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Low Red Moon

(Chance Matthews #2)

4.04  ·  Rating details ·  798 ratings  ·  55 reviews
Several years after the events in Threshold, Chance and Deacon have married. They're looking ahead to the future, trying to put the past behind them. But new nightmares await them as a woman with a need for violence enters their lives. And something even worse has followed her...
Paperback, 337 pages
Published November 4th 2003 by Roc (first published November 1st 2003)
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Average rating 4.04  · 
Rating details
 ·  798 ratings  ·  55 reviews

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Jul 04, 2008 rated it really liked it
[Note: The author, miffed by my saying I did not like any of her characters, personally attacked my review on her blog.]

Caitlin R. Kiernan is one of the rising stars of horror, and her literary prowess is once again on display in her novel Low Red Moon. Not only is the story a most unpredictable of sequels to her highly acclaimed novel Threshold: A Novel of Deep Time, it is streaked with deadly slashes of originality. Whereas Threshold was rooted in a neo-Gothic Lovecraftian universe
Aug 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing

This is a wonderful, chilling, surreal Lovecraftian novel from one of today's most powerful literary voices. The novel mainly concerns three characters: Deacon and Chance Silvey and Narcissa (gotta love that name!)Snow. Deacon and Chance, a married couple here, appeared in Kiernan's earlier work "Threshold," and both are complicated, fractured characters. Deacon is battling the demon of alcoholism and the curse of psychic visions. Chance is a paleontologist (a
Aug 09, 2012 rated it liked it
I initially read Threshold and thought it was horrible, so I figured that all the buzz I had heard about Caitlín Kiernan was just hype. But then I read Daughter of Hounds and I thought it was pretty good, so I figured I'd come back and read Low Red Moon. And it was...okay.

Horror is a fragile thing. It's relatively easy for it to tip over into amusement if events or characters get too unbelieveable, as movies like the Evil Dead series aptly demonstrate, but it's just as easy for the mood to entirely evaporate from
Sep 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: horror/supernatural lovers
It's interesting how disparate the reviews to this book are. It seems to be a love it or hate it kind of book!

I loved it, more than any of Kiernan's that I've read, with the possible exception of Murder Of Angels, certainly better than Threshold.

I agree somewhat with other reviewers about the characters in this book, or at least the protagonists- I really didn't like them much, didn't hate them exactly, but I didn't connect with them until at least the last third of the book. When it came down to t
J. Stone
Jun 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
My favorite novel by Kiernan. The show of growth from FIve of CUps is extraordinary. She really found herself with this book. I've read it 4 times. That's how special of a book it is.
Nov 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Ok thriller from the usually reliable Kiernan. This one, which is sequel to a previous book focuses on the young couple Chance, a paleontologist and eight months pregnant and her psychic, recovering alcoholic husband Deacon. Emotionally damaged but determined to create a stable life for their upcoming child, they become tangled in a plot involving lyncanthropes and a murderous half-human, half-something named Narcissa Snow, who his convinced that offering Deacon and Chance's child to a group of ...more
Sep 20, 2018 rated it did not like it
Underwhelming with overblown prose that tries to make this novel more than it is.
Sep 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I picked this up in a used bookstore. I’d never heard of the book or author before. I still count myself so lucky to have picked this up as I discovered one of my favorite writers.

Kiernan has a gift when it comes to prose, language, and characterizations. Her novels are reminiscent of Lovecraft. They reverberate some time after reading.

I also like the fact that her books are sometimes set in Birmingham. I love the paleontology and science being fused with the supernatural. I would recommend re
Sep 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: status-owned
Married, living in a new apartment, with a child on the way, Chance and Deacon are trying to make a go at a normal life. But when Chance begins to have vivid, violent visions and Deacon, a gifted psychic, is pulled into a police search for a serial killer, their peace and safety are utterly destroyed. Low Red Moon is the second in a loose series featuring these characters, and it's a story of otherworldy forces, approaching madness, and the people that try to survive within this chaos. It has a numb ...more
Jan 26, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, horror
After reading "Bradbury Weather" in Subterranean magazine, I decided I wanted to have a closer look at Caitlín R. Kiernan's fiction. After some consideration, I picked up Low Red Moon from a local bookstore and read it through. I was enthralled, having a harder and harder time putting it down the farther I got into the work.

