indie book reviews

review of Where Dead Fish Go by J.A. Coppinger

WhereDeadFishGo

★★★★★

reviewed by Cy Wyss

Where Dead Fish Go is the story of Boom and Jiffy, two childhood friends who’ve grown apart but reunite to stop a series of horrific killings in their childhood town. Boom is an out-of-work, out-of-luck semi-alcoholic whose wife left him for another man. Jiffy is a stable, athletic family man with a daughter who shares the same ability he and Boom share: they are empaths. They can sense (and even manipulate) others’ emotions. Jiffy has the task of talking Boom into returning to the hometown he left at 17, desperate to get out. Assuming Jiffy can do this, the pair face the daunting task of investigating a series of drowning deaths at the lake where they spent their formative years.

The story is suspenseful and well-paced. The narrative is always from the point of view of Boom, and alternates between present day and one especially traumatizing summer when the boys were nine. As the novel progresses, we learn the secret of the lake and boathouse and the horrible truth behind the drowning disappearances. From about a third of the way through the book, I couldn’t put it down. The prose is smooth and easy to read, and the suspense had me wanting to know more all the rest of the way through. The culmination of the plot was surprising to me, a little saddening, but a great read overall. I really enjoyed Where Dead Fish Go and you will too, especially if you like suspense novels with a strong supernatural component, but not the usual (tired) supernatural of zombies or vampires.

Cy Wyss

I am an author currently residing in the Indianapolis area. I write and review mysteries, thrillers, and science fiction. Sign up for my newsletter at right and get a free short story.

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