River Road 

Ok guys, I know I’ve been a little MIA, but I’ve just been so busy! Getting settled into my new job, writing my next novel and re-enrolling in school, I’ve been trying to figure out how to manage all of my time. Forgive me for my absence. I may take a little longer on posts than before but bare with me while I get used to everything. I’m going to jump back in with my Book of the Day, “River Road.” 

Book of the Day

“River Road” by Carol Goodman

Nan Lewis—a creative writing professor at a state university in upstate New York—is driving home from a faculty holiday party after finding out she’s been denied tenure. On her way, she hits a deer, but when she gets out of her car to look for it, the deer is nowhere to be found. Eager to get home and out of the oncoming snowstorm, Nan is forced to leave her car at the bottom of her snowy driveway to wait out the longest night of the year—and the lowest point of her life…

The next morning, Nan is woken up by a police officer at her door with terrible news—one of her students, Leia Dawson, was killed in a hit-and-run on River Road the night before. And because of the damage to her car, Nan is a suspect. In the days following the accident, Nan finds herself shunned by the same community that rallied around her when her own daughter was killed in an eerily similar accident six years prior. When Nan begins finding disturbing tokens that recall the death of Nan’s own daughter, Nan suspects that the two accidents are connected.

As she begins to dig further, she discovers that everyone around her, including Leia, is hiding secrets. But can she uncover them, clear her name, and figure out who really killed Leia before her reputation is destroyed for good? 

I was super anxious to read this novel just because it’s by Carol Goodman! Everyone knows my favorite book is also by her, “The Lake of Dead Languages.” (If you’ve never read I highly recommend it.) I haven’t read anything from her in a while so my excitement level was really high. 

The story is told very gradually. It isn’t a high thriller novel, more of a mystery and suspense. Which I find these things to be true to the writing style of Carol Goodman. 

The story follows Nan, a college professor who is also an alcoholic. After a night of “light” drinking she hits a deer on her way home, but was it really a deer? The accident happens in the exact spot that her young daughter was killed years before. 

All evidence points to Nan to having killed her student, Leia, someone that everyone seemed to loved. She pleads her innocence and sets out to prove it after she sees that it doesn’t look too great for her. She begins to discover many secrets about her students and colleagues. Even so, Nan is sort of an unreliable character. Which makes you wonder what really happened, who is everyone really, and what to believe. 

I did figure out the mystery before it was revealed. Not because it was an easy find, but because I’d like to think I make a pretty good detective. Also, I must say I was disappointed in the portrayal of the black characters. They seemed very stereotypical to me. However, those things aside “River Road” was a good and very quick read. Mystery lovers check it out!


What are you guys currently reading? What are some of your favorite mystery books?  


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