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So Cold the River Paperback – January 6, 2011
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Amazon Best Books of the Month, June 2010: Award-winning author Michael Koryta's first foray into the supernatural genre is spellbinding and check-your-doors-and-windows scary, and it all begins with a check and a bottle of water. Filmmaker Eric Shaw had a knack for getting the exact right shot--an unexplained tug that unerringly put him on the right path--until his temper killed his Hollywood career. He gets a shot at redemption when a wealthy young woman commissions a video tribute for her father-in-law, a dying millionaire named Campbell Bradford. A man with a shady past, a town with a rich history, and an antique bottle of water claiming to "cure all ills" lead Shaw to small town West Baden, where things quickly go sideways. Shaw finds himself at odds with Bradford's only surviving family, a bitter and violent great-grandson named Josiah, and that once familiar tug of Shaw's becomes something darker and more dangerous. At its deliciously creepy core, So Cold the River is about two men facing down their demons, and what happens when those demons fight back. --Daphne Durham --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. In this explosive thriller from Koryta (Envy the Night), failed filmmaker Eric Shaw is eking out a living making family home videos when a client offers him big bucks to travel to the resort town of West Baden, Ind., the childhood home of her father-in-law, Campbell Bradford, to shoot a video history of his life. Almost immediately, things go weird. Eric uncovers evidence of another Campbell Bradford, a petty tyrant who lived a generation before the other and terrorized the locals. The older Campbell begins appearing in horrific visions to Eric after he sips the peculiar mineral water that made West Baden famous. Koryta spins a spellbinding tale of an unholy lust for power that reaches from beyond the grave and suspends disbelief through the believable interactions of fully developed characters. A cataclysmic finale will put readers in mind of some of the best recent works of supernatural horror, among which this book ranks. 6-city author tour. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Alyssa Bradford asks filmmaker Eric Shaw to create a film documentary about the life of her mega rich father-in-law, Campbell Bradford. Campbell's history is a carefully guarded secret and the only clues about his past are the name of his hometown (West Baden) and a murky bottle of mineral spring water that he has kept his entire life. On his deathbed, Campbell is in no position to assist in the project (or is he?) and Eric Shaw must travel to West Baden to try to uncover the information necessary to produce the film and receive a very large amount of money for his efforts. Even before he leaves Chicago, strange events begin happening that make him question what he has gotten himself into but he continues to move forward since the money is critical at this point in time. What unfolds in West Baden will keep the reader guessing and intrigued until the very end.
I have seen this novel classified as horror but I think that is misleading. I NEVER read horror but found this book to be more suspense and paranormal intrigue. If you enjoy a good mystery and a strong sense of place, this novel would be one to try. It is a bit long and I thought there could have been some editing in the middle section to tighten it up but the beginning and end make it all worth it. I finished the last 200 pages in one evening since I couldn't put it down once I got started. Really strong writing on its own and a particularly enjoyable read if you are from the area.