Bestselling author R. L. Stine has terrified children for decades with his Goosebumps and Fear Street series, and now for the first time (and long overdue, in my opinion) he seeks to create fear in the minds of grownups with his first adult horror novel, Red Rain. But fans of Stine need not worry that the book will feature too many “old people,” for the devils at the heart of this story are identical twin boys.
Lea Sutter is a travel writer looking to write about the beauty and uniqueness of a small island off the coast of South Carolina. It is there that she observes and documents a seemingly unbelievable ritual where the dead are brought back to life. But then the weather turns bad and a hurricane strikes the island, destroying many buildings and leaving many of the inhabitants dead. Lea wakes to find herself one of the few survivors. There are also two young, identical twin boys, Samuel and Daniel, who have lost their home, their parents, everything. Lea decides to adopt the twins and bring them back to her home on Long Island.
Mark, Lea’s husband, is a child psychologist who has written a controversial book about parenting, and is less than thrilled when Lea returns home with these unusual twins. Mark and Lea’s own children, Ira and Elena, don’t take well to the twins either, as they become weirder and weirder each day. Before they know it, something very strange is going on, and Mark finds himself the number one suspect of two gruesome murders, and it all seems to be pointing to these two boys. But they’re so angelic, how could they ever cause harm?
Stine creates an enjoyable horror novel with Red Rain, which gets a little ham-handed at times with Mark’s career and his parenting duties with the twins, as well as excelling in his career with just a bachelor’s degree, and the very unlikely occurrence of a hurricane in April; but it is nevertheless a gripping story with some great gruesome horror elements that will keep readers hooked to the end.
Originally written on September 25, 2012 ©Alex C. Telander.
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