Blood in Electric Blue

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Pub Date 19 May 2021 | Archive Date 30 Jun 2021
Crossroad Press, Macabre Ink

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Dignon Malloy lives with his cat Mr. Tibbs in a rundown apartment in the heart of a dreary, nameless, industrial coastal city. Haunted by dark visions, memories of horrific childhood abuse and the recent murder of a coworker, his is a lonely, sad and painful existence...until he ventures into a used bookstore and comes across an old paperback titled Mythical Beings in a Mortal World.

Inside, someone has written a name—Bree Harper—and a phone number. Is it an innocent note left by the previous owner, or something far more sinister? As Dignon delves deeper into the book, and who, or possibly what, the beautiful and enigmatic Bree Harper is, he begins to realize finding this book may not have been a random event after all. His life and history may be more complex than he realized, and his role in the universe much deadlier than he ever imagined.

As Dignon moves closer to the truth, the lines between pain and beauty, the horrors of the past and the terrifying realities of the present, become strangely malleable, blurring what is real and what is myth, who and what he and those around him may be, what the ghosts haunting him from his past may truly mean, and how the evil mythological creature stalking him may not be a myth at all, but horrifyingly real.

Dignon Malloy lives with his cat Mr. Tibbs in a rundown apartment in the heart of a dreary, nameless, industrial coastal city. Haunted by dark visions, memories of horrific childhood abuse and the...

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EDITION Paperback
ISBN 9781637899519
PRICE $12.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 12 members

Featured Reviews

Not even going to lie! At first when I started this book! K didn't think I was going to make it!
It started off slow. About 15% through is when things started picking up and getting crazy!
I enjoyed the writing of BIEB it held my attention and I wanted to finish to find out how this book ends!
Dignon Malloy was a great character to follow along he was interesting and intriguing. As well as the story.
I enjoyed reading this ebook and look forward to more from Greg!

Thank you NetGalley and Crossroad Press for this amazing read!

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Review of BLOOD IN ELECTRIC BLUE by Greg F. Gifune

If you've read anything by Greg Gifune, you know to expect cutting-edge, off-the-mainstream fiction that will delve deep into the reader and carve its own unforgettable niche. Mr. Gifune presents several enduring (in more senses than one) characters in BLOOD IN ELECTRIC BLUE, a novella I believe has and will impact me as powerfully as did his novel SAYING UNCLE.

BLOOD IN ELECTRIC BLUE weaves mythology with loneliness, death, violence, childhood horrors, transgender/transsexualism, the longing for love (in many stripes), domestic violence, and so much more, including the backdrop of a city with its selective neighborhoods, a low-rent "red light" district, and a suspicious chemical manufactory that never ever stops. It is unforgettable, literally and metaphorically.

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Okay, wow. I wasn't sure about this book when I first started it, as it seemed like a very slow-burn even for someone like myself that loves slow-burns. There's a melancholy tone to the book from the beginning, and while it doesn't seem horrific at first, little bits and dribbles of horror are spattered throughout and then it REALLY gets going.

What I expected was a supernatural horror novel, but what I got was a much more open-ended and surreal portrait of the horrors of mental illness and the scars that life can leave on us. I love that the interpretation of the ending is heavily implied, but still somewhat left to the reader.

I would definitely recommend this book to others, especially those who enjoy quieter, more human-based horror, and will very much be looking for more from this author in the future!

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Really enjoyed this book. Great characters, and great pacing. I wasn't able to tell which way the story was going to go, whether the horror was real, or if the character had some mental issues going on (or both), until the end. This worked very well, drawing me in, and wanted to get to the end to see how it turn out. Will need to read more of Greg Gifune. #BloodinElectricBlue #NetGalley

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I loved this book. As always, Greg Gifune has written an eerie, atmospheric, creepy tale that draws you in and holds you prisoner to the end. I wasn't sure which direction the story was going, and loved that. I was hooked from page one. Excellent book from a great Author!!!!!

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What about Mr. Tibbs? WHAT ABOUT MR. TIBBS!

Dignon is a nice guy who loves his cat (Mr. Tibbs) but people around Dignon, through no fault of his own, (except for one guy) keep dying.

