Cover Image: Road of Bones

Road of Bones

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The Road of Bones, formally known as Kolyma Highway is a mass grave, a place where the political prisoners Jospeh Stalin had imprisoned would work until they dropped dead, from cold, exhaustion, hunger or all three. Felix Teigland, Teig, is a producer of documentaries and he sees the opportunity of a lifetime in making a program about the Road of Bones.Accompanied by a local guide, Teig heads to the nearest village to begin his project, but they arrive to find the village completely empty, except for a little girl. What follows is classic Golden, a literate horror story to keep you up at night

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Holy moly! This scared the freaking living daylights out of me! Brrr!!! Trembling! Tiptoeing on my fingers! Feeling like somebody will suddenly appear out of shadows and snatch me out!

I’m sold as soon as I read the opening scene: in the middle of nowhere, getting stuck in truck, slippery roads, freezing weather, barely regaining control of the car, feeling the cold slap of your death against your cheek. Our two moviemakers won their first duel against the death , moving through the wilderness of Siberia.

Teig is the brain, dreamchaser, addicted to find the best stories and share them with the audience, a documentary producer. He’s an opportunist concept creator, selling her ideas, making people invest to his dreams even though some of them are doomed to fail, money traps of investors!

His new mission is focusing on a thrilling project taking place in the wilderness of freezing Siberia! Imagine a place where nearly 600 thousand people, laborers under Stalin’s imperative to build a road, is the same place they are buried beneath. That legendary, haunted, ultra creepy road along the Kolyma is the place where Felix Teigland a. k. a. Teig and his longtime cameraman friend Prentiss are headed. They think this dreamy project could bring the reputation, fame and money they have been pursuing throughout their entire filming careers.

A very talkative but also friendly guide accompanies them. Gas, food and quick bar stop for socializing with townies later, they bump into a local woman who is stranded on the road because of car problem, eventually joins their trip to the village.

But they didn’t expect to find the entire village abandoned. Last standing person of the village is a catatonic seven years old girl who tells them a monster is coming to get her! Things are getting heated! And this little girl reminds Teig of her own sister who was captured and murdered on his watch. Of course he was also a child but he let his guilt feelings gnaw him slowly for years and now it’s time to confront his fears to help the little girl and finish what they started!

Tense, frightening, claustrophobic atmosphere, witty dialogues, heart pounding, engaging, intriguing pace makes you sit tight on your couch, face glued to the pages, fists clenched, nails biten, breaths held, reading without moving an inch, scaring to make a sound!

I love it! My kind of favorite high tension, suffocating, freaking thriller I highly recommend to genre lovers!

Special thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for sharing this digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest opinions.

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Make no bones about it, antlers and snow have never been more terrifying.
Road of Bones invites you to take an unforgettable ride through the forbidding wilderness of Siberia. And no, just because there are actual paved roads there it doesn’t make it any more inviting or welcoming. And yet the legendary road along the Kolyma is exactly where two longtime friends Tieg and Prentiss are headed, seeking fame and fortune, or at least a someversion there off.
It’s Tieg’s idea, one of the many ideas which over the years have made and often cost him and his friends money. Tieg’s an optimist, always on lookout for the next great story to make a documentary out of and he believes he found it here, in the snowed in remoteness of Siberia. The place is, of course, beyond haunted, with something like 600 000 people buried along it and beneath it, dead while laboring under Stalin’s imperative to create the great road. But what is such superstition to the cynical seen it all pair of first world adventurers.
And so off they go. And that’s where the novel’s first scene finds them. Nearly careening off to certain death. Regaining control, they finally arrive to meet their local guide and proceed to their destination, a tiny town at the end of the world, but once they arrive there, they find all its denizens gone, all but one small girl. And there’s something hungry out there after her, after them.
Time to get heroic, especially for Tieg, who has never gotten over his baby sister being abducted and murdered while on his watch, when they were both kids. For Prentiss and a local woman they pick up along the way, it’s more of an along for the ride sort of thing. And what a ride, the frying pan into the fire nightmarish trajectory through the snowed in place where every single thing, natural and otherwise, is trying to kill them.
At first it seemed like it might be too action forward of a story for me, but it quickly settled into proper and more measured psychological frights and turned out into an excellent production overall. Don’t know why I don’t read more of this guy. The writing’s really good, very dynamic, very vivid, has a certain cinematic quality to it, all while maintaining the appropriately bleak atmosphere and tone. Loved the use of real life events and local culture, customs and mythology. It’s Siberia, people… it doesn’t need a sign saying Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate. It’s understood. Didn’t quite help with surviving the latest heating wave, but certainly distracted from it. A Great fun read. A well crafted literary supernatural thriller.Recommended. Thanks Netgalley.

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320 pages

4 and 1 / 2 stars

Felix “Teig” Teigland is a documentary producer. It’s been awhile since he has had a hit. He and a friend decide to travel to the coldest little town in Siberia. Teig thinks it has possibilities for a new show.

Along the way, they pick up a very chatty guide. His English, however, is very good. They stp[ in a very small village for gas and food and Teig and his friend, who is a cameraman, meet some very nice local people. And the little bar is warm. Teig spots a very attractive woman, who leaves soon after they get there.

Back on the road, they come across the woman. Her vehicle broke down. They pick her up and drive on. When they finally get to the little (almost), village they are astounded to see that no one is present. It seems to be abandoned. Except for a nine-year old girl who is catatonic.

Then the weird begins to happen.

This is an amazing book. It took me quite a while to ponder what I was going to write in my review and what score I was going to give the novel. It is very well written and plotted. The gore is not excessive and is well done. The presence of the shaman and the animal spirits is original and adds a great deal to the suspense of the book. I truly enjoyed this book and will certainly look for more books from Mr. Golden.

I want to thank NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for forwarding to me a copy of this great book for me to read, enjoy and review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

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