THE RIDGE by Michael Koryta

Book Quote:

“All of these names…could be linked by two factors: death and proximity to Blade Ridge. The manner of death, though, those tales of trestle falls and stampeding horses and electrocutions, turned any legitimate concern about the road’s safety into a bizarre raving about…what? Some sort of cursed ground? A karmic disaster zone?”

Book Review:

Review by Eleanor Bukowsky  (JUN 10, 2011)

Michael Koryta scores again with The Ridge, a thriller set in an isolated and rugged area of Eastern Kentucky. Inexplicable events are happening near a hilltop known as Blade Ridge. Sawyer County Deputy Sheriff Kevin Kimble and his colleagues get involved after an eccentric old drunk named Wyatt French is found dead in his lighthouse, an apparent suicide. No one understands why French spent time and money building a wooden lighthouse “in the middle of nowhere.” French had his reasons, but what he knew was so bizarre that no sane person would ever believe him.

Sheriff Kevin Kimble, who patrols Whitman and its environs, has a history of his own. While trying to protect a woman named Jacqueline Mathis from her abusive husband, Kimble was shot in the back. He still has lingering pain and stiffness, but knows he was lucky to survive. Meanwhile, a widow named Audrey Clark is carrying on the work of her late husband, David, a wildlife preservationist. She, along with a small paid staff and volunteers, has relocated sixty-seven exotic big cats (tigers, cougars, lions, and leopards who had suffered mistreatment at the hands of their owners) to a rescue center near Blade Ridge Road. Among the animals is Ira, a beautiful and unique black cougar who is crafty, powerful, and deadly when angered. Observing the goings-on is sixty-year old Roy Darmus, a veteran reporter whose newspaper has folded. Roy is extremely curious about strange episodes of violence that have marred the tranquility of his town. When he starts digging into Whitman’s history, he makes some astounding discoveries.

Koryta has created a richly delineated cast of characters who face extraordinary challenges and grave danger. The gripping plot is chilling and eerily suspenseful. Michael Koryta is a consummate craftsman whose expressive dialogue, evocative descriptive writing, and atmospheric story draw us into his menacing world. Some readers may hesitate to turn the pages, fearing that terrible things are about happen. Still, they will be riveted by this intense story and will continue reading until they finally learn the ghastly secret of The Ridge.

AMAZON READER RATING: from 46 readers
PUBLISHER: Little, Brown and Company (June 8, 2011)
REVIEWER: Eleanor Bukowsky
AUTHOR WEBSITE: Michael Koryta
EXTRAS: Excerpt (see widget)
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June 10, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Thriller/Spy/Caper, US South

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