Pick up Tim Johnston’s suspenseful novel The Current and you risk finding yourself glued to your chair, eyes to the pages, no thought of attending to daily obligations ... Johnston masterfully intertwines these parallel events with the already complicated lives of three families devastated by tragedy ... Johnston’s elegant, cinematic style takes us into the characters’ lives and history, problems and concerns. The book examines that horrifying moment when everything changes, the before and after when love, friendship, hopes and trust turn into dread, guilt, blame and grief. We care and fear for them as the stakes grow higher, more lethal. A killer is still on the loose.
This is a book you'll want to keep on your shelf after you've read it. Even if you don't think you'll ever read it again, you'll want to keep it close to you because of the absolute giddy pleasure you felt reading it the first time. Tim Johnston has given us the gold standard of lush narrative description—captivating, mesmerizing, stunning ... Kudos, Tim Johnston. We'll look forward to more of the same. Much more.
Crimes occur but don’t dominate the story line, allowing Johnston’s characters to be the central focus of this slow-burning literary thriller ... Johnston expertly weaves together the stories of those most affected by Holly Burke’s death ... Johnston delivers a richly atmospheric story whose depictions of the frozen winter landscape reinforce the novel’s theme of individuals unable to move on after loss ... The Current is, in part, a mystery, but it’s also about everything that is left in a mystery’s wake — the fathers and daughters, mothers and sons facing the tormenting questions surrounding their dead or disappeared loved ones. It is an examination of the way tragedies divide but can also offer the opportunity to bring people together, ushering in the inevitable thaw that can reveal the path toward moving forward and healing.
Tim Johnston’s gripping second novel is much more than a skillfully constructed, beautifully written whodunit. It’s a subtle and lyrical acclamation of the heart and spirit of small-town America. The Current is not your conventional, frenetically paced page-turner, although it smolders with a brooding, slow-burn tension that nudges the reader forward, catching you up in the lives of the troubled solitaries at the book’s core.
Tim Johnston’s prose style helps reinforce the melding of the past with the present that takes place throughout The Current ... This fluidity of time and character helps reinforce the notion that this small town has never really moved past the tragedy that shook it a decade previously, that in some ways it’s always still unfolding. Beautifully written and full of both long-held grief and urgent suspense, The Current is a perfect novel to keep by your bedside on these long winter nights.
... ust twenty pages into Tim Johnston’s new novel The Current the reader too is swept away by the accelerating force of tragedy, expertly staged ... And now Johnston has combined suspense with substance to produce a relentless narrative in which a small town and quiet lives materialize with an intensity more often found in contemporary short story ... And with each turn Johnston adds depth not only to the dual mystery at the core of his plot but also to the lives of the characters at the heart of his novel ... With unhurried ease The Current carries us along...
This novel is careful layer upon careful layer, as deceptively thick yet brutally delicate as winter ice itself. Johnston’s descriptions of people, places, grief, and loneliness are subtle and evocative; the minor plot about an aging dog becomes a rending portrait of the ravages of love. Indeed, for all its harsh observations about human nature, this novel has at its heart a strong belief that love, for all the pain it brings, is the one thing that truly saves us.