Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Blood in Electric Blue by Greg Gifune

Blood In Electric BlueBlood In Electric Blue by Greg F. Gifune

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Blood in Electric Blue is a well-written novel, a journey that is steeped in surrealism. This is one of those books where you don't quite know what is real and what isn't. Is Dignon really being preyed upon by a siren, or has years of physical and psychological abuse, and a hopeless, lonely adulthood broken his sanity? You don't really know. As I read this story, I came to my own conclusion, and it made me sad. I would like for lost and lonely Dignon and his brother Wilma (who is a transsexual) to have an optimistic future... Alas, it doesn't seem likely.

I thought that the writing was evocative, highly visual, and emotive. I found myself being pulled into the narrative, and cared about Dignon, feeling deeply for him. The sadness that enveloped him in his normal life, also infected me. I felt his sense of disconnection and loneliness deeply. He was like a person looking inside through the glass, trapped outside in the cold. As a cat lover, I appreciated his close bond with Mr. Tibbs, his beloved feline companion.

This struck me as a very sad story. It was also effective as a dark fiction/horror novel, even though the horror elements are somewhat ambiguous. I would recommend this to readers who enjoy dark fiction with horror elements, written in a fashion that feels 'literary.' As a person who dislikes genre snobbery, I rather dislike using that term. However, I do feel that readers who enjoy character-based stories that plumb the depths of speculative fiction and horror would view this book as a more literary-oriented novel. As such, I'd put this forth as a recommendation to reader with these tastes. If you are like me and prefer upbeat stories, you won't find that here. However, it was worth a read for its exploration of the emotional and psychological effects of abuse and isolation on a person. Essentially showcasing characters that are definitely of the walking wounded variety.

Overall rating: 3.5/5.0 stars

Thanks to Jeannie for loaning me her copy and recommending Greg Gifune as a writer to me.

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