Blood in Electric Blue is one of those horror books where it's hard to tell if the horror is really happening or if it's a figment of the protagonist's imagination. There is a prologue where a siren comes out of the sea, but since Dignon has several horrible nightmares throughout the story, it's hard to know what's really happening and what he thinks is happening.

This is not a bad thing. There are lots of classic horror stories where the reader isn't sure if it's a ghost story or a mental instability story. Are his siren and his criminals monsters or are they regular people that Dignon has imagined to be monsters?

His nightmares and his reluctance to be out in the world stem from horrific child abuse--terrible child abuse. This may cause triggering, so beware.

The writing was very good. A few times Dignon's sister seemed a little preachy, kind of like one of those affirmation folks, but, as she was a victim of child abuse (and abuse as an adult as she was attracted to that kind of man) I think she was trying to make herself and her brother feel better.

But, damnit, leave some food and water out for Mr. Tibbs and a note for your sister to come and take care of him. After all, Mr. Tibbs deserves it.

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An examination of the decaying properties of trauma and loneliness, Blood in Electric is an emotionally devastating journey through the life of 40-something Dignon, a sad, lonely man cut off from the world after a traumatic experience, and his chance encounter with a woman who tries to pull him out. As the story goes on, we're left to question the true intentions of this woman, as well as the other figures in his past, present, and future..

A Lynchian-style deep dive into the human psyche, Blood in Electric Blue is brutal - perhaps, too brutal. That isn't to say it's a violent novel, because on the whole it's not, there are only a handful of paragraphs that contain any violence at all. Instead, it's a novel interested in experiencing emotional brutality, taking us deep into the emotional internality of its protagonist and then pulling us into the quagmire. This is only exacerbated by the fact that Gifune has an exquisite ability to make us empathize with each of its characters, making this painful journey into madness hit all the harder. It leaves ones feeling like you, not just the character, have just experienced something horrifying.

Blood in Electric Blue is an excellent novel, but it's also a hard one. It's enough to leave one emotionally drained by the last few pages, especially if you're especially sensitive. It's beautifully empathetic and well rounded, if a little loose in its final stages, and in the end it's a unique, emotionally satisfying experience.

Thanks to Netgalley and Crossroad Press for getting to experience this excellent novel.

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Blood in Electric Blue is an intriguing and thought provoking story about centered on the lonely and damaged, Dignon. Dignon's father always told him that he killed his mother because she died during childbirth. As children Dignon and his brother Willy were horribly and regularly beaten. Throughout childhood and into adulthood they only had each other. As adults, Dignon suffers a traumatic PTSD inducing work event and Willy, who is now his beloved sister, is his only friend/family. Suddenly Dignon's life begins to change when he buys a book about mythical beings in a used book store. Inside the book he see's "this book belongs to Bree Harper, followed by a phone number". Suddenly, all he can think about is this Bree Harper. He calls her to return her book and finds her to be friendly, open, beautiful and enchanting. Even more amazing, she seems to be interested in him! She's not repelled by him like he was so sure she would be. Something troubles Dignon about this apparent miracle though, something about Bree's "lost" book and the face that, when he opened it to a random page he found himself reading about "the Siren". Turning to another page he finds, "The Death Maker". Could it be.....could Dignon, killer of his mother and by stand stander to the death of others, be a Death Maker? Could Bree be a Siren, the beauty whose song will lure him to his own death? We want all the best for Dignon, and for his lovely sister Willy, a sweet character who loves her brother. We want to know......are these just people trying to get through this lonely life or are they...mythical beings? #netgalley #BloodInElectricBlue

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Dignon lives in an apartment with his cat in a coastal city. He is on disability due to seeing his partner killed at
work. He reads as he enjoys it. He visits a used bookstore and buys a book on mythical beings. When he opens the book he sees a woman’s name and phone number. Dignon is fascinated by it. He decides to call her using the book as an excuse. He is so curious about her. They do meet.but she is dealing with an ex-boyfriend that refuses being an ex. They end up separating before he can give the book to her. What will happen? When they meet again, he finds reality becoming pliable. He doesn’t know what to believe.

The author has written an intriguing horror novel. I did find it confusing at times — maybe my reality was blurring as I read it. I am glad I had the opportunity to read it. It’s definitely “twilight zone” story.

