The Bleeding Season

The Bleeding Season - Greg F. Gifune I think I'm going to be in the minority on this one.

Beautifully written, no doubt about that. The first third of the book was gripping and intriguing, but then the story became mired in lengthy ruminations by the narrator (usually not a good thing in a first-person book) and rambling didactics by secondary characters whose eloquence inexplicably exceeded what it by all rights should have been given their descriptions.

There were several problems I had here, the main one being that the plot:lenth ratio was way off. What could have been an excellent novella is instead padded out into a full-length novel. Words, so many words - pretty words that flow and sparkle, but ultimately add little to the story. The actions of the protoganist throughout the story have a deus ex machina feel that I never was able to buy into as real, urgent or even likely, and this reduced the level of suspense to curiousity rather than excitement.

The other issue I had was with the complete seriousness of the proceedings. The ambition of the author to achieve "literary" or "meaningful" fiction status seems to be greater than what the product actually delivers, and the darkness and evil it intends to portray comes off to me about as menacing as a Nine Inch Nails video from the mid-nineties. A little fun never fails to hurt a work of horror in my opinion, and there is little in the way of fun here. Overly earnest writing in horror makes me snicker, sorry.

Several scenes in the book stood out as exceptionally realized in written word, but actual horrors were few and far between. Unfortunately, I found the money shots in this book to be highly reminiscent of things I've seen in many horror films over the years. Excellent chops, few truly original ideas.

I will read more by this author in the future, as I'm sure this book was in sync with the prevailing trends of horror at the time of release. Just not my cup of tea in the story and style department.