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River bodies

First edition.
Seattle : Thomas & Mercer, [2018]
Physical Description:
290 pages ; 22 cm
Returning home to Portland, Pennsylvania care for her ailing father, the former police chief, Becca Kingsley is drawn into a murder investigation that is linked to a twenty-year-old cold case and that causes her to start questioning all her past relationships as dark secrets come to light.


Call Number
Katchur, K.
MYSTERY Katchur, K.

On Order



In this dark, gripping mystery, a brutal murder unearths old secrets that should have stayed buried.

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.

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

On one side of the Delaware River is Portland, Pa., the childhood home of veterinarian Becca Kingsley, the heroine of this suspenseful series launch from Katchur (The Sisters of Blue Mountain); on the other side is Columbia, N.J., where Becca lives with a handsome litigator who's unfaithful to her. On her mother's advice, Becca visits her dying father, who was once Portland's police chief; she became estranged from him before her parents' divorce on account of his infidelity. When a corpse is found near the river, Becca gets involved in the case, since she may have seen the killer while she was out running. Det. Parker Reed, formerly a close friend of Becca's, investigates. Parker links the new murder to one with the same m.o. that occurred years earlier, in which Becca's father played a key investigative role. Fragments of Becca's memory involving the first murder begin returning, and the danger escalates as buried secrets emerge from the past. A possible romance between Becca and Parker adds to the intrigue. A gripping ending will leave readers eager for the sequel. Agent: Carly Watters, P.S. Literary. (Nov.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Kirkus Review

In this series opener, an emotionally vulnerable woman is drawn back to her hometownright into the middle of a murder investigation.Becca Kingsley left the Pennsylvania side of the Delaware River years ago and is now a veterinary surgeon in New Jersey. She loves her work, and she loves her German shepherd, Romy, who rarely leaves her side. She even still loves her live-in boyfriend, Matt, a patent attorney, but he's cheated on her one too many times. His latest lie prompts her to flee back to Portland, Pennsylvania, to her estranged father's bedside. He's dying of cancer, and while the gulf between them is wideshe's never forgiven him for making her go to boarding school for her senior year of high school or the constant philandering that drove her mother awayshe's determined to find closure. When a man's body is found in the river, shot, gutted, and field dressed like a deer, it hearkens back to a similar crime committed many years ago and to the dark deeds of the local biker club, the Scions. It leads law enforcement, including Pennsylvania State Police detectiveand Becca's first loveParker Reed, to an enforcer for the Scions who has known Becca since she was a child. Then there was that man Becca saw near the river during her morning run right around the time of the murder. Unfortunately, he saw her too. The narrative toggles between Becca's childhood and the current murder investigation, outlining Becca's fraught relationship with her father, who was Portland's former police chief, and the symbiotic hold the Scions have on the town. This is not a whodunit. The perpetrator is revealed immediately, and although the author tries, it's tough to make him too sympathetic after committing such a heinous crime. Nonetheless, Katchur is an engaging writer who ably navigates the dynamics of small-town life and the darkness that lurks beneath the mundane.Easily digestible, if not groundbreaking, suspense with a tense family drama at its core. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Library Journal Review

When Becca returns to Portland, PA, the small town where she grew up, to escape an unhealthy relationship and visit her dying police chief father, she doesn't expect to come face to face with her high school love, Parker. Parker is the lead detective investigating a body discovered in the river-a case with uncanny similarities to a 20-year-old cold case. John is the enforcer of the local motorcycle gang, the Scions, and he is watching Becca. Does she remember what she saw when she was a child? And what did Becca's father know? Expertly performed by Lauren Ezzo, the story flows well with artful descriptions and tight dialog despite some minor plot holes. Katchur finely captures the feel of a small-town murder; it's never clear who knows what and how hard they'll work to keep their secrets from escaping. Verdict A solid first in a series. Recommended to fans of CJ Tudor's The Chalk Man. ["An engaging, solid mystery that will captivate lovers of the genre, especially those drawn to regional settings": LJ 11/1/18 review of the Thomas & Mercer hc.]-Terry Ann Lawler, Burton Barr Lib., Phoenix © Copyright 2019. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.