Reviews of Dark Fiction

For Rye by Gavin Gardiner

When I received the paperback of this book, it arrived in a blood spattered wrapper and I knew I was in trouble. The best part of that is, the book is actually a good one!

A suicidal author named Renata is unexpectedly called back to her hometown of Millbury Peak. Her mother has been murdered, the killer is loose and her ailing father needs care. Distracted from her dark intentions for now, Renata keeps her head down and does what needs to be done. She discovers that her mother was killed in a ritual way, one created by the horror writer Quentin C. Rye in one of his books. She then meets the author himself, and soon her life is changed forever. Why do Rye’s horror books make her so uncomfortable? What could anyone have to gain from killing Renata’s mother in such a way? You’ll have to read this to find out!

There are several mysteries here and as the threads began to unravel, deep and dark secrets are revealed. These secrets are doled out on the regular, making the reader itch for the next revelation. I found the plotting and the pacing to be well done and never once did I get bored.

I did have a few problems with some of the character’s actions, mainly Renata’s, (but I can’t figure out how to do a spoiler tag here on Word Press, so that’s all I can say about that.) I also felt like the characters could have had a bit more meat to them, but then again, that might have affected the pacing, so what do I know? I’m just a reader.

For about the first half of this book, the horrors were mostly on the quiet side, but during the second half, gory stuff is going down. Make no mistake, it gets delightfully ugly!

Overall, I found FOR RYE an engaging read. With the short chapters and fast pacing the whole story flew right by. For the last third or so, I had trouble putting the book down at all. Twists and turns, lefts and rights, ups and downs, with characters morphing into altogether different beings…all these things had me reading late into the night.

I have always enjoyed discovering new-to-me authors, and Gavin Gardiner’s FOR RYE is a discovery that I hope will have long term payoffs because I had a heck of a good time with this book! Sign me up for the next one!


I received a blood spattered book from the author in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it!

For Rye Book Cover For Rye
Gavin Gardiner
Burton Mayers Books

Renata Wakefield, a traumatised novelist on the brink of suicide, is drawn back to her childhood hometown following her mother's ritualistic murder. Before long, she becomes ensnared in the mysteries of Millbury Peak as one question lies heavy:

Who killed Sylvia Wakefield?

As the answer draws nearer, as madness continues to envelop the quaint country town, Renata will come to realise that the key to all this insanity lies with one man - the world's leading writer of horror fiction. His name is Quentin C. Rye, and he will guide her to the revelation that true madness lies within.

Discovering that the darkness of her family's history runs deeper than she ever could have imagined, Renata Wakefield's eyes will finally be opened to one single, hideous truth, which will awaken a long-dormant evil.

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