The Drowning, J.P. Smith, 2018
My favorite quote: “Joey must have moved the moment the shutter opened. Because his face, out of all the others, was slightly blurred. As if he were already existing in another time, midway between life and death.”
Notable characters: Joey Proctor, the little boy who gets left on the raft; Alex Mason, the d-bag camp counselor who left him there
Most memorable scene: What Ben and Nick Wheeler happened upon during their hunting trip
Greatest strengths: Clear, concise writing
Standout achievements: Once you start, you won’t be able to stop — and when it’s over, you’ll just keep thinking about it
Fun Facts: When the author was eight years old, he was at camp, and even though he didn’t know how to swim, a counselor left him on a raft and told he had to either swim back or stay on the raft and die. That experience inspired this book.
Other media: N/A
What it taught me: There is power (and frustration) in indeterminate endings
How it inspired me: I loved the ghost stories in the beginning. This was an effective technique that really upped the creep factor and added a supernatural feel to the book without actually going there. I’ll be keeping that in mind.
Additional thoughts: I spent many hours thinking about this book after I finished it. Particularly the ending. There’s something more going on here, I’m sure of it … I just haven’t figured it out yet.
My rating: 4.5 of 5
Haunt me: alistaircross.com