Wednesday, June 19, 2024


Like many of the new breed of acclaimed indie horror authors, Boris Bacic started as a Creepypasta short story writer on Reddit. He since has become a popular novelist with a series of unrelated small-town horror paperbacks, including 2022’s Retown.

An Oregon software salesman named Jason is dispatched to close a deal in the remote town of Riverton. The town is so off-the-beaten-path that even his car GPS approaches the dirt roads and snowy mountains with great trepidation. The closer he gets to Riverton, the more he regrets the trip as his cell phone dies and a stranger warns him to stay away.

While on the outskirts of Riverton, Jason witnesses something that was truly rattling and scary for both the reader and the character. Upon his arrival into Riverton, the author does a great job of creating an uneasy vibe. Everything is off. No one behaves normally. The locals fluctuate between indifference, rudeness and a passive hostility. Jason can’t wait to leave, and get home to his family hours away.

But it’s not that easy.

The Amazon book description gives away a major plot point that occurs 22% into the book (shame on the publisher), but I won’t spoil it here. The upshot is that leaving Riverton isn’t as easy as driving over the mountain. The entire town is under the spell of a supernatural force of some kind, and the townsfolk seem to be resigned to just lie back and take it. Could Jason be the resistance the citizens of Riverton need to break their chains?

Once the mystery of Riverton is revealed, the book stops being as scary and becomes a giant escape room mystery. Fans of the TV show Lost or Blake Crouch’s Wayward Pines will feel right at home here. The revelations about the town, its caretakers, and its power are dealt out sparingly throughout the book. Some readers will be satisfied with the answers, and others will not. But no one will deny the creativity and inventiveness of this eerie novel. Recommended. 

Buy a copy of the book HERE

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