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Black Rain by [Delaney, Matthew B.J.]
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Black Rain Kindle Edition

3.6 out of 5 stars 849 customer reviews

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Length: 386 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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From the Editor

I very rarely read a book twice, but when I first finished Black Rain—which hurtles through a breakneck plot set in a near-future New York City and ends with a revelation that casts everything that came before it in a new light—I went immediately back to the first page and dived in again.

The book begins at a masquerade party, where a prominent geneticist and his wife are assassinated by a mysterious assailant for reasons unknown. Our hero and protagonist, Jack Saxton, is framed for the killing, and the mile-a-minute tale that follows features an art heist, a romance, a gladiatorial tournament (think The Hunger Games recast as famous historical battles), and a relentless parade of canny plot twists that culminates in a truly grand finale that turns the whole story on its head.

Fans of genre novels from science fiction to political suspense and police procedurals—author Matthew Delaney is a decorated member of the NYPD and writes the law-enforcement perspective really well—will find that Black Rain serves up all of the above at a whirlwind pace. So make yourself some popcorn and get comfortable as Delaney takes you for a long con that just might leave you wanting to do it all over again.

- Jason Kirk, Editor


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Matthew B.J. Delaney published his first novel, Jinn, in 2003. Winner of the International Horror Guild Award, the novel was optioned for film by Touchstone Pictures, was featured as People magazine’s Page-Turner of the Week, and received a Publishers Weekly Starred Review. Delaney received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Dartmouth College and a master’s in public administration from Harvard.

Following the attacks of September 11, 2001, he left a career in finance and moved from Boston to New York City to join the New York City Police Department. He has been a member of the NYPD for twelve years and has been assigned to precincts throughout Manhattan and the Bronx as well as within Police Headquarters and the Intelligence Division. He is currently a decorated special operations lieutenant serving in a Brooklyn violent crime suppression unit. He continues to write in his spare time.


Product Details

  • File Size: 1959 KB
  • Print Length: 386 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1503937011
  • Publisher: 47North (September 1, 2016)
  • Publication Date: September 1, 2016
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01B1OGQMO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,796 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A. Reader TOP 500 REVIEWER on August 1, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have to admit, I was about one-third of the way through this book and thought I had found a winner. The world that Mr. Delaney had created was very detailed and extremely interesting. The book held my interest and I was concerned about what would happen with the main character. I was ready to commend the author for having established some gritty characters without resorting to f-bombs to get the point across...then everything began to change. Here's a synopsis of what worked and what didn't, without any spoilers:

THE WORLD -- Though similar to many stories involving androids or robots that eventually come into conflict with humans, the details of this future world helped make it come alive. There was no way that I could resist being drawn into and marvel at what the author had created. For me, this was the best aspect of the book.

THE CHARACTERS -- It was easy to cheer on the main character, Jack Sexton, as well as a couple of the other people introduced into the story. This definitely contributed to the book being a quick read.

THE PLOT -- Overall, a good idea for a story. The tale of humans and non-humans coexisting is not a new one, and Mr. Delaney has done a good job creating a fresh look at the potential troubles. Some of the plot elements in the second half of the story were troubling, though. Characters should not suddenly be able to have talents just because it is necessary to the plot (for instance, Night, a secondary character, twice displays incredible skills that are not part of her background). Too many incredulous, thank-the-stars moments occur in the second half, plot devices that cheapen what could have been an incredible story.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Quick & Dirty Highlights

This taut thriller is a good bet to rocket to number one among Kindle books. The writing will latch onto your psyche and tug you this way and that, with solid, evocative writing. Although written with an eye to The Hunger Games, it reminded me more of The Running Man.

On the negative side - almost gratuitous density of f-bombs and the feeling of anxiety remaining for the next story...

Length: Print, 386 pages.

Target Audience/Genre: Action-Adventure would be my genre. Shades of The Running Man and of The Hunger Games, to be more specific.

Q - How was this book obtained?
A - Bought as my Kindle First selection.

Q - Is this a book that I can read without having to read others first?
A – Yes, but when you finish reading this tale, you're likely to be scrambling to find a sequel.

Q - Are there a lot of typos/misspellings, grammatical errors or other editing failures?
A – No.

Q - Is this a fast, easy read or is it more of a leisure read?
A – Fast-paced leisure read. Many readers will lose sleep for a night or two.

Q - What sort of language does this writer use to amplify the points made?
A – Adult English laced with a generous helping of f-bombs.

Q - What age group is this suitable for?
A - If this were a film it likely would be rated PG-17 for language and violence. The violence is not overly graphic, but it does draw a clear enough picture to stir one's senses.

Q - My biggest pleasure or disappointment?
A - I can't really elaborate here without possibly divulging a spoiler, precisely what bothered me. Suffice it to say, there are additional books coming...
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Throughout the reading of this book, I was thinking how it seemed about right for a wait-to-watch-on-HBO movie: plenty of the popular plot points, usual twists, and opportunities for good-looking movie stars. Big doses of Blade Runner and Running Man, some Minority Report and Hunger Games interludes, even touches of A.I. and maybe Gattaca. Familiar, but not in a bad way.

This is what I would call a "fast and mindless" read; good for the commute, sunbathing, waiting at the airport or DMV, etc. It won't require intense concentration and isn't really thought-provoking, it is just a story moving along. The writing is not at all sophisticated, it was like what I have found in many of my kids' Young Adult dystopian novels. The first third of the book I found pretty slow-going; second third gets the action sequences revved up; last third pays off in a satisfying (but not surprising) way.

I read this when it was a Kindle First selection for Prime members; this is the first time I've bothered to finish one of those books so that says something!
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By Sim on August 18, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have no idea why I bothered to finish this.
Merge the movies, gladiator, bladerunner and the matrix and add some Truman show. Don't forget to ripoff entire scenes. Edit badly and get amazon to feature it. Tada, black rain.
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For Jack Saxton, life is good; his step-father is head of Genico, the largest provider of "samps" (gen-engineered medicines to cure diseases and genetic disorders), and the gen-engineered artificial-human Synthates who perform all the distasteful or tedious tasks that keep his world running smoothly. Like his step-brother Phillip, Jack's only job is to enjoy life.

For Phillip Saxton, the world would be better with his step-brother Jack. He lives a hard-partying life reminiscent of Gordon Gecko's "Wall Street" Wall Street (Insider Trading Edition). What he buys and sells is not stocks and businesses, but manufactured people—Synthates—and modified biological samples. His immediate goal is to score enough cocaine to make it through the night; long-term, he wants to supplant Jack as the favored son in his father's eyes. Phillip's envy seems to have poisoned him, to the point where he reports Jack as a Synthate "passing as human," condemning his brother to die in the Games. Jack's life is about to spin out of control, his wife murdered, his status changed instantly from presumptive heir of Genico to slave.

Then there's the Black Rain of the title, a hideous plague that killed or disabled "naturals," but to which the Synthates were immune. The Games that slay so many Synthates seem justified by the need to punish the slaves for their release of Black Rain: "For humans to exist, we must live within a society. And a society cannot function with the presence of extreme violence. 'In my opinion our human moral code has less to do with a fear of punishment and more to do with our inherent need to maintain a stable society.
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