Video: Book Review: The River at Night by Erica Ferencik

  • Read my full review here.
  • Watch this and other bookish videos on YouTube here.

Deliverance for chicks! The Descent but with water Instead of caves! The River Wild, with Meryl Streep morphed into four friends! Sex and the City goes to Appalachia!

Okay, okay, we all know this type of story has been done before. But Erica Ferencik tells hers so well, you’d be missing out to skip it.

There are a lot of thrills in The River at Night, but the real thrill is seeing how Wini responds to the conflict.

Wini’s life is already falling apart. With a failed marriage and career and the recent loss of her brother, she’s already at a horrible point of her life.

And then she goes rafting.

You know, in the fictional stories, characters seem to thrive on conflict. They don’t cower, make missteps, or even use to reflect. The main character is the brave hero who saves the day. Call it the Bruce Willis effect. Don’t we all wish we could be the lone gunman in the skyscraper, screaming “Yippee-ki-yay, motherf*****!” and saving the day?

Wini beings more of a human element, though she does rise heroically to the occasion. She’s able to draw on her swimming ability, but she’s also full of fear and doubt. Her mortality is bracingly clear, and she fears every brave act will be her last one.

Compare this to other works, or let it stand alone; either way, it’s worth jumping in.