First off, the present tense narrative threw me in the beginning. Modern fiction conditions the reader to read in the past tense so when I started reading the boo
Alicia Utter
Rate: 7

This is the next in the serious of Kiernan's books, and several of the characters are revived: Chance, Deacon, and Sadie. Chance and Deacon are married and expecting their first child. While Deacon attempts to stay sober and keep his psychic powers at bay, Chance is working at the university, but strange things keep happening. Chance, the scientist, starts having visions of blood, and Deacon is drawn into a murder case, to help with his vision. What he sees is a part werewolf
Jeremy Preacher
May 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
Low Red Moon picks up, more or less, where Threshold left off, with Deacon and Chance married and pregnant. The resolution of Threshold seems to have held, and the characters from Silk are all out of town. (I love coherent worldbuilding like this, where the various stories aren't directly related but they all exist in each other's universe and have minor or indirect effects on each other.) A new threat has come to town, with a whole new line of mythology, and Deacon and Chance have to deal with ...more
Jun 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This is the fourth book I've read by Caitlin Kiernan and as much as I love the others (Silk, Murder of Angels & Threshold) this was by far my favorite.
Low Red Moon picks up with Chance, Deacon and Sadie a few years down the road after Threshold. Sadie is pursuing her writing with the support of her parents and Deacon is now sober and married to Chance. Adding stress and anticipation to the mix; Chance is pregnant and due to deliver quite soon. But the impending arrival of an unplanned baby
Jun 28, 2013 rated it it was ok
Horror is really not my thing, but I picked this book up because of Neil Gaiman, right there on the cover, gushing about the writing style. As much as I love Mr. Gaiman's work and respect his literary opinion, I'm going to go ahead and respectfully disagree on this one.

I almost quit reading within two sentences. The author seems to be morally opposed to verbs, commas before conjunctions, and anything that might indicate the subject of a sentence. I think she's trying to convince me that the cha
Dec 28, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-horror
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2010
I have really come to consider Caitlin Kiernan as one my top three favorite authors.  I often follow her blog, and compare other reads to works of hers. This book continues from the end of Threshold, the story picking up from there. I found this one to be more conventional in the horror sense, yet it was more intimate and accessible.  This is Deacon's tale. He is the central protagonist in this one, and it is through his growth and maturation that the story unfolds. Deacon must accept his gifts, ...more
May 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2013
I somewhat foolishly (okay, very foolishly) read this one out of sequence, picking it up before reading "Threshold". I think it actually stands fairly well on its own, though.

It's fascinating going through and reading Kiernan's novels from the beginning. I love the links between her books (Daria Parker's music is referenced in "Low Red Moon", for example, and there are quotes from "Alice in Wonderland" which thread through this and later books).

As a standalone novel, this
Apr 21, 2009 rated it really liked it
By page 9, I am utterly absorbed. I think Kiernan is a genius with words and about as sick as my brain. Let's just hope she stays enough in this world for me to focus. I got really tired of characters mincing about the washed out netherworlds of Murder of Angels (which was written beautifully, I just couldn't keep focused on all that vague otherness.)

Okay, this book was equally inexplicable as her previous novels. She merely hints at why the otherworldliness should be true.
Feb 23, 2013 rated it liked it
Loved this for: its imagery, gritty lyricism, moments of sheer terror, the dream/future child, and the abrupt ending.

