So Cold the River
Little, Brown & Co., 2010 (2010)
Reviewed by Kelly Thunstrom
o Cold the River
's book jacket uses words such as
. I wouldn't go that far, but if you are looking for an original, well-written tale very reminiscent of Stephen King's
, then this might be the book for you.
ric Shaw is a down-on-his-luck, back-from-LA, Chicago filmmaker who is now
video life portraits
at funerals to make ends meet. To make matters worse, he is also on his way to divorce from his wife, Claire. When he is approached by Alyssa Bradford to spend a few weeks in French Lick and West Baden to document the mysterious past of her dying father-in-law, Campbell, he can't say no. Both are small towns with deep histories in their extraordinary hotels (I told you to expect
). Shaw meets many people along the way who are willing to help him, but becomes addicted to the towns' water. The water shows him visions of Campbell's life in the early 1900s. The plot takes a sinister turn when Eric's visions become stronger.
he story begins strongly with a penchant for page turning. Midway through, it loses some steam, but everything is nicely pulled together in the end. Though I did not find it an
icy, terrifying winner
, as Dennis Lehane's blurb on the cover suggests, if you are looking for sheer entertainment, you can find it here.
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