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River's End

River's End

4.3 161
by Nora Roberts

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A thrilling "page-turner"* from the #1 New York Times bestselling author

The author of Dance Upon the Air presents her most seductively suspenseful tale-a story of one woman's shattered innocence, a terrifying search for truth, and a heart's journey toward healing.


A thrilling "page-turner"* from the #1 New York Times bestselling author

The author of Dance Upon the Air presents her most seductively suspenseful tale-a story of one woman's shattered innocence, a terrifying search for truth, and a heart's journey toward healing.

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
Olivia Tanner was born into a family of Hollywood royalty, but when she was a child, something terrifying changed her life forever. When she was just a toddler, her mother was brutally murdered by a very human monster. The man who came after little Olivia was her own father, movie star and sometime coke addict Sam Tanner. In his hands, scissors bloodied from the murder of Julie McBride, Olivia's mother.

Frank Brady is the cop who shows up at the scene and protects Olivia. He is thrilled to put the murderous Sam into prison for the rest of his life, as is Olivia's aunt. But is the case closed?

Another thread enters this wonderful novel and lightens the darkness. Noah Brady, Frank's son, is a kid at the time of the murder but even then is aware of the powerful effect it had on his dad. As he grows up, he becomes curious about Olivia. When he reaches adolescence, Noah and his parents take a trip up to the Pacific Northwest, where Olivia and her grandparents now live. Even as youngsters, it's nearly love at first sight. Later, when he's a reporter for the Los Angeles Times, Noah makes a trip to Olivia's college dorm. When he sees her, he knows it's all over for him: Cupid has struck. The only problem is, he's really there to reopen the case so that he can write about it — and Olivia sees right through him.

As they both grow to adulthood in their very separate lives, Olivia is still haunted by fears and doubts about that fateful night. Noah, now a successful true-crime writer, is virtually obsessed with it. When Sam Tanner contacts him and tells him that he wants totellthe whole story, Noah hopes that he can somehow heal the past for himself and for Olivia.

But perhaps the most terrifying days are yet to come — for Sam Tanner is out.

And he wants to see Olivia more than anything in the world, to finish the business that began that night so many years earlier.

Do not miss River's End. It is a truly thrilling romantic novel, part terrifying and part exultant, and all Nora. Nora Roberts has become a master storyteller in any and all genres, but she's showing her loyalty to her huge romance audience with one of her most profound stories of true love, which shares space with a thrill ride in this surefire bestseller.

Jessi Rose Lucas

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Her signature florid style again serving a suspenseful mystery combined with a fated romance, bestselling Roberts (Hot Ice) tells a Helter Skelter-type Hollywood horror story lurid with murder, drugs and insanity. One summer night in 1979, four-year-old Olivia Tanner finds her doped-up father, Sam, bloodied shears in hand, poised over the dead body of her movie-star mom. Haunted by the image of "the monster" pursuing her, Olivia is sent to live with her grandparents in the Pacific Northwest, where she is sheltered from her memories by towering Douglas firs. Two decades later, the specter of the "monster" returns. From prison, her father urges young investigative reporter Noah Brady — son of the police detective who discovered Olivia after the murder — to research the crime. Noah accepts this task eagerly, heedless of Olivia's rebuffs and undeterred by violence and danger, especially after Olivia begins to remember the crime. The denouement brings both of them into a bloody confrontation with the past. Roberts's careful research, particularly into the ecosystems of the forests of the Pacific Northwest, makes for vibrant background detail. Her artful manipulation of the plot, contrived so that amour and horror escalate in tandem, reaffirms her ability to deliver entertaining fiction.
Library Journal
A classic case of domestic violence or something more sinister? Four-year-old Olivia's testimony put her father behind bars for the murder of her mother. Twenty years later Sam Tanner wants to tell his story, and he wants true-crime writer Noah Brady, the son of the cop who arrested him, to write it. Noah agrees because the story has haunted him all his life. Olivia is first appalled, then curious. Noah is everything she had ever imagined, but he is probing deeply painful memories. Sandra Burr adds her considerable talents to this tightly written romantic thriller from the author of Inner Harbor (Audio Reviews, LJ 4/15/99). Her child's voice is eerily memorable, her teenage Livy aches of womanhood, but she shines with the adult Livy and Noah. Their sexual tension is palpable, and the story's suspense is even more tightly strung. Highly recommended for all fiction collections.--Jodi L. Israel, Jamaica Plain, MA Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
YA-Life changes completely for four-year-old Olivia McBride the night she encounters the monster standing over her mother holding a pair of scissors covered with blood. Until then, she had been the only child of one of Hollywood's most glittering couples, dearly loved by her parents and loving them in return. But the monster, with her father's face, takes away her mother forever. She is whisked away from Hollywood and all the publicity surrounding the murder and her father's subsequent trial and imprisonment to live with her mother's loving and protective family. Growing up in the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest, Olivia's monster is almost forgotten until a young writer, contacted by her father, agrees to write a book about the events of that night so many years ago. Thus, the monster that has been at bay for so long is reawakened. This novel, with elements of suspense and romance, also has vivid and atmospheric geographical descriptions.-Pamela B. Rearden, Centreville Regional Library, Fairfax County, VA Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Though Roberts (The Reef, 1998, etc.) never writes badly, her newest mystery romance is more inconsistent than most.

