Congratulations to Mari Cheney, winner of last week's Friday Freebie multi-book contest: Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots by Jessica Soffer, Me Before You by Jojo Moyes, and There Once Lived a Girl Who Seduced Her Sister's Husband, and He Hanged Himself: Love Stories by Ludmilla Petrushevskaya.
Red Moon by Benjamin Percy, due to be released by Grand Central Publishing in early May. I try not to play favorites among the Friday Freebies I offer to you, but I've gotta be honest and say I've really been looking forward to this particular Friday when I could bring you Percy's new novel. I was a big fan of his previous works of fiction (The Wilding, Refresh, Refresh and The Language of Elk), so I had high expectations for Red Moon. I read an advance copy last month and it immediately catapulted to the top of my Best of 2013 list. I'll try to get a proper review written here at the blog, but in the meantime, rest assured this book comes with my highest recommendation. If you don't win the Friday Freebie contest, you are well-advised to buy your own copy.
Red Moon opens sedately with an ordinary scene of passengers boarding a plane:
The jet bridge elbows to the left, into the open door of the plane. One of the flight attendants stands in the kitchen carrel beyond the doorway. She smiles at him, her mouth heavily lipsticked. "Welcome aboard," she says, and then he is past her, into the hush of the first-class cabin, stutter-stepping down the aisle with everyone else. Those already seated turn the pages of their newspapers in rustling snaps. The storage compartments are all open, like unhinged mouths gaping at them, waiting to swallow the diaper bags and suitcases that people hoist upward before edging into their seats.The plane takes off. A man goes into the lavatory. When he emerges, he--
Well, I won't describe what happens, so I don't spoil the surprise. Let's just say the lives of everyone on board the plane are changed. Indeed, the course of world history is altered. Nay, the course of the entire novel takes a shocking, dramatic shift and suddenly Percy has put us in an entirely new world which is at once foreign and familiar. Let me also say this, if you liked Justin Cronin's The Passage and The Twelve, you will totally dig Red Moon. In fact, you may even howl with delight. There, I've already said too much.
Peter Straub (Ghost Story, Koko) praised the book by saying: "With Red Moon one of our most blazingly gifted young writers stakes his claim to national attention. Benjamin Percy has one great advantage over most writers who attempt 'literary horror': he understands the literature of real horror from the inside out, and he speaks it like a native. This is a novel with the power to thrill and transport, also to lead the reader well out of her comfort zone and into emotional territory few people have ever seen."
I couldn't agree more, sir.
If you'd like a chance at winning a copy of Red Moon, all you have to do is email your name and mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put FRIDAY FREEBIE in the e-mail subject line. One entry per person, please. Despite its name, the Friday Freebie runs all week long and remains open to entries until midnight on May 2, at which time I'll draw the winning name. I'll announce the lucky reader on May 3. If you'd like to join the mailing list for the once-a-week newsletter simply add the words "Sign me up for the newsletter" in the body of your email. Your email address and other personal information will never be sold or given to a third party (except in those instances where the publisher requires a mailing address for sending Friday Freebie winners copies of the book).
Want to double your odds of winning? Get an extra entry in the contest by posting a link to this webpage on your blog, your Facebook wall or by tweeting it on Twitter. Once you've done any of those things, send me an additional e-mail saying "I've shared" and I'll put your name in the hat twice.