The Current

A Novel
Length: 14 hrs and 27 mins
4 out of 5 stars (458 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In the dead of winter, outside a small Minnesota town, state troopers pull two young women and their car from the icy Black Root River. One is found downriver, drowned, while the other is found at the scene - half-frozen but alive.  

What happened was no accident, and news of the crime awakens the community's memories of another young woman who lost her life in the same river 10 years earlier and whose killer may still live among them.  

Determined to find answers, the surviving young woman soon realizes she's connected to the earlier unsolved case by more than just a river, and the deeper she plunges into her own investigation, the closer she comes to dangerous truths and to the violence that simmers just below the surface of her hometown.  

Grief, suspicion, the innocent, and the guilty - all stir to life in this cold Northern town where a young woman can come home but still not be safe. 

Brilliantly plotted and unrelentingly propulsive, The Current is a beautifully realized story about the fragility of life, the power of the past, and the need, always, to fight back.

©2019 Tim Johnston (P)2019 HighBridge Company

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    195
  • 4 Stars
    124
  • 3 Stars
    98
  • 2 Stars
    26
  • 1 Stars
    15

Performance

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    98
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    55
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    19
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    10

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    120
  • 3 Stars
    89
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    39
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    16

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Exceeded my expectations in every way

This is a beautiful, moving novel that I will not forget. Much, much more than a whodunnit, it's a book about family, community, friendship and the ever-present river flowing somewhere in the background all the time. Never strident, it captures the MeToo moment in its own subtle, understated way. Unlike many 10 hour plus audiobooks, this story used almost every minute well, developing complicated characters or advancing a very original plot. I am very glad I purchased this book.

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Where the heck is the rest of the book?

I am very angry that after listening for 14+ hours, the book has stopped with no real ending. How dare Mr. Johnston do this? On the other hand, the narrator is one of the best I've ever heard.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Lots of loose ends

The book does not make sense. I can count at least five story lines that were not closed. It switches back and forth from one incident to another and it is difficult to identify the book’s intended focus. It is not about the two girls in the car accident. Tim Johnston’s first book is much much better. I do not recommend The Current.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Didn't get far....

I got so annoyed with this book in the first few chapters that I quit listening and returned. The author keeps referring to some "secret" that had happened 10 years before, dancing around it, but never saying what it is. All the characters know about it and refer to it obliquely or think about it but afraid to speak of it. Of course the only one who doesn't know what they're referring to is the reader. I know this is a technique the author uses to get the reader engaged, but I found it contrived, manipulative, and annoying. Let's just describe the crime and then solve it without trying to create false intrigue.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Not my favorite

I gave this one a shot but honestly I didn't enjoy it I made it to the end but I am wishing I didn't, I want that time back.
A long, meandering story with so much beautiful descriptive language supporting nothing. And so many unanswered questions! I mean, a pretty important character disappears 3/4 of the way through the book and we just never find out what happened to him?! And when they finally catch the suspect (after knowing who he was for at least half of the book) that's it: no confession, no discussion of the consequences, just...ends. I found no satisfaction in this book. I will be returning it.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Another best by Johnston

I want Tim Johnston to be sitting at his desk right now writing another book because he is one hell of a storyteller. While there are still some unanswered questions I have, I will let them go for now. His descriptions of the terrifying events that happen to Audrey are sit up and listen carefully, rewind, play again which brings to mind the same as his first book, Descent. Additionally, the narration is perfect, all characters spoken by Mollo-Christensen, from one character to another without any effort on her part. She has a beautifully soothing voice. Do not miss this book. One of my all time favorites (along with his first, Descent).

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Still crying

The book is a thriller but much more .Beautifully written
What murder of children does to families described so brilliantly that you just cry .
The characters , you will love them and grieve with them . Fathers and their little girls .The decency in the characters, you wish these characters were your friends . Of course you won’t love the villain, his evilness so brilliantly described that you wish you could kill
him yourself .
Purchase this book , you won’t regret it , I promise . I promise ...



13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Confusing story

Tough to finish. The author bounced between characters and years often. I sometimes had difficulty figuring out who, what, and where. Too much description. An interesting idea but it just didn't work for me. The narrator did a fairly good job of distinguishing between men's and woman's voices . I did hang in to the end because it had a decent who-dun-it going on but after all of the build up a rather abrupt ending.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Mr. Johnston, please write the sequel

I was perplexed, at first, because the voice of the story hops from character to character and time to time without any warning. It didn't take me long to figure this out, though. The story is certainly suspenseful. There are a couple of big loose ends that are not tied up at the end of the book. I'm really wanting the answers to them. The characters are interesting and likable, for the most part. Ms. Mollo-Christensen provided one of the best narrations I have ever heard. The distinctions among the characters were vivdly brought to life by her reading.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Nearly returned this one

Unlike other reviewers, I did not find this plot, gripping, moving, or remarkable in any way. If it had been, I could have (maybe) looked past the main problem I had. For me, the worst part was the author's excessive use of pronouns. The author goes on for extended periods (what must be pages and pages, or whole chapters) simply referring to characters as he, she, the girl, the boy. Maybe in a physical book, this wouldn't be so offputting, but at times it was hard to keep track of which character was the focus of the chapter. And at other times it was just plain annoying. These aren't minor players, but the main characters, who at times, are referred to as "the girl/the boy" for what seems like an entire chapter. I find that when an author chooses to use repetitive wording, it becomes a huge distraction, and takes me out of the story. I would not read another book from this author.

2 people found this helpful