Rage

ISBN: 084395311X
Leisure Books, New York
Mass-market paperback
Released 2004

Rage by Steve Gerlach

Ben is just a normal guy.

He’s got family problems.

He’s got girl problems.

He’s got psychiatric problems.

He wants what everybody else wants.

A car, nice parents and a girlfriend.

But Ben can’t have what he wants.

He can’t afford a car.

His father wishes he was never born.

Girls seem to hate him.

With every part of his life slipping away from him, Ben desperately clings to all he has left as he feels himself slowly being pushed further and further off the deep end. He knows if something doesn’t change soon, something bad is going to happen.

Something very bad.

He can’t control it.

IT controls him.

RAGE…

~~

 

Reviews of Rage

“Gerlach’s RAGE is a volcano of a story that builds from deceptively quiet beginnings to an incandescent eruption of violence. This tale of one man’s smouldering, malignant rage at society is a potent one.” – Simon Clark, author of Vampyrrhic, UK
“Think Huck Finn on a river of blood… Taxi Driver meets American Psycho in this simmering novel of hate, loneliness and despair. The characters are real, plucked from everyday life, and the climax is a sickening tour deforce to kill for.” – The Spook Magazine, USA
“A gripping thriller, full of white-knuckle suspense.” – Brian Keene, author of The Rising and Terminal, USA
“Gerlach holds nothing back.” – Hellnotes, April 2004
“Gerlach will blow you away.” – Brent Zirnheld, author of Lynchville Pop. 5150
“A disturbing build-up to a shocking climax. RAGE is a powerful and distinctly unsettling read.” – Tim Lebbon, author of Fears Unnamed, USA
“Wow, I read this novel in two sittings and that’s saying something! If you’ve read THE NOCTURNE or LOVE LIES DYING, forget everything you know about Steve’s work and leave expectations at the door because RAGE is as different from those two novels as Stephen King’s original Bachman Books were different from his other releases. (And yeah, it’s not lost on me that one of the Bachman books was also entitled RAGE). Written in 1992, RAGE is a novel that has been in Steve’s trunk for a long time and he openly admits in the introduction that he didn’t want it published. After reading the book, I think Steve is certifiably insane because this book should have been published long ago. RAGE’s protagonist is a college student named Benjamin who is wound so tight you fear he’ll explode any minute. Steve does a great job getting under the guy’s skin and exploring what drives him. At first, Ben just turned me off, as he does to most everyone he comes into contact with, but the more you read, the more human he becomes until you start to feel for the guy. Along the way you start to wonder if maybe, just maybe Ben can be saved from himself. I can’t say more without giving away too much. A terrific read!” – Brent Zirnheld, USA. Author of “Lynchville Pop. 5150″
“Written years prior to the stunning horror/sci-fi hybrid, THE NOCTURNE, and the last year’s erotic suspense chiller, LOVE LIES DYING, Gerlach’s newest novel, RAGE, is actually one of his earliest…yet is just now set for publication. Similar to recent backlog releases by such talents as Richard Matheson and Richard Laymon, RAGE had been filed away only to gather dust while the author set to work on other projects that were quickly snatched up and published to great acclaim. With such acclaim comes increased reader demand, and with RAGE Gerlach offers his fans a truly special treat to sate their appetite. Written in the early ’90′s, RAGE tells a simple, linear tale of a man’s disintegration of self-worth and self-control. Ben is a college student who finds himself increasingly unable to cope with what he construes as constant rejection and betrayal by the female gender and, indeed, the world at large. As he delves deeper and deeper into despair and rage over the inequities he feels heaped upon him, the pressurized control he has kept his emotions under begins to loosen and his rage comes steaming closer and closer to the surface, climaxing finally in a dramatic showdown between Ben and his own rage. RAGE is a strong, character-driven novel, and Gerlach is at his unflinchingly best when exposing his readers to the red, raw, unpredictable psyche of his protagonist. RAGE is a unique, special treat for anyone who enjoys a finely-crafted tale, as well as those Gerlach fans who seek insight into the early style (and own psyche) of the man who would ultimately pen such classic genre works as THE NOCTURNE and LOVE LIES DYING.” – Ron Clinton, USA
“About two weeks ago I finished Rage. Man, that was a good book. It kept me wanting to read more and more due to the fact that it would make me wonder what was going to happen next. I enjoyed it very much.” – Wesley Sosh, USA via Afghanistan
“I picked up one of the RAGE limited editions last Sunday (number 85!!!!) and had to write after reading it. I enjoyed it so much. It’s harsh and honest and cutting and is a prime example of the ‘slow burn’ thriller/horror novel. It grew on me like cancer on a joint and I couldn’t stop scratching the strangely welcome irritation it was causing. I related to the main character’s sense of dislocation and disconnection and welcomed the inevitable. Thanks for continuing to write material that’s straight from the heart.” – Mark Savage, Australia
