Synopses & Reviews
It starts with a beautiful woman and a challenge. As a gift for her husband, Alyssa Bradford approaches Eric Shaw to make a documentary about her father-in-law, Campbell Bradford, a 95-year-old billionaire whose past is wrapped in mystery. Eric grabs the job even though there are few clues to the man's past — just the name of his hometown and an antique water bottle he's kept his entire life.
In Bradford's hometown, Eric discovers an extraordinary history — a glorious domed hotel where movie stars, presidents, athletes, and mobsters once mingled, and hot springs whose miraculous mineral water cured everything from insomnia to malaria. Neglected for years, the resort has been restored to its former grandeur just in time for Eric's stay.
Just hours after his arrival, Eric experiences a frighteningly vivid vision. As the days pass, the frequency and intensity of his hallucinations increase and draw Eric deeper into the town's dark history. He discovers that something besides the hotel has been restored — a long-forgotten evil that will stop at nothing to regain its lost glory. Brilliantly imagined and terrifyingly real, So Cold the River is a tale of irresistible suspense with a racing, unstoppable current.
"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)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Koryta has ventured into genre-bending, successfully melding thriller elements to a horror story that recalls Stephen King. His tight, clear prose makes West Baden as creepy as Transylvania, and Eric is a compellingly flawed protagonist." Booklist
"A departure from Kortya's Lincoln Perry p.i. series (The Silent Hour, 2009, etc.) that's every bit as well-written." Kirkus Reviews
"This 'Midwestern Gothic'...is a departure from the author's prior neo-noir crime novels, but it's being positively compared to Stephen King, Joe Hill, and Peter Straub. Fans of horror and supernatural suspense will enjoy his latest, and darkest, work yet." Library Journal
"This book builds like a summer storm. Beautiful to watch until it shakes the house and knocks out the lights, leaving you alone in the dark. Another masterful work from Michael Koryta, So Cold the River is guaranteed to put the cold finger down your spine." Michael Connelly, bestselling author of The Scarecrow
"Michael Koryta is a gifted storyteller. His writing reminded me of the great Ruth Rendell — eerie, suspenseful, and pleasantly wicked. If you're looking for a dose of Midwestern Gothic at its best, So Cold the River will be just the thing for you." Scott Smith, bestselling author of A Simple Plan and The Ruins
"An icy, terrifying winner. So Cold the River puts an October chill in your blood by the end of the first chapter. It's not much longer before you've turned on all the lights and rechecked all the window locks. Few novelists warrant mention alongside Stephen King or Peter Straub. Michael Koryta, however, earns comparison to both." Dennis Lehane, bestselling author of Mystic River and Shutter Island
"Fast-paced and action-packed, So Cold the River is good, unclean fun. Like Joe Hill, Michael Koryta is infusing the old-school supernatural horror novel with new blood. Drink up!" Stewart O'Nan, author of A Prayer for the Dying
As a gift for her husband, Alyssa Bradford approaches Eric Shaw to make a documentary about her father-in-law, Campbell Bradford, a 95-year-old billionaire whose past is wrapped in mystery. Eric soon discovers a long-forgotten evil that will stop at nothing to regain its lost glory.
It starts with a beautiful woman. As a gift for her husband, Alyssa Bradford enlists Eric Shaw to make a documentary about her father-in-law, a ninety-five-year-old millionaire whose past is wrapped in mystery.
In the old man's hometown, Shaw discovers a spring whose waters have unfathomable powers and a glorious domed hotel where movie stars, presidents, athletes, and mobsters once mingled. The hotel has recently been restored to its former grandeur. But something else has been restored, too--a long-forgotten evil that will stop at nothing to settle a decades-old score.
It started with a documentary. The beautiful Alyssa Bradford approaches Eric Shaw to unearth the life story of her father-in-law, Campbell Bradford, a 95-year-old billionaire whose childhood is wrapped in mystery. Eric grabs the job, even though the only clues to Bradford's past are his hometown and an antique water bottle he's kept his entire life.
In Bradford's hometown, Eric discovers an extraordinary past--a glorious domed hotel where movie stars, presidents, athletes, and mobsters once intermingled. Long derelict, the hotel has just been restored to its former grandeur.
But something else has been restored too--a long-forgotten evil that will stop at nothing to settle a decades-old score. And with every move, Eric inches closer to the center of the building storm.
About the Author
Michael Koryta (pronounced ko-ree-ta) is the New York Times bestselling author of nine novels, most recently THE PROPHET. His last three novels, THE RIDGE, THE CYPRESS HOUSE, and SO COLD THE RIVER were all New York Times notable books and nominated for several national and international awards. In addition to winning the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, his novel ENVY THE NIGHT was selected as a Reader's Digest condensed book. Koryta's work has been translated into more than twenty languages. A former private investigator and newspaper reporter, Koryta graduated from Indiana University with a degree in criminal justice. He currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and Bloomington, Indiana.