- File Size: 146 KB
- Print Length: 44 pages
- Publisher: Troy Aaron Ratliff; 1 edition (December 16, 2011)
- Publication Date: December 16, 2011
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B007IQC6TC
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,883,651 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
The Uninvited Guest Kindle Edition
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Top customer reviews
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It was supposed to be a celebration. Good times for all. A wedding and new beginnings.
Harlan is crashing the party, kind of. Jose's mother insisted he go to the wedding and when he asks Harlan to go, he figures why not. There'll be free food and booze and maybe some babes to dance with.
It seems like it takes forever to get there. The wedding is being held in a lodge surrounded by dense woods.
Finally, they arrive. The wedding goes off without a hitch. Now it's time to eat, drink, and be merry. Except it's taking forever to get to the dancing.
Finally the music starts and the happy couple do the traditional bride and groom shuffle. Everyone is oohing and aahing, taking copious pictures and video.
Harlan, standing at the back of the gathering, happens to glance out one of the windows. Everyone else is watching the happy couple, but something made him look.
Something outside, maybe a shadow, slid along the windowsill. No, not a shadow, it had bulk. It seemed to take a long time to pass.
The windows are spaced about 5 to 6 feet apart. In the time it took to glance to the next window, it was sliding past that one too!
Everyone is still watching the couple. Harlan feels frozen in time. A look at the doors shows they're still standing wide open.
An overwhelming feeling of dread passes over him. Something is coming. It's almost to the doors.
The author wrote this story from Harlan's point of view. It worked really good. I experienced everything with Harlan, felt his confusion, dread, and disbelief. And then his terror.
Have you ever had that feeling like something really bad is going to happen? That's how I felt, right along with Harlan.
Harlan may have been an uninvited guest, but he's not the only one.
This gets a Five from me!
I purchased this as a free book from Amazon.
In addition to enjoying the book myself, I plan to share this one with my older children. I think they'll enjoy it just as much as I did, maybe even more since the age of the character is closer to their age than mine.
All in all, I believe Mr. Ratliff is an author to watch for. He brings a sense of originality and humor to the literary world. He's not afraid to be himself and I'm pretty certain that he fails to fall within any trends, current or former. Thank you, sir, for writing such an interesting and funny read. God knows I need to laugh more often. =)
Jose's relationship with his mother was a very nice touch. It added depth to the character but worked well for the plot, too. The wedding is first presented as an event Harlan and Jose weren't too thrilled to attend and the mother functions as a killjoy at times.
I'm on the fence about the structure. Harlan lets on early in the story that these events happen in the past. The scene with the "uninvited guest" is less suspenseful since we know everything will turn out ok. Don't get me wrong. It's certainly a terrifying situation. The reader can't help but wonder how Harlan will get out of it. However, the situation would be more pressing if we knew Harlan's life were really at stake.
I must admit though the climax is strong and it did make me wonder for a moment if I misread the beginning and Harlan was actually narrating what lead to his death.
While the tone is meant to be colloquial, there a few repeat phrases that lose their effect after being told so many times. Ratliff does a good job SHOWING that his characters are young, slightly immature males. He does such as good job showing it, that after Harlan rationalizes his actions with a reminder of his age and "how teenagers act", it becomes redundant.
Another such phrase is "don't get me wrong." When I see it, it's like Harlan as the narrator feels the need to do some extra explaining. Trust the reader. By Harlan taking the time to explain away every doubt the reader MAY have, it pulls away from the action with the "uninvited guest," which is what drives the story. Also, it reminds me that Harlan is fine in the future, so I don't need to worry whether or not he'll make it out of this ok.
That said Ratliff is talented. The descriptions are nice and there several phrases that I highlighted as outstanding. There's a moment later in the story when Harlan is staring at Seville and he "sees" what she will look like when she is older because of the stress. The timing was perfect and it was magnificiently done.
It's a pleasant, easy read, so I'd recommend it for anyone, but especially for any young men heading to wedding they expect to find boring.
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Ratliff has a unique and interesting voice that I just love.Read more