BOOK REVIEW: The River At Night by Erica Ferencik 4.5/5 stars (worth it!)

Scrappymags 3 word review: Run!!!!! (One word. Booooyah!)

Shortest Summary Ever: 4 friends in their 40’s  acquiesce to the pleadings of their girl-pack leader (the pretty one, of course) and embark on an Outward Bound-like white water rafting trip in Maine. Bad stuff goes down. That’s pretty much the basics.

Rafting in my mind:                  Rafting in reality:

What’s good under the hood: The dynamic of the friendships between the girls is massively relatable. I could easily picture my college gal-pal crew on an adventure like this, though regrettably, while I’m not the pretty one, an adventure like this sounds like one of my classic hair-brained ideas. Sorry girls. The bickering and grievances between the girls is dead-on; heck who hasn’t had sister-like tiffs with their friends? This made me giggle as I could easily swap the book characters with my crew.

The River is a quick read, compact and would be a great audio book for in the car (unless you’re on your way to a white water rafting trip). Sharply paced. Direct. Edge-of-your-seat moments though not too scary (again, unless you’re about to go white water rafting). Definitely worth the read.

Highly recommended to: adventure seekers, female readers with a tight group of friends (book would 80% appeal to women I believe), those who like outdoor adventure or dream of it, those who want a quick escape book.

What’s bad or made me mad: I actually wanted more. Not quite Deliverance more (that movie scarred me for life), but I wanted to be more terrified. The problem was I accidentally read a review that compared the book to Deliverance. I HATE that because I believe that’s what set my expectation level and that made me think the absolute worst, so what ensued wasn’t well.. that bad. I think the problem is that terror level would require a longer book which many authors (ok publishers) seem to avoid but I prefer intense and riveting more than quick and efficient. This book could have ruined my white-water rafting goals for life.

A huge thanks to NetGalley and Gallery, Threshold, Pocket Books for an advanced copy in exchange for this review.

This entry was posted in DIY.


  1. ScrappyMags says:

    I agree about the land almost as another character – very indepth and unique! I see your point about how those events could happen, but I guess that’s the great part about fiction – it COULD happen and that was the scary part. It’s tough for me (more of an indoor girl) to fathom the vastness of parts of the U.S. I always think – well isn’t there a town/road/store, etc close? LOL!!

  2. Hosting says:

    Desolate, menacing and untouched land essentially become the main character for a time, overtaken only by the ferocity of the river on which the female characters are to go rafting on.I’m not going to lie, I found myself wanting while reading The River at Night. I just couldn’t see how the events in the book could actually happen, but maybe that’s just me.Overall though, it was a gripping read for the most part.

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