Little Olivia MacBride, daughter of two golden Hollywood superstars, wakes up one night to see her coked-up father holding her mother's bloody body, a scissors in his hand. After her dad is led off to prison, Liv is sent to live with her grandparents, who run a successful lodge in the Olympic rain forest on the Washington coast-a location far across the continent from the Maryland shores of Roberts's Quinn trilogy, but one that allows her to explore another place of life-giving scenic wonder. And when Liv grows up and becomes a naturalist/guide, she gets to take us on lots of eye-dazzling tours. Into her sheltered paradise comes Noah Brady, the son of the police detective who arrested Liv's father and has been her friend since childhood. Noah has grown up to be a bestselling true-crime writer, and, against Liv's will, he wants to write his next book about the MacBride murder case. (Liv's dad, about to be released from San Quentin, is dying of brain cancer.) Though Liv fights her attraction to Noah, he's a persistent boy, and on an extended and very sexy camping trip, the two become lovers. Meanwhile, the real murderer, whose identity will probably be obvious to most readers, leaves his own trail of violence up to Washington and a final prime-evil shoot-out.

Added to Roberts's poorly drawn mystery and her interlude of swell lusty love is her usual theme of how wounded children and inner children are healed and nurtured by good nuclear families.

From the Publisher
“A page-turner.”—The Washington Post Book World

“Roberts keeps the suspense building…Her fans will love this book.”Chicago Sun-Times

"River's End moves at a frantic pace…Great descriptions…Heart-stopping encounters between Olivia and the obviously smitten Noah.”Chicago Tribune

“A plot that delivers both suspense and romance.”Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

“Roberts weaves a story like no one else.”Denver Rocky Mountain News

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
“Roberts keeps the suspense building…Her fans will love this book.” —Chicago Sun-Times

"River's End moves at a frantic pace…Great descriptions…Heart-stopping encounters between Olivia and the obviously smitten Noah.”—Chicago Tribune

“A plot that delivers both suspense and romance.”—Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

“Roberts weaves a story like no one else.”—Denver Rocky Mountain News

Meet the Author

Nora Roberts is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than 200 novels. She is also the author of the bestselling In Death series written under the pen name J. D. Robb. There are more than 500 million copies of her books in print.