Did not like: didn't Chance already go through a whole book of supernatural occurences? Why is she all up in Deacon's shit about him being psychic? Also, if everyone could stop dilly-dallying for five seconds something might actually get done in this book. This isn't a complaint about lack of plot, just lack of "shut the fuck up and do it already." Narcissa can't be st
Jul 19, 2007 rated it it was ok
I had high hopes for this book judging from the amount and the sheer level of good reviews all around the book cover from well-renowned fantasy authors (like Gaiman and Straub, for instance). I found the book quite disappointing, however, and I couldn't wait for it to end. I didn't like the characters (except for Chance but only during the first half of the book) and the story was confusing especially at the end. It just didn't come together for me. I liked the way she tells the story though and ...more
Aug 12, 2011 rated it liked it
This book had a lot of potential but lost me with the disjointed plot. There were several points where I was left feeling like I was missing a key piece of information for the story and character motivations to make sense. The pace of the story varied from too slow to information overload. Narcissa was an incredible villain and I feel that the story only scratches the surface of doing her evil due justice. Deacon was obnoxious. Chance felt like she was floating through the story. Several of the ...more
Spencer Distraction
Feb 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
My absolute favorite of Caitlín R. Kiernan's full-length novels. The mythos she has created is so damn amazing, and makes me wish I were a child of the cuckoo, or at least a mercury-eyed, sharktooth-smiled dusty old vampire waltzing to the victrola, causing dirt and time to fall from the floor onto the heads ov the ghouls in the cellar. Daughter of Hounds goes further into this intricate world, but there is something about Narcissa Snow's relentless violence in her desperation to be accepted by ...more
Jun 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's always such a pleasure to read Kiernan's books. They're full of twists and turns and a whole lot of emotion as well. This one is no exception. I found myself immersed in a world of darkness and the occult and of mystery and suspense. The end was well written and it definitely let me with a mixture of sadness, happiness and relief and other emotions I just can't describe! The writing was perfect, as usual. The only thing I regret is having read this one first instead of the first in the seri ...more
Bernadette Walsh
Jul 26, 2014 rated it liked it
I tried to finish this book, I really did, but with 30 pages to go I pooped out. There were parts of the books that were brilliant and others--not so much. I really like this author's style but the plot in a lot of places was either boring or confusing.

This is one of this author's earlier works so I am going to give her later books a try because where the book worked, in the beginning for example and the parts dealing with the main character and the "monster," it really worked and it was totall
Sandy Lender
Apr 23, 2009 rated it liked it
Very bloody, very dark. There were occult images that I'm not familiar with that enhanced the feeling of darkness and the sense of hate the invading character had for the main character. I won't give it away, but it was quite disturbing.

Now, having said that, the author has a very unique style that lets you see the scenes very vividly. She's gifted with her words. As I said above, it was disturbing. For an author to disturb the reader, she has to be good. Bravo to Caitlin Kiernan.
Nov 19, 2007 rated it it was ok
Okay this book started off really good I was sucked and wanted to read more and more. Until the middle where things started to slow down and explanations started to tangle things up. Had i the opportunity to read it straight through and not break it up over many days this might have read smoothier. However, I was unable to finish it and not because it wasn't good or interesting but because it was slower than I anticipated. I might pick it up later and try again.
Jul 29, 2011 added it
Starts out weird, and continues with the weird.
It's one of the Mythic genre but I can't really tell which one. About halfway through, things get a little clearer.
The main character is a recovering alcoholic. Non of the players are really likeable, and by the end I was hoping everybody would die.
Jul 25, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: ?
Shelves: darkandviolent
Sort of a Fairy tale slash where-wolf story. This woman writes an really good book. Classic, modern-day, fantasy-horror. The charectors are real, and flawed.The pages howl with despair, and loss. and the blood flows and flows! The villain is fucking scary, and the fairies even scarier. Not for the squeamish or those who insist on a happy ending.
Oct 08, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: recs-horror
4.5. I usually hate werewolf stories but Kiernan's version of the myth here really worked for me. I love her use of geology and paleontology to evoke a sense of deep time/ancient horror, and her complicated female characters and monsters. I'm finding that I love all of her books except Silk, the first one I tried.
Ellen Herbert
May 17, 2012 rated it liked it
While this was written a few years ago and it is clear that her style is evolving, I completely enjoyed this book - got a chill, empathized with the characters, even the unbalanced, doomed anti-hero. Reading Kiernan will always take one deep into places seldom visited and this book is no different.

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Caitlín Rebekah Kiernan (born 26 May 1964) is the author of science fiction and dark fantasy works, including ten novels; many comic books; and more than two hundred published short stories, novellas, and vignettes. She is also the author of scientific papers in the field of paleontology.

(from Wikipedia)

Other books in the series

Chance Matthews (2 books)
  • Threshold (Chance Matthews #1)