Friday, October 12, 2018

[Book Review] River Bodies by Karen Katchur

Book Review of River Bodies by Karen Katchur

River Bodies by Karen Katchur is a totally engrossing read that I struggled to put down.

If you enjoy lighter thrillers with a heavy focus on characters and their relationships, and just a dash of gore, then this is one that you definitely have to pick up!

Full disclosure: I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my review in any way.

Let's dive in!

River Bodies by Karen Katchur

A body just turned up in the small town of Portland, Pennsylvania. The crime is eerily similar to a twenty-year-old cold case: another victim, brutally murdered, found in the Delaware River. Lead detective Parker Reed is intent on connecting the two murders, but the locals are on lockdown, revealing nothing.

The past meets the present when Becca Kingsley, who returns to Portland to be with her estranged but dying father, runs into Parker, her childhood love. As the daughter of the former police chief, Becca’s quickly drawn into the case. Coming home has brought something ominous to the surface—memories long buried, secrets best kept hidden. Becca starts questioning all her past relationships, including one with a man who’s watched over her for years. For the first time, she wonders if he’s more predator than protector.

In a small town where darkness hides in plain sight, the truth could change Becca’s life—or end it.

My thoughts:
First things first... THAT COVER!! I'm obsessed. I hope they don't change a thing about it when it's properly released. I love the leaves in the water and the font and textures that they chose are just perfect!

Oh my goodness, the storytelling in this book was just wonderful. I really enjoyed the way that the family drama was woven into the mystery. I also really enjoyed that the story was told from varying perspectives so you could really learn more about each character and how each of their brains worked. That really added a lovely complexity to the story!

While labeled a thriller, I would definitely say that the main focus was on the relationships between the various characters.

The relationship between Becca and Matt had my blood absolutely boiling; Matt was such a garbage person. I could not stand him from the second he was introduced, and his character only made me angrier and angrier the more he was mentioned. He was so uncomfortably controlling and selfish.

On the flip side of that, the relationship between Becca and Parker was adorable and heartwarming. Even though I disagreed with one of her choices... I did enjoy the majority of their interactions; some stressful and some just adorable.

The relationship between Becca and her father was a bit triggering for me with my family history... So I found quite a bit of that difficult to read. However, it was wonderfully done. The author really captured a lot of the heartbreak, distrust, and pain that goes along with a rocky situation like that.

The relationship between Becca and John was interesting. I loved the varying emotions I had as we learned more about the two of them through the chapters and sections that jumped back into the past. At first I was totally weirded out by John, but then it was a rollercoaster of emotion toward him after that.

Of course, there were various other side characters, each of whom were interesting in their roles!

Overall, the writing style was a style that I really enjoyed! There were a few typos here and there, but as this was an ARC, I'm sure they'll be fixed before the book is released on November 1st.

When I went to log this book on Goodreads and saw that it was labeled as "Northampton County #1," I wanted to cheer! I would love to see where this story goes next!

My favorite passages:
It only took a second for a tragedy to occur.

It had taken all the courage she could muster to bring up her childhood, where the dark corners of the past lurked.

My final thoughts:
While a bit triggering to me at times with my family history, this one was a book that I really struggled to put down! I just loved the characters and I found the storyline so interesting! I loved how everything played out in the end and how the main character worked through all of her troubles.

I definitely recommend giving this one a read! This is yet another thriller that I would love to see turned into a film!

Thanks for reading!
Snag your copy of this one today! It's just perfect for fall reading!


  1. That cover is really great! I like when thrillers are told from multiple perspectives, because people are always lying and it's nice to get more information.

  2. Looks like you've found a new series to enjoy!

  3. Sounds like a thriller with some decent characters for a change. Some bad ones too but at least they’re not all bad. Fun!

    1. I miss the characters already! I can't wait for book two!

  4. Sounds like a great Fall read, and I like that it does well with the characterization.


  5. I'm also in love with that cover! I really like thrillers and this is something I'd pick up.

  6. This definitely sounds like a fascinating read! Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us :)

  7. This sounds like a great read. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it.

  8. I am glad you loved this one so much! And it sounds like this one was definitely catered to your reading taste. I am all about character relationships so I know I am going to love this triller :D