Midnight Rain (June 2004)
A novel by James Newman

Exclusive to the Earthling edition are a foreword by Ed Gorman, an afterword by James Newman, and cover stamping and interior art by Alex McVey.

SYNOPSIS: Do you remember the exact moment your childhood ended?

1979. Jimmy Carter is elected America's 39th President. New York police apprehend the "Son of Sam," and the King of Rock n' Roll has permanently left the building. In a town called Midnight, North Carolina, twelve-year-old Kyle Mackey couldn't care less about any of that. He has his own problems to deal with, as he ventures toward a strange new world called manhood...

Kyle's older brother Dan is going away to college. Several years ago their father was killed in Viet Nam, and Mom is an alcoholic devoted more to the bottle these days than to her family. Kyle has never felt so alone. The night before Dan's flight leaves for Florida, Kyle visits what he calls his "Secret Place." All boys have a Secret Place, he believes, and his is an old shack in the woods bordering Midnight. Kyle's love for his secret place is shattered, however, when he stumbles upon something that proves his favorite spot in the world is neither as private nor as innocent as he once thought...

It begins with the naked, battered corpse of a young woman. And, standing over her, a man Kyle knows...

MIDNIGHT RAIN is a dark coming-of-age novel in the vein of Robert McCammon's BOY'S LIFE and Stephen King's THE BODY (STAND BY ME). It is a tale of growing up in the South, a reflection of boyhood and all its wonders, and the story of how one boy deals with a terrible secret that threatens to tear apart both his family and hometown.

This is the true first edition of James's debut novel, available now:

250 numbered clothbound hardcovers, signed by James Newman


10 lettered, slipcased, leatherbound hardcovers, with silk ribbon
page marker and different endsheets, signed by James Newman, Ed Gorman, and Alex McVey (lettereds SOLD OUT in less than 24 hours!)


The slipcased, leatherbound lettered edition, with cover art in a stamped recess in the front board on paper matching the endsheets, housed in a custom made slipcase covered with handmade paper individually dipped in ink - each slipcase is unique. (Silver silk page ribbon marker not shown.)

Praise for a book doesn't get any better than this!

"An extremely satisfying, fast moving novel of the loss of youth, innocence and murder. This is one of those surprising books that doesn't come along too often."

"It takes a lot of nerve to write a coming of age tale following in the steps of such authors as Stephen King, Robert McCammon, and Ed Gorman. James Newman did have the nerve, and, as luck often helps the daring ones, he succeeds. MIDNIGHT RAIN is a very dark story, more of a thriller than a horror novel, with a gentle touch of nostalgia for childhood, a magical yet terrible time when we're supposed to be happy and we often are, but we don't realize it until that time is behind us forever. Newman is a hell of a writer."

"James Newman has written a smashing dark debut that kept me turning pages right through to THE END."
— Ed Gorman

"A page-turning debut from a future master of suspense. Newman delivers the thrills!"
— Brian Keene

"MIDNIGHT RAIN is a harrowing, utterly terrifying ride through a time not long past, a dark Southern town, and the waking nightmare faced by one young man when he discovers a dreadful truth ... one of the best books I've read in the last few years."
— Elizabeth Massie

"MIDNIGHT RAIN is Grade-A storytelling. Full of sweet nostalgia and nasty surprises ... and characters you actually care about. I read it in one sitting and it was a pleasure."
— Richard Chizmar

"A beautifully written adult story of murder and a boy. Grimly true-to-life, evocative, and compelling. I love it!"
— Piers Anthony

From HELLNOTES Newsletter, May 13, 2004 (reprinted with permission) - Review by Garrett Peck:

"Holy Rollers, Batman! James Newman finally has his debut novel out. And it's as dark a coming-of-age story as one could hope for.

MIDNIGHT RAIN is a tight-as-a-drum suspense thriller saturated in paranoia and late '70s nostalgia. Newman rips every comfort away from his protagonist, leaving him in threatening isolation. The wicked world of adults has seldom been more frightening. The first person narration is steeped in pain and panic. The evocation of small town Southern life is picture perfect, and the plot throws twists at regular intervals. It might be wise to wear gloves while reading this book; otherwise you might just gnaw your fingernails clean off.

Ed Gorman provides a brief introduction. He was the right choice, as MIDNIGHT RAIN is the best story of this type since Gorman's "Moonchasers." The print run is small: only 250 signed/numbered hardcovers and 10 leatherbound and slipcased hardcovers. This book is recommended to readers on the strength of the story, and to collectors because it's sure to become a greatly sought-after rarity as Newman's reputation inevitably rises."