The Riverman

The Riverman Trilogy (Volume 1)

Aaron Starmer

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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Alistair Cleary is the kid who everyone trusts. Fiona Loomis is not the typical girl next door. Alistair hasn't really thought of her since they were little kids until she shows up at his doorstep with a proposition: she wants him to write her biography. What begins as an odd vanity project gradually turns into a frightening glimpse into the mind of a potentially troubled girl. Fiona says that in her basement, there’s a portal that leads to a magical world where a creature called the Riverman is stealing the souls of children. And Fiona’s soul could be next. If Fiona really believes what she’s saying, Alistair fears she may be crazy. But if it’s true, her life could be at risk. In this novel from Aaron Starmer, it’s up to Alistair to separate fact from fiction, fantasy from reality.

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Book Excerpts

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Before

     Every town has lost a child. Search the archives, ask the clergy. You’ll find stories of runaways slipping out of windows in the dark, never to be seen again. You’ll be told of custody battles gone ugly and parents taking extreme measures. Occasionally you’ll read about kids snatched from parking lots or on their walks home from school. Here today, gone tomorrow. The pain is passed out and shared until the only ones who remember are the only ones who ever really gave a damn.

     Our town lost Luke Drake.

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Reviews

Praise for The Riverman

The Riverman:
 
"This blend of magical realism and mystery blurs the line between reality and fantasy, setting up a creepy unease that both disturbs and propels the reader forward." - BCCB
 
"Dive into this book and you may never resurface." —Newbery Medalist Jack Gantos
 
"Lines between reality and fantasy blur in this powerful, disquieting tale of lost children, twisted friendship and the power of storytelling." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
 
"In this dark, twisting tale, readers are never sure if Fiona’s story is true or not, and they won’t want to stop reading until they find out...this magical tale is sure to please readers of urban fantasy, and with its theme of missing children and changing friendships, it will be perfect for fans of Neil Gaiman and Charles de Lint, too." —Booklist
 
"Readers will find themselves confronted with deep, unanswered questions regarding the relationship of collective imaginary worlds to reality, the evolving nature of memories and friendships, and the unknowability of people. Those ready to explore darker realities will devour this book." —School Library Journal
 
"Somewhere between Holly Black's Doll Bones and Nova Ren Suma's 17 & Gone in audience and tone, this blend of magical realism and mystery blurs the line between reality and fantasy, setting up a creepy unease that both disturbs and propels the reader forward...the deliciously tangled web of a plot defies categorization." —The Bulletin of the Center For Children's Books (recommended)
 
"Starmer explores the relationship between creation and theft, reality and fantasy in this haunting novel...the novel's strength is in the pervasive aura of unknowing that Starmer creates and sustains."  —Publisher's Weekly
 
"There is a lot to ponder and recommend in this unusual tale." —VOYA Magazine
 
"Starmer makes the possibilites presented by Fiona's stories feel no less improbable (or unsettling) than the scenarios Alistair construsts to explain them away, or actions he takes in an attempt to protect her."- Publishers Weekly
 
 
 

Reviews from Goodreads

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About the Author

Aaron Starmer

Aaron Starmer was born in northern California, raised in the suburbs of Syracuse, New York, and educated at Drew University in Madison, New Jersey. His novels for young readers include Dweeb and The Only Ones, and his travel writing has appeared in numerous guidebooks. He lives with his wife in Hoboken, New Jersey.

Aaron Starmer

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Available Formats and Book Details

The Riverman
Aaron Starmer

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
March 2014
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9780374363109
ISBN10: 0374363102
Middle-Grade Fiction320 pages
Age Range: 10 to 14
Grade Range: 5 to 9
$9.99

Hardcover

Hardcover
Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
March 2014
Hardcover
ISBN: 9780374363093
ISBN10: 0374363099
Middle-Grade Fiction
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 320 pages
Age Range: 10 to 14
Grade Range: 5 to 9
$15.99
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From The Publisher

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

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