Wednesday, June 5, 2013

So Cold the River

Title: So Cold the River

Author: Michael Koryta

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

ISBN: 9780316053631

Pages: 503

Obtained: Library copy (Print and ebook)

Why this book?:

My grandmother's book club chose it.



I started this as an ebook, but mostly read it in print.  This was so much faster paced compared to the last book club book.  What a relief.  Though someone from work said her sister said it was hard to get into.  I guess it's an individual person kind of thing.  I know my grandmother read it quickly.  And I'll see what the others think on the 11th.

Eric is a failed, um, I can't remember what he called himself.  He made films, documentaries and the like, but weird things happened and he had conflict with the directors and some sort of breakdown... it was all kinda muddled and relayed to the reader in past tense.  Because now Eric does those film things they play at weddings and funerals and other important events.  He especially excels at the funeral film/slideshows.  Hence he gets the client who starts this whole adventure...

He's to document his client's father's childhood/childhood history/boyhood home.  So he drives from Chicago to French Lick and West Baden, Indiana.  But before he leaves the creepy stuff starts happening.  And it all involves that bottle of water his client gave him to use as inspiration.

I found the story interesting with touches of humor and wallops of creepy.  Also to be found...
  • Intriguing descriptions of the hotels which are, apparently, real.
  • Bits about the instruments used to measure the weather, etc.
  • Quite a bit of trust and "am I crazy" sort of moments on the main characters behalf.  Can you believe him?
  • Addiction - and not the way you might think.
  • Some racial (and racist) relations.
  • Some paranormal ghost and possession and evil stuffs.
  • In line with the former two points, violence is to be expected.
And that's about it without telling you the whole story.  I would have no problem reading more by this author - except as this is not a series, that seems unlikely.


  1. I am from Indiana and have been by that hotel so many times and never gone in! Now I want to go inside if I have a chance on my next trip. I have the book on my shelf TBR. Thanks for the reviews and trailers.

    1. I never even heard of this book before the told me their choice, but I'd love to see the hotels. Glad it could help. Let me know what you think when you read it.

    2. Just commented about this book in another post, but wanted to add that our library does have this in audio format! I'm downloading it now. :)

  2. Finally started this book on audio and like I normally do when I find a book I love (at least the beginning of it), I google the title and read the reviews. I know. Most readers do this before reading a book, but I'm scared a bad review will turn me off. Then I'll always wonder if I might have liked it.

    Anyway, I read negative reviews about the ending. Was it really that disappointing? Also, LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the mineral water scene, where he talked himself into drinking the stuff then got sick. The narrator delivered that scene perfectly!

    1. I enjoyed it. A coworker said her sister didn't like, and I was surprised. Most people in the book club liked it. And I apologize if this is repetative. Anyway, glad you liked it.

    2. Jo, I haven't finished yet. I was just curious about the ending though. So far, I'm enjoying the primary character. He has so much depth...

    3. I don't recall thinking the ending was disappointing, but it's been awhile. I think maybe it's because of how much was left to interpretation.

      I liked him too. He's flawed, but still a good guy...

    4. Jo, finished the book and the ending was great. Okay, so we don't know where Campbell went, but I'm not exactly 100% how he arrived either...other than the was bottled up like an evil genie. Have you read any of his other books? I'd like to, just not sure which one. He has a few!

    5. So glad you enjoyed through to the ending. I have not read anything else by this author. In genera it's easier me to continue ready an author's works if they have a series. I think if I were to read another it might be The Cypress House. The description I read for it appeals. Or maybe Tonight I Said Goodbye since it is the first in a three book series.


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