Will and Betty have returned to Betty's childhood home to prepare her deceased father's house to sell. During a heavy rainstorm, an elderly man, Bob Laurent, turns up on their doorstep claiming to be a good friend of Betty's father. Whilst she doesn't remember Bob, they invite him in and listen to him reminiscing about her father. Will begins to feel uncomfortable with the man, especially his over familiarity with Betty and his strange attitude towards Will. As the night progresses the old man will bring up childhood memories that Betty has tried hard to suppress and Will learns some horrifying truths about his wife's small town life.
This was one creepy, atmospheric read. Pretty much as soon as Bob shows up the tension starts and is slowly ratcheted up as his true persona is revealed. Bob made my skin crawl and his scenes with Will are especially nerve shredding.
With the other characters, Will is well written and I felt I got to know him more than Betty whom I think the author left a bit more blank for maximum shock value once all is revealed.
Pacing was excellent and it's definitely something you'll want to read all in one sitting. The author's usual ambiguity is missing in this novella and it's a welcome change not to wonder if you've got the story worked out right.
Well written, engaging novella that has one of the most evil antagonists I've come across in a while.
Recommended.

 

7/25

 

Complete:

 

Read by candlelight or flashlight: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets - J.K Rowling

Magical Realism:

Witches:

Genre: Horror:

Black Cat:

Diverse Authors can be Spooky Fun: Poisoning Eros - Wrath James White

Ghost Stories and Haunted Houses:

Young Adult Horror:

Scary Women (Authors):

Reads with (Booklikes) Friends:

Grave or Graveyard: Graveyard Blues - Reina Salt

Genre: Mystery:

Free Square:

Gothic:

Creepy Crawlies:

'Fall' into a good book: Falling Angel - William Hjortsberg

Locked Room Mystery:

It was a dark and stormy night: The Rain Dancers - Greg F. Gifune

Set in New England:

Full Moon:

Vampires vs. Werewolves: Written in Red - Anne Bishop

Supernatural:

Classic Horror: The Monkey's Paw - W.W. Jacobs

Pumpkin:

Set on Halloween:

 

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review 2016-01-25 22:19
The Rain Dancers - Greg Gifune
The Rain Dancers - Greg F. Gifune

Will returns with Betty to attend his father-in-law's funeral and settle his estate. While staying at the house on a rainy night, a stranger arrives claiming to be an old friend of Betty and her dad. Although Betty has no recollection of Ed, they let the elderly gentleman in and she soon becomes enchanted by his stories of her and her dad from when she was young. Will, feeling like the left out stranger, finds it strange that this man knows so much about his wife and yet she doesn't remember anything about him. Even more strange is how comfortable she becomes with him, a trait he has never seen her display in 20 years of marriage. Is he being paranoid or is there more to Ed that meets the eye?

 

The Rain Dancers is a great tale by Gifune. The man knows psychological horror better than about any other author out there. He paints an amazingly uncomfortable setting that you keep putting yourself in Will's place and asking yourself, "What would I do if I were in his shoes?" As the story unfolds, the tension ratchets up to point where it almost feels hallucinating. This is Gifune at his best. Highly recommended.

 

5 rain soaked strangers out of 5


You can also follow my reviews at the following links:

 

https://kenmckinley.wordpress.com

https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/5919799-ken-mckinley

http://www.amazon.com/gp/profile/A2J1JOKW56F2YT

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review 2015-05-07 03:18
(Review) The Rain Dancers
The Rain Dancers - Greg F. Gifune

Synopsis - 

 

He arrives in darkness, in the middle of a violent downpour...an affable old man with tales to tell... 

When Will and Betty Colby return to Betty's hometown to settle her late father's affairs and prepare his house for sale, they assume they'll be faced with some cleaning, basic repairs and making runs to the local dump. Will also hopes it will afford Betty a chance to reflect on the difficult relationship she had with her father. But something more is happening in this quiet little town, in this dark old house at the end of this seemingly deserted dirt road. 

In the middle of a rainstorm, a man calling himself Bob Laurent appears in the night on their doorstep, claiming to be an old family friend. He seems harmless enough, only Betty has no memory of him. Yet he knows everything about her, her father and their lives. He even knows intimate details about Will and his life. While the storm rages on, a cauldron of tension, suspicion and fear builds between the couple and the stranger, dragging Will and Betty to the very brink of madness. 

A vile and unrelenting evil has returned to claim what was taken from it long ago, and all the demons of the past, present and probable future have come home to roost. Before the storm clears and the sun rises, Will and Betty Colby will come to know the horrifying truth. 

People live and die...but the evil they do is eternal.
 

 

Review - 

 

Wow.

It absolutely floors me just how good of a writer Greg Gifune is. Why I have waited so long to read a title by Greg Gifune is beyond my comprehension. The writing in Rain Dancers makes me feel like I am there, inside the story, inside the house, and on the yard. Nothing is left to the imagination and that is perfect in this case. Laurent is a scary character. Greg writes him like a nightmare come to life. Will and Betty are fleshed out perfectly. 
I can not wait to pick up my next title by Greg. If you are a fan of horror and haven't read him, you should correct that. You will be happy you did.
 

 

 

Pick up a copy here.

 

 
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review 2015-03-27 00:00
The Rain Dancers
The Rain Dancers - Greg F. Gifune Will and Betty have arrived at her late father Earle’s house to arrange for the property to be cleared and the contents sorted prior to its imminent sale. As they set about the sad task and as Betty reacquaints herself with her childhood there is a knock at the door......After a slight hesitation, I opened the door. “Come in.”..."Much obliged.” He stepped inside, bringing a gust of wind and a spray of rain with him. “Great Gosh Almighty, nasty night out there, isn’t it?”..."Quite a rain,” I said. He made sure the storm door closed and latched behind him. “Apologize for showing up announced like this,” he said, “but when I heard Earl had passed I felt it only right to stop in and pay you and your lovely bride my respects.”

Thus the reader is introduced to the deeply disturbed, overtly friendly and thoroughly evil “good ole southern boy” Bob Laurent. Greg F Gifune has done a wonderful job of introducing a seemingly harmless, friendly stranger and yet from the moment we meet him his evil intent is apparent. “The inexplicable fear I’d initially felt had subsided, but in its wake was an equally baffling sense of unease.” It is this growing fear and the knowledge that something terrible is about to befall Will and Betty that makes The Rain Dancers such an unforgettable experience. I read with such a sense of foreboding and fear as I waited for the fate of Will and Betty to be decided...

The reason for Laurent’s visit and the unravelling of Betty Colby’s past come together in an explosive and brilliant conclusion making this one of the best short novellas I have ever read. Greg F Gifune is a writer of such emotive and descriptive power and this short story as a showcase for his undoubted writing talent.
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review 2015-02-18 00:00
The Rain Dancers
The Rain Dancers - Greg F. Gifune This is a disturbing, atmospheric, entirely creepy novella that is best read in one sitting late at night. On a rainy, stormy night, married couple Will and Betty Colby are visited by an old man that neither of them recognize, but who knows details about both of their pasts. Before the night is over, they will have to face old demons and confront painful memories. A sense of foreboding permeates through the entire story and you can literally feel the oppressive rain falling throughout. Gifune is one of those writers that make it seem easy. He doesn't write with fancy, flowery prose but he manages to choose just the right words to sneak up on you with sadness and pensive mystery, as the details of the plot are slowly revealed. I really enjoyed it.
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