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The Rainy Season (The Ghosts Trilogy #3)

3.61 of 5 stars 3.61  ·  rating details  ·  271 ratings  ·  27 reviews
The World Fantasy Award-winning author of Winter Tides presents the haunting story of a grieving widower, a little girl with an unusual gift, and an old house permeated by the past.
Paperback, 356 pages
Published August 1st 2000 by Ace (first published 1999)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-28 of 423)
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Bill  Kerwin

James Blaylock is known as a "fabulist," that is, a fantasy writer whose world is more like magic realism than traditional fantasy, a writer who constructs a clearly marvelous reality, but one which exists underneath the quotidian appearances of our common existence. This novel, for example begins with a realistic account of the rainy season in Southern California, an area the writer obviously knows and loves well, but this California--evoked with an acute sense of place--is home to an ancient a
This book was a chore to read for me. Many of the issues that annoyed me about it won't necessarily get under another reader's skin: the jacket promised me one story, but through the first third I had only seen that story three times, as Blaylock instead showed a historical timeline (and its history just struck me as off, somehow); too many of the viewpoint characters were Evil (as in, *just* evil, acting solely out of greed and, well, evilness); the book touched on a number of issues that are p ...more
Trixie Fontaine
I picked up this book because the cover intrigued me, I'd heard the author's name and was curious, and mostly decided to buy it because it boasted a recommendation from William Gibson so I assumed it would be AMAZING, highly detailed, etc. While the concept was great/imaginative and there were many nice things about the book, it was just a step above your typical mass market paperback. Even with the cool concept it just didn't hold my interest but for some reason I *wanted* to like it and finish ...more
This book is hard to categorize; it’s not really horror, it’s not really science fiction, it’s not what I would think of when someone said ‘fantasy, and it’s got some elements of a thriller. It does have a unique premise: that certain wells in Southern California only fill up during a rainy season (which does not occur every year there) and have the ability to suck people into them. That’s not the odd bit; the odd bit is that some people can come back out of them years later, looking just as the ...more
The Rainy Season is, apparently book number three in a series of which I have only read book number one, being Night Relics. Obviously, I need to get hold of number two, Winter Tides. The good thing is that the three books, though part of a "trilogy" seem to be stand-alone novels, that work just fine on their own.

In The Rainy Season we get snippets of several different time periods, but, oddly, involving the same group of people. In the midst of these people, affecting their lives drastically,
The story takes place in the dry regions of Arizona and California over a period of rather more than 100 years. Occasionally there is a wet season which fills the underground aquifers and the water in the wells, springs and ponds rises. Some of these water sources have been made magical with rites and sacrifices. People can get lost (rather than drowned) in these wells and lakes and may turn up anywhen, but only in a year with enough water.

Strange glass-like trinkets can be found by these wells
Well, after my other Blaylock experience, I'm almost surprised I even started this one. In fact, I almost didn't — the description of the story sounded a bit too "magical realism" to me.

But I've been on a reading tear lately and have blazed through my most recent stockpile, so I decided to read the first few pages just to see...

And, I liked it. It wasn't amazing or anything, but it was a good summer page-turner, and unlike Lord Kelvin's Machine, it had the kind of time travel I *do* like, where
The book was recommended to me. I'd never read Blaylock, so I thought I'd give it a go. I was left with one or two little questions that I thought the author was going to get back to, but he never did. Those one or two little things don't diminish the story for me though. It was an enjoyable story, not the horror or deep mysticism I was expecting, but a good read overall.
I'm kind of surprised I finished this. The setting wasn't that memorable and we never really had time to really love or hate any of the characters. In some stories, the plot and characters feel inevitable -- like they couldn't have turned out any other way. In this book, everything that happened and everything that any character said/did/felt was just because the author said so. Technically that's true of any written story, but the really good ones make the characters feel alive all on their own ...more
A satisfying, exciting fantasy/thriller set in Southern California. Phil Ainsworth is a photographer and a bit of a hermit, until his sister's death brings him sole custody of his niece, Amy. Despite his grief and uncertainty about his talents as a parent, Phil welcomes Amy into his home and they quickly begin to form a bond. Less welcome are the prowlers that the rainy season brings to his property, all lurking about the old well as though waiting for something -- or someone -- to appear...

My o
Kate McDougall Sackler
I feel like there was a good story trapped in this book. Interesting concept drowned in a too choppy tale with insincere and unbelievable characters. It began to get good more than halfway through, but by then it was too little too late.
Tammy Devine
I thought this was a really well written book.
Aug 23, 2015 Dan rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2015

As other reviews have noted, an interesting concept, difficult to follow at first, characters lacked depth and I don't know that I ever really understood the way in which the crystals/wells worked. Or perhaps I do understand and just found it-- unsatisfying. I found two of the characters to be particularly annoying (Elizabeth and Hannah) and couldn't relate to any of the others enough to compensate.
I really enjoyed this book when I read it, although I think if I were to reread it I might find the characters too one-dimensional.

Another reviewer mention that the characters were either good or evil with no in between, and even though it's been years since I read this book, I could see what she meant.
I Think this book is not that special.
I wouldn't recommend it to friends
Jyllian Martini
The idea was great. The characterization not so much. They were too broadly and unbelieveably drawn in places and given too little distinctiveness in others. I wanted more character detail and plot than I got and less time on the landscape.
Enjoyed this ghost story. Light in the romance dept., but constant plot acceleration. A bit frantic @ times. Mrs. Darwin's character made me nervous. Sketchy from the get-go.
C. Lorion
Loved the atmosphere in this story. Not a ground-breaking story line, but I cared for the characters, had a good sense of the setting, and loved the imagery. Well worth the time.
This wasn't a very good book. It jumped around too much, it had frustratingly illogical parts to the plot and characters, and the ending was terrible.
Omer Oral
Obsessively well detailed and delicately crafted. It's a movie that you don't watch but read.
Sylvia Medina
Too confusing in the beginning. About the middle of the book everything in the beginning started to make sense; hard to put down after that.
Not bad. Kind of weird in places (though I don't think it really qualifies as magical realism), it was enjoyable to read.
I did not care for this novel. It seemed to jump around and was very foggy.
Great suspense, magical realism, and history in a SoCal setting.
First read in 2000.
Fred Hughes
Fred Hughes marked it as to-read
Aug 13, 2015
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James Paul Blaylock is an American fantasy author. He is noted for his distinctive style. He writes in a humorous way: His characters never walk, they clump along, or when someone complains (in a flying machine) that flight is impossible, the other characters agree and show him why he's right.

He was born in Long Beach, California; studied English at California State University, Fullerton, receivin
More about James P. Blaylock...

Other Books in the Series

The Ghosts Trilogy (3 books)
  • Night Relics
  • Winter Tides
The Last Coin Homunculus Paper Grail The Elfin Ship The Digging Leviathan

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