Title: The Summer I Died
Author: Ryan C. Thomas
Series: Roger Huntington Saga #1
Release Date: January 20, 2006
Publisher: Coscom Entertainment
Length: 232 pages
Genre: Horror/ Mystery/ Psychological Thriller
The 2 principal characters in this book are Roger Huntington and Mervyn a.k.a Tooth. The story is told from Roger's perspective. Roger is a nerdy, comic book lover who has just come home from college still a virgin. He is anxious to spend time with his best friend Tooth, since it seems like their lives have drifted apart since Roger started college. Roger and Tooth are an odd pair because Tooth doesn’t seem smart, but throughout the book we learn that Tooth is actually very smart. The summer that Roger and Tooth expected to have is far from the summer that they will actually experience. It all starts when they are shooting beer cans with Tooth’s gun and as they are about to leave they hear a woman screaming. Should they help her or should they go home?
The Summer I Died is one of the first books I have ever read by Ryan C. Thomas. I had gotten the e-book for free while browsing around on Amazon for free Kindle e-books. The cover of the book caught my attention; a man standing with an ax in his hand while the sun is setting over some mountains seemed just like something I would find interesting to read. However, this book was not what I expected. This book exceeded my expectations with the way that Thomas was able to explain the events taking place with such vivid details. I loved how Thomas was able to squeeze the humorous analogies into the characters dialogues and thoughts even when the characters were in such horrible situations. Since he was able to that it made the book seem more horrifying than saddening about what was happening.
The vivid description of details and events made me feel like I was right there with the characters, and I must say that it has been quite a long time since a book has made me feel this way. Certain parts where so vivid that I could not take what was happening to the characters and had to take a break from reading to get the images out of my head. Between the title of the book and the cover I was convinced that I knew exactly who was going to die and how they were going to die, but boy oh boy was I wrong. This book has so many surprises, twists, and moments where you just can’t believe it did not go how you thought. This book was written so well that it completely leaves you guessing because every event could have went so many different ways and for some reason it seems like I could never guess the way it ended up going.
One thing I liked about this book is how the characters’ values and personalities played a part in how the story climaxed. Roger is so nerdy and an extremely cautious crybaby, while Tooth is courageous and doesn’t take anybody’s bullcrap. All throughout the book it seems like their personalities clashed too much causing them to be in situations that they should have been out of or never gotten into in the first place. I like how religion had its part in the story as well being that Roger did not really believe in God, but believed there was a higher power over everyone. I liked how his thoughts about God kept changing as the story progressed. The importance of family also played a huge part in this book as a driving and motivating force.
I would definitely recommend this book to all of you, unless you have a very weak stomach. With that being said, WEAK STOMACHS PLEASE BE VERY AWARE AND TOUGHEN UP BEFORE YOU ATTEMPT TO READ THIS STORY!