Well you damn well ought to be. It’s no secret (I say so here, here, and here) that I’ve been writing and reading less horror in recent years, but one author who can always make me dive back into black waters is Greg F. Gifune. He’s got a gripping, literate sensibility soaked in atmosphere with a narrative momentum built on seriously muscular prose. He cooks up a flavorful stew full of characters out of myth, serial killers, acts of violence, and the ever fucked-up reality as nightmare, nightmare as reality theme that many attempt but few can pull off with any real style or meaning. Gary Braunbeck can do it. TM Wright can do it. And Greg is another stylistic master of the motif.
Greg was kind enough to send me a package of his latest releases, and in the past five days I’ve finished up both GARDENS OF NIGHT and DREAMS THE RAGMAN.
GARDENS OF NIGHT follows the sordid story of Marcus Banyon, who after suffering an unspeakable trauma vacations with his wife and best friend to a chalet in the deep woods where his apparently newfound capabilities to see and communicate with animals and the very forces of nature lead him to a farmhouse that’s been taken over by the three fates.
DREAMS OF THE RAGMAN focuses on two long-time friends, one now a junkie locked away by a small-minded, sadistic sheriff, who have been haunted by the Ragman, a serial killer who’s been on the prowl for decades, using the trains to enter towns and escape without a trace. The Ragman may or may not be a mythic boogieman, but his very presence has corrupted the lives of the protagonists and torn their friendship apart.
But don't stop there. Keep reading all the books and stories by Greg Gifune that you can get your hands on. I still haven't had enough and will be starting LONG AFTER DARK tonight. Go, now.
Special shoutout to Robert Dunbar of UNINVITED BOOKS for making his new publishing company's debut novel release Greg's own GARDENS OF NIGHT. Is this man wise or what? Hell yeah.
- Tom Piccirilli
- "We need to make books cool again. If you go home with someone & they don't have books, don't fuck 'em."--John Waters
I'm the author of more than twenty novels including SHADOW SEASON, THE COLD SPOT, THE COLDEST MILE, THE MIDNIGHT ROAD, THE DEAD LETTERS, and A CHOIR OF ILL CHILDREN. Look for my next one THE LAST KIND WORDS due out May '12 from Bantam Books. Contact: PicSelf1@aol.com