The Night Road: Kevin Lucia
Reviewed By Steve Stred
As someone who reads and reviews a lot of books, I always find it a bit shameful when a book arrives in my review queue from an established author. Look, I know time is limited and we can’t read all the books, but I still get a bit red-faced when I realize I’ve not read anything by an author who has been around for some time.
Case in point – Kevin Lucia.
Kevin is an integral cog of Cemetery Dance Publishing now and so it’s been great to see his pushing of older CD titles, but also that he has his own releases in the works.
When ‘The Night Road’ was offered for review, I jumped on it. The cover is gorgeous and the plot had me very intrigued.
What I liked: The story follows Grace, a competitive distance runner who is struggling with the reality her sister is about to die.
Lucia wraps up a ton of story in a small page count and from the simple idea, not only do we get some really great relationship drama, but he manages to carve out a fantastic Irish-Folklore aspect that grows from a kernel in the beginning to a cinematic sequence that will leave you breathless.
I really loved seeing Grace’s character come to terms with her new reality and the role she played in what is happening, but also the other secondary characters that arrive and how they ultimately had a part in what happens.
The ending was spot on and filled with an emotional kick I wasn’t expecting.
What I didn’t like: The story moves along really quickly and because of that I think the one aspect that is referred to as a betrayal between sisters doesn’t get fully examined. We find out about it and learn the history, but I think I would’ve liked to have found out more.
Why you should buy this: A great look at grief and how leaning on something that gives you joy can ultimately help you overcome difficulties, ‘The Night Road’ will tick a lot of boxes for dark fiction readers. We get emotions, folklore, otherworldly aspects and familial dynamics, all wrapped up into a story that you could read in a single sitting.
Don’t be surprised if this one sucks you in and you’re unable to put it down until the very end.
The Night Road
For most of her life, Grace Donaldson’s passion has been running. As a star in Cross Country and Track and Field, Grace ran to win, because losing wasn’t an option. For her, running was freedom, and she was only ever her true self when racing toward the finish line.
Her senior year, that all changed. Afterward, instead of running toward something, Grace started running away. From her pain, her anger, and her guilt. Now, as her younger sister lies on her deathbed from attempted suicide and Grace’s darkness threatens to consume her, she discovers The Night Road, and the chance to run toward something again, instead of away…if she’s willing to pay a terrible price.
Steve Stred is the Splatterpunk Nominated Author of ‘Sacrament’ and ‘Mastodon.’
Based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Steve has released over a dozen novels and novellas as well as a number of collections. He has appeared alongside some of horror’s biggest names within some truly excellent anthologies.
He is a proud co-founder of the LOHF Writer’s Grant and an Active Member of the HWA.