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**** - Red River Seven


RED RIVER SEVEN

AJ RYAN

****

Seven strangers - all bearing weapons but with no memory of who they are - must band together and undertake a terrifying journey into the heart of darkness


A man awakes on a boat at sea with no memory of who or where he is. He's not alone - there are six others, each with a unique set of skills. None of them can remember their names. All of them possess a gun.


When a message appears on the onboard computer - Proceeding to Point A - the group agrees to work together to survive whatever is coming.


But as the boat moves through the mist-shrouded waters, divisions begin to form. Who is directing them and to what purpose? Why can't they remember anything?


And what are the screams they can hear beyond the mist?


MY REVIEW

****


Seven strangers wake up onboard a ship with a preset destination. None of them can remember who they are, but a mysterious phone call from the satellite phone throws up more questions than it answers…


I really enjoy locked-room style mysteries, thrillers and horror books so Red River Seven was right up my street. It’s a short book and it feels extremely fast paced as orders are followed from the voice on the telephone giving them missions and drama ensues on the boat in-between these tasks as well. I would actually say it’s a little too fast-paced in places, particularly at the end which almost felt rushed. It’s rare in my reviews that I suggest adding some more content and pages, but I think it would have rounded this book out in a good way and allowed for the ending to have more of an impact, in this case.


Although sometimes seven main characters can feel like a lot to keep track of, I actually didn’t feel that I really empathised with any of the characters, even the ‘leads’ who stick it out until the end. This is mainly down to the problem of them all having no memory to start with which means you don’t feel like you can properly get to know them. Each character also has a strength or job that makes them useful in this environment – from a Detective to an army soldier, to scientists and mountaineers. However, this is mainly explored or found out from the characters just knowing and sharing a lot of specific information about, for example types of gun or heights of a mountain which seemed very unrealistic.


The plot itself reminded me a lot of another horror book which I really enjoyed (I won’t name it to avoid spoilers) and I did enjoy the creepiness of the setting. There are a lot of unanswered questions and some convenient plot-points which didn’t feel realistic, but I was gripped throughout and enjoyed reading it. I also liked how information was drip-fed to the reader (and the characters) which kept me reading to find out more.


Overall Red River Seven is a gripping horror read, it has it’s flaws with a rushed ending and unlikeable characters but it’s well worth a read this Halloween season! Thank you to NetGalley, Little Brown Book Group UK and Orbit Books for the chance to read the ARC in exchange for an honest review.


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