Buzzworthy 2017 Books: The River at Night by Erica Ferencik
Scout Press; on sale 1/10/17
I’m not usually one for an adventure thriller, but THE RIVER AT NIGHT completely swept me up in its relentless plotting, engaging characters, and absorbing atmosphere. This book demands a bit of suspension of belief from the reader—not all its plot twists are the most believable, but I didn’t mind one bit. I was completely absorbed in this blend between a Ruth Ware-style psychological thriller and an action-packed adventure story.
We are less than one month away from the publication of this fantastic read, and I definitely consider it one of my most highly-anticipated of the new year. This will be a perfect choice for you if you’re looking for a binge-worthy of adventure, a story that dips into some of the ins-and-outs of female friendship, and a book that’s just plain entertaining. Read on for a plot summary, and for my top three reasons why THE RIVER AT NIGHT is a Buzzworthy 2017 Book!
Plot (from the publisher):
Winifred Allen needs a vacation.
Stifled by a soul-crushing job, devastated by the death of her beloved brother, and lonely after the end of a fifteen-year marriage, Wini is feeling vulnerable. So when her three best friends insist on a high-octane getaway for their annual girls’ trip, she signs on, despite her misgivings.
What starts out as an invigorating hiking and rafting excursion in the remote Allagash Wilderness soon becomes an all-too-real nightmare: A freak accident leaves the women stranded, separating them from their raft and everything they need to survive. When night descends, a fire on the mountainside lures them to a ramshackle camp that appears to be their lifeline. But as Wini and her friends grasp the true intent of their supposed saviors, long buried secrets emerge and lifelong allegiances are put to the test. To survive, Wini must reach beyond the world she knows to harness an inner strength she never knew she possessed.
CBTB's top three reasons why THE RIVER AT NIGHT is a Buzzworthy 2017 Book:
- An adventure story with a heart. As I mentioned above, I’m not one to pick up an adventure thriller—it’s just not in my wheelhouse. I look for thrillers with interpersonal drama and manipulations, rather than stories of danger in the wilderness. THE RIVER AT NIGHT is the perfect halfway point between the two. It completely transported me to the wilds of Maine, while also giving me all the good interpersonal drama that I was craving.
- Accessible and engaging characters. This story centers around Wini, a middle-aged woman who grapples with all the issues that so many women face. No matter your age, so many of us (men and women alike!) can understand body image concerns, not being quite sure where you fit in with your friend group, you name it. Wini grapples with these issues herself, and living in her head while she deals with them was surprisingly impactful for me.
- Reads a whole lot like a Ruth Ware novel. Now, we all know how much I love Ruth Ware, so this is a pretty darn big compliment, and Ferencik deserves it. There’s just something about her voice as an author that reminds me of Ware’s writing—her easy narration, her effortlessly-gradual ratcheting up of tension, her engaging characters… there’s just something about this book that felt like IN A DARK, DARK WOOD mixed with an episode of Survivor.
I adored this book. No, it’s not the most heavy or dark story—and it’s not intended to be. This book is pure, wild entertainment, and I absolutely loved it. To enjoy this book, you will have to suspend belief just a bit, and just embrace certain elements of the story that make it unlikely to happen in real life. But hey, it’s fiction, and I came into it hoping for an absorbing and immersive read that would sweep me away—and that’s exactly what I got.
THE RIVER AT NIGHT by Erica Ferencik releases January 10, 2017 from Scout Press.