It’s difficult for any writer to produce sustained suspense in a short story, but D.L. Finn accomplishes that and more quite well in Red Eyes in the Darkness. The story is narrated first-person by a woman who appears to be stalked by their former brother-in-law, the man she believes killed her sister. Worse, evidence apparently planted by him has made her and her husband suspects. Their family and friends have turned against them, and the local sheriff humors her concerns with a mien of suspicion.
The suspense begins with her waking and believing the man she refers to as It is in the house, having cut their power. We hear his voice and see other clues, but have no idea of his intentions, which appear to be to taunt more than pounce. More than leaving us waiting and listening, though, author Finn punctuates the scenes with gunshots, blood, and even more mysteries. Then her husband has a dream offering more mystery. Even when our couple flees the area, the suspense follows them and brings them back.
The book has a satisfying denouement, and it hints at a greater story with supernatural characters living among us. I always enjoy reading work by D.L. Finn. In the era of so much bad writing, it is refreshing to breeze through narrative presented clearly and even punctuated correctly. Her characters are real enough to come alive, and her description conjures imagery without bogging down the plot. My favorites are one-liners like, “My heart was trying to escape my chest while my breath struggled to enter it.” Unlike the narrator’s struggles, my praise comes easily. I highly recommend this as a great stand-alone story of mystery and suspense, but also as entrée to the fantastic worlds of author D.L. Finn.
About D.L. Finn
D.L. Finn is an independent California local who encourages everyone to embrace their inner child. She was born and raised in the foggy Bay Area, but in 1990 relocated with her husband, kids, dogs, and cats to the Sierra foothills in Nevada City, CA. She immersed herself in reading all types of books, but especially loved romance, horror, and fantasy. She always treasured creating her own reality on paper. Finally, being surrounded by towering pines, oaks, and cedars, her creativity was nurtured until it bloomed. Her creations vary from children’s books, young adult fantasy, and adult paranormal romance to an autobiography with poetry. She continues on her adventures with an open invitation for her readers to join her.