“Done! Probably shouldn’t say too much in case there’s some who hasn’t read it yet but Rage offered great insight to why we see the author with sunglasses on in most pics On the serious side; Easy to read and quite a ride! Disturbingly close to reality for some young men I suppose, and that added a couple of layers to the novel that raised both some thoughts and questions. I enjoyed it and I’ll be sure to pick up more from Steve if I find someplace to order it. Hopefully no nightmares for me, but I won’t know about that until tomorrow morning…” – Tord, Norway
“Let me start off by saying that I am a Gerlach fan. I enjoyed his earlier works THE NOCTURNE and LOVE LIES DYING greatly. They are fun, gruesome, fast-paced action books that pick you up, slam you against the wall and then throw you back down at the end battered, bloody and with a big grin on your face. However, RAGE is a different story (both literally and figuratively speaking). There’s not a lot of blood and gore, not a lot of action. This, my friends, is a drama. And a damn fine one at that. It’s a character study of how just a normal bloke can go off the rails – and the way Gerlach captures his frustrations, disappointments and anger is perfect. I really did feel for the main character, Ben. He wasn’t a caricature, or an absolute loser; he wasn’t a mean son-of-a-bitch or a burgeoning serial killer. The way Gerlach paints him is with sorrow, loss and empathy. This is a universal story and I think every reader will be able to identify with Ben’s feelings, and by the end, even understand and, possibly agree, with his motives and actions. A story as powerful as this couldn’t have been achieved without the skill of a great writer. And I think this is Gerlach’s best written work – it is tight and subtle. No flowery prose, or clunky descriptions. Gerlach lets the story, and his characters flow and evolve naturally. This is great stuff. I felt for Ben, and you will too.” – Brett McBean, Australia
“Ben’s got problems. Some problems that all other young men may have…family problems, girl problems. He’s also got psychiatric problems, unlike most other men. Poor Ben! “What am I doing wrong? Why can’t I get on with my parents, most of all my father, of whom I should look up to? Why can’t I have a car like everyone else my own age? Why don’t girls seem to be interested in me?” As the tragic story of Ben unfolds, his rage gathers pace. Like the endless dripping of a tap, it slowly erodes his self-belief, his self-esteem, and his sanity. Then, Ben meets Christine. A lovely girl, someone he can be intimate with, someone he can share his life with. Someone who will wile away all his troubles… Steve Gerlach’s brilliant new novel, RAGE, will leave you breathless. I haven’t read any book as quickly as I have RAGE. I couldn’t put it down. From the first page to the last, I was burning with curiosity as to what would happen next. Perhaps Richard Laymon’s “Come Out Tonight” comes close. And strangely enough, Richard dedicated “Come Out Tonight” to Steve!!! Ben is a twenty-two year old loner, with only one real friend. But after a while, even his real friend starts to lose patience with him. Ben even takes the desperate step to visit his parents, to perhaps heal old wounds with them, perhaps just an excuse to escape. I could really relate to Ben (can’t most guys when they think back to their late teens and early twenties?). Okay, so there was the odd guy here and there who just seemed to have all the luck, all the women, the nice car, the good job and all the opportunities that came knocking. But for most of us, we were all like Ben at one time or another. Ben spirals out of control and although he clings on to what he has left, the inevitably of tragedy sets in. More and more, he wanders from the bright light of good and fades in the dark desperation of anger, hate and RAGE! To say anymore would spoil the novel, but the ending will leave you feeling bitter, sad and angry at society. I thought RAGE was one of my favourite ever novels. That’s quite an accolade considering that I’ve read Tolstoy, Dickens, Shakespeare, James Herbert, Stephen King and Richard Laymon. Gerlach’s latest thrilling offering is the sort of book that everyone should read, because I think everyone can relate to it in some way. Out of ten? Hell – I’d give at least a nine. Go while the going’s good and see if you can grab a slice of gut-wrenching Gerlach. RAGE is a GREAT novel by a GREAT writer!” – Alan Ferguson, UK
“First of all, I want to state that Rage was a great book. I really enjoyed it. I read it in two days. This is a good sign. If I lose interest in a book, I tend to pick up another book and read it and when I’m finished I try to go back and finish the first one. However, last Friday, I actually looked forward to going to my off-duty job so I could finish reading Rage. Now I want to go back read Love Lies Dying. There are many disturbing scenes in the book, some of which will remain with you long afterwards, as you can’t get them out of your head. But it is all part of what contributes to the main character’s rage. Rage is a fantastic book and I would recommend it to other readers. ” – Sam Smith, USA

 

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