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This is a great chiller blending true craftsmanship in shaping its characters and world. It's a rich intelligent take on a dark creature infiltrating a troubled character's world told with smooth, elegant prose. A mysterious old book with a seemingly innocuous statement of ownership leads Dignon Malloy into the sphere of Bree Harper, who's beautiful but much more than she seems. Well worth a look.

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I tried but could not get through this book. It is nothing like what I expected. Prologue starts with some creature coming out of the ocean and preparing to go after someone but then it becomes a depressing story of Dignon, that’s the main character’s name. He was hurt by love when he was 20 and can’t get over it. Now he is in his 40’s and is desperate for someone to love him. He may have met someone when he bought a used book with a name and a phone number were written inside. He contacts her and they agree to meet and shortly after that I quit. I made it to 52% and had to stop. The writing was good and the story was sappy but interesting but I really thought I was going to be reading a horror or a thriller. It was not for me, at least not the first half of the book.

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4 Stars!

It has been a long time since I've read anything from Greg F. Gifune. Too long, in fact. When I saw a new edition of Blood in Electric Blue was out, I knew it was past time to pick another Gifune book. I had read this novel a long time ago (when it was published by the sadly defunct DarkFuse) but it was as good a way as any to get back into the world of an underappreciated master of dark fiction.

Dignon Malloy lived a far from glamorous life. He lived alone with his cat, Mr. Tibbs, in a rundown apartment in a dreary, industrial city on the Eastern coast of the U.S. Dignon was a prisoner of his past. His life was defined by an abusive childhood and the more recent violent death of a coworker in front of his eyes. It was this darkness that defined his world and his very existence. He was a prisoner to the shadows that constantly attacked his mind. He had almost given up on living. There was no hope to be found. Then he came across a name and phone number scrawled in a paperback copy of Mythical Beings in a Mortal World. Suddenly, a small spark of life seemed to ignite somewhere in the dark recesses of his soul.

It all started with a name: Bree Harper. He knew nothing about her but he seemed almost drawn to her. Finally, he worked up the courage to call the number in the book and was entranced by the voice on the other end of the phone. When Bree agreed to meet him to get the book back, he was hooked. The meeting seemed almost idyllic so much that even an abrupt ending due to the appearance of a crazed ex-boyfriend could not dampen the flame Bree kindled inside him. As he falls further under her spell, he becomes aware that she may not be the goodness that he first imagined but that something more sinister may be at work. Maybe her ex-boyfriend was right. Maybe Bree would eat his soul. As the past and present began to swirly around him and the line between good and evil grew dimmer, Dignon knew that he needed to see his relationship through with Bree for better or for worse. He could only hope that he would make it through with his mind and soul still intact.

What is Blood in Electric Blue really about? That is difficult to say. Gifune does a good job of blurring the line between myth in reality so that the reader, like Dignon, struggles to determine what is real. Is Dignon being haunted by a mythological creature that he starts to believe Bree to be or is it the more mundane yet no less damaging past that is catching up to him. There are no simple answers here. The only sure thing in this novel is darkness both in the world and in Dignon's mind. Is Bree going to devour his soul or is he slowly sinking into his dark past? Dignon is obsessed with his past, that much is clear from the beginning, but is that what is working to destroy him or is the enemy simply the darkness in his own mind?

Gifune knows how to craft a bleak story and Blood in Electric Blue is not a novel to read if one is looking for a feel-good vibe. There is very little light in this book and Gifune delves into the darkest corners of the human psyche with a deft hand. It can be a little hard to read the book at times, the hopelessness felt by the characters can be a bit overwhelming, but there is also a keen insight into what it is that makes us who we are at play here as well. This is a novel that takes some thought to work through and forces the reader to reflect on things that maybe should be left unstirred. This is a story that strays to the very edge of despair and threatens to leave the reader behind. But Gifune is there throughout, guiding the reader along the chasm of sanity and pulling him slowly back toward reality. This is not my favorite Gifune novel but that does not mean that it is bad by any stretch of the imagination. Blood in Electric Blue will leave you thinking about what it means to be human, what shapes out lives and the world around us, and makes sure that we will never look into the shadows in quite the same way again.

I would like to thank Crossroads Press and NetGalley for this review copy. Blood in Electric Blue is available now.

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