by Johnston, Tim

"When two young women leave their college campus in the dead of winter for a 700-mile drive north to Minnesota, they suddenly find themselves fighting for their lives in the icy waters of the Black Root River, just miles from home. One girl's survival, and the other's death-murder, actually-stun the citizens of a small Minnesota town, thawing memories of another young woman who lost her life in the same river ten years earlier, and whose killer may yet live among them"-

Tim Johnston, a native of Iowa City, is the author of the New York Times bestseller Descent, as well as a young adult novel, Never So Green, and the story collection Irish Girl, winner of the Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction.

A young woman turns Nancy Drew after losing her friend and her father to accident and illness in Johnston's (The Descent, 2015, etc.) haunting novel. Though their relationship as roommates is fraught with tension and misunderstanding, Caroline and Audrey continue to be drawn together throughout their time at college. So when Audrey asks to borrow $150 for a bus ticket so she can visit her terminally ill father, Caroline spontaneously offers to drive her all the way home instead: " ‘What the fuck,' Caroline says. ‘Road trip.' " But a violent encounter at a gas station, followed by a car accident, leaves Audrey injured—and Caroline dead. Trying to come to terms with the tragedy, Audrey realizes that their accident had a lot in common with the death of another girl years ago; she begins to investigate on her own, and she finds that the people involved—the girl's suffering father; a young man who fell under suspicion; his lonely mother—are caught in the loose threads of the past and have been unable to move on. As she draws nearer to discovering the truth, Audrey realizes her own life may be in danger, yet she's driven inextricably on. If it sounds like a mystery, it is, but not in the traditional whodunit mode. This novel is careful layer upon careful layer, as deceptively thick yet brutally delicate as winter ice itself. Johnston's descriptions of people, places, grief, and loneliness are subtle and evocative; the minor plot about an aging dog becomes a rending portrait of the ravages of love. Indeed, for all its harsh observations about human nature, this novel has at its heart a strong belief that love, for all the pain it brings, is the one thing that truly saves us. An apt title that functions as a beautiful metaphor for all the secrets and emotions roiling beneath the surface of every human life. Copyright Kirkus 2018 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

Terms of Use   ©Copyright 2019 Follett School Solutions