Gino is an enforcer for the mob, using his fists to get people to fall in line or pay their debts. Or at least he was, until somehow he pissed off his boss and found himself knocked in the head with a tire iron, severely concussed, and dumped down by the river. Gino now has no wallet, no phone, no gun, and no idea where he is.
Gino is also all alone, at least until Shane shows up. Shane, who is puking up blood and seems to have been left by the river by some friends after a party. The men have no idea where they are, but they decide that figuring it out together is better than going it alone. Along the way, Gino and Shane get to know one another, learn more about themselves, and figure out the answer to just how they got there and why. Somehow, out of a crisis, Gino and Shane find a way to move forward together.
The River’s Edge is an engaging novella by Jordan Castillo Price. This is a story that you really need to discover as you read, so I am keeping things vague (and I caution you to beware of spoilers that will ruin the story for you). The book opens as we meet Gino, laying on a riverbank with a bloody head and a raging headache. He knows he was dumped there by his boss, but has no idea what he did to get on the man’s bad side. Then he meets Shane, who is also injured, dumped by the river, and has no idea what happened to him. As the men work to make their way back to civilization, they have long hours to get to know one another, to talk and share secrets and connect.
Along the way, Shane and Gino learn more about what happened to each of them, where they are, and how they got there. It is a slow, really fascinating reveal as all the details start to form the full picture and I found myself really caught up in the unfolding story. We also learn more about both men and what shapes them. These are very different guys who would likely never have met one another in their everyday lives, but they find a surprising connection that bonds them as they go through their ordeal.
This is a short, intense story that I just sank into and read in one sitting. I loved the way this one just slowly unfolds and all the little details we learn about the men and their circumstances along the way. This is a great option if you are looking for something a little bit different, a little intense, and really engaging.