Brief Biography

Keedysville, Maryland
Date of Birth:
Place of Birth:
Silver Spring, Maryland

Customer Reviews

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River's End 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 161 reviews.
Anonymous 9 months ago
OMG this story is rock solid. So good I cudnt put it down. Oh I wish there had been just a little more to wrap up the ending farther.. That's my only complaint. I just think with such drama, heartbreak, turn twisting mystery & above all LOVE there shud have been an Epiloge. BUT I'm creedy LOL, RHop
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Have read everything of Nora's and I still think this was one of her very best. Nora is the great escape, as you live her characters. Her books are always a great escape.
laurierobb_MI More than 1 year ago
Oh wow...suspense, thrills, and I can't help but think how this mirrored some of my life. I'm going to get every other book Nora Roberts has done!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Actually my mum took this book from the library... But I was kinda bored and started reading this one. And what can I say? It was great! I couldn't put the book aside, because it was so exiting. I recommend this one, if you don't like those usual love stories, where it's all about those 2 lovers. It is worth reading.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the first book I read by Nora Roberts and never be the last. It's fast-pace, intriguing and a page-turner, with a great hook and great plot. All I can say this book is excellent! Definitely a must-read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is my first Nora Roberts book and OH MY GOSH.....I read this one while at the beach and ended up with a major burn because I couldn't put it down...finished it in a day....I was totally engrossed in every part of the book....the suspense, the romance...why...I could even say that I fell in love with Noah Brady!!! I would recommend this one to anyone who just wants to get swept away for while....because it stays with you long after you read it....
Njkinny More than 1 year ago
Twenty years ago, a gruesome murder destroyed many lives and Olivia was one of them. Daughter of the fairy tale couple of Hollywood, Julie and Sam, Olivia was supposed to have a prefect life but the sudden and horrible murder of her mother left her father in prison and Olivia, the sole witness to the crime is taken away by her grandparents to a place far far away. Sheltered and kept away from the harrowing details of that night, Olivia has only vague memories of the murder and when Noah Brady, a writer starts writing a book on the events of that night, she is forced to look back. Noah wants to reconstruct the night and bring to light the complete events from an unbiased perspective. It also helps that Sam Tanner is willing to talk now. Will Olivia and her family be able to look back and brave all the heartache all over again? Was Sam Tanner correct when he said that he didn't kill his wife? Can Olivia finally let go and look forward to a life Noah is willing to show her? Will she survive this time when she knows that the "Monster walks again"? Nora Roberts is an author who can write both a romantic suspense with grisly crimes and soft, sensuous romances with equal ease. River's End is another proof of that. Nora creates an atmosphere of darkness, mystery, hatred, anger and fear. Olivia was the sole witness to fer mother's murder and has always feared that night. According to her the man who killed her mother was a monster with her father's face. The characterization is beautifully done and they are the base on which the story flows. Olivia's father, the man who told her funny stories and who loved her so much seems like a good man but then he turns into a monster who shouts, throws things and finally kills her mother. People with strong characters and varied facets to their personality, this book gives the reader a deep insight into human nature and the delicate balance between good and bad. Olivia and Noah have a complex relationship and Nora gives a romance that isn't soft nor is it the cozy type. Olivia is struggling with her past and her doubts about herself. Noah is determined to make Olivia accept his love. I loved the scenes involving them and could empathize with them. The plot is not that exceptional but the fluid narration and expert skill of presentation makes the book so engrossing the you would feel compelled to finish it in one sitting. Having read ingenious mysteries and being a fan of the mystery genre, I was able to pick out the end beforehand but this, in no way, lessened my interest and I was hooked in the story from start to finish. The beautiful and vivid descriptions of places, events and people add more appeal to the book. The author is able to bring the story alive and running in the minds of the readers and I felt as if I was right there in the story, seeing and feeling everything that was going on in the book. All in all, a book that will hook you and thrill you. I give River's End a 4.5 out of 5 and recommend it to everyone. A book that will take you to the posh localities of LA and into the lives of celebrities, to the faraway serenity of nature with beautiful flora and fauna and a peace that eludes us in the cities, this is a book that you should read if you love a good plot with plenty of thrill and great characters. This review is also available on the blog Njkinny's World of Books..
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was an amazing book, the first book I read by Nora Roberts, and it was hard to put down! I really recommend this book if you like romance, suspense, mystery, and crime.
akc812 11 months ago
My first Nora Roberts book....loved it!! I was hooked from the first few pages. Already bought 2 of her other novels after reading this book. Full of suspense with a nice bit of romance.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From foxtail
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this while i was in flordia and once i started it i couldnt put it down after i finished it i was so burned from sitting by the pool while i read it
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another great book by Nora Roberts! Could not put it down!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book would be wonderful on the big screen!!!! I would love to have a follow up to Noah and Livvy! Great characters! I would love to read a continued story on their lives.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
angela_1876 More than 1 year ago
Very good read. Page turner, did not want to put down!
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sunnyCG More than 1 year ago
This is one of Nora Roberts better books and I really enjoyed it. I would recommend it to anyone who likes a good mystery.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Were's the medicine cat?" Flutter asked impatiantly. (I dont know how to spell : impataintly. But you know what im trying to spell right? Im trying to spell not pataintly. But i dont even know how to spell patiantly. Oh well.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't put it down !
Goofygirll More than 1 year ago
This book had you experiencing all of your emotions.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read its amazing and NOT WORTHLESS