"Lords of Twilight" Book Review
Written by Greg F. Gifune
2012, 186 pages, Fiction
Released on March 1st, 2012
Finding authors that consistently deliver first-rate work is rare. Greg F. Gifune is part of the very select group of writers whose books I approach without fear of being let down. In Lords of Twilight, Gifune once again delivers a narrative packed with the eerie, noir-esque atmosphere, attention to detail, multidimensional characters, and emotional grittiness that characterizes his prose. He also manages to make aliens spooky again.
Lords of Twilight tells the story of Lane Boyce, a divorced man who recently moved to the small, isolated town of Edgar, Maine. He came looking for peace after a devastating period in his life that ended in divorce. However, tranquility is far from what the town can offer. Bizarre things are happening in Edgar. People are seeing strange lights in the night sky, cows are being killed and mutilated in bizarre ways, and a local farmer is found naked and dead with neither tracks nor clothes to be found. To make things even weirder, men who identify themselves simply as "federal agents" are showing up in dark SUVs. Lane hears uncanny stories, but believes there must be reasonable explanations for everything that's going on. As he struggles with the demons of his past, he'll learn that there is something out there in the woods, some dark figures that seem to be spying on him and getting closer as a storm approaches. When it arrives, the outside world and Lane's inner turmoil will clash in a way that will make reality nothing but a word.
Yes, there are aliens in the book, but that's not what the narrative focuses on. Just like in the film Event Horizon, whatever mysterious presence is out in the woods has access to Lane's innermost thoughts, fears, longings and regrets. He is a man torn to shreds by something he might or might have not done (I won't spoil it for you); a man haunted by the ghosts of two living women: his wife and the young girl whose accusations destroyed his life. The dark things outside his window are a frame that only enhances his mental state. By creating an emotionally bleak atmosphere, the aliens add a truly creepy layer to the story instead of taking over entirely. This makes Lords of Twilight infinitely more enjoyable and original than if the author had relied on big-headed grey men attacking people.
Some of what Gifune deals with here, even when doing so just briefly, are things that any UFO enthusiast will love. Scary stories are told by characters who have seen things that have placed them on the brink of sanity and the mention of mutilated cows took me back to the mid-1990s when, at least back home in the Caribbean, this topic was in every alien/paranormal/UFO/weird things magazine.
Ultimately, Lords of Twilight is a dreary, uncanny and entertaining look at how we can become victims of our own past, but that underlying narrative is encased in a tale of sorrow and dark beings from another place. If you want to feel some chills before winter gets here, pick this up today.