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The Summer I Died (The Roger Huntington Saga #1)

3.97  ·  Rating Details ·  1,269 Ratings  ·  245 Reviews
"A tense, bloody ride. I enjoyed it." - Brian Keene, bestsellingauthor of The Rising and City of the Dead

So much screaming.

Roger Huntington is home from college for the summer, and he and his best friend, Tooth, can’t wait to start having fun. It’s going to be a summer full of beer, comic books, movies, laughs, parties and maybe even girls.

So much pain.

The sun is high and
Nook, 183 pages
Published July 1st 2010 by Coscom Entertainment (first published 2006)
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That is significantly understating the effect this book had on me. I finished it last weekend having been reduced to a shocked, emotionally shredded child who suddenly didn’t feel comfortable with the world around me. Since that time, I've mostly recovered from the experience though there are aspects of the story that may never completely leave me. In light of the above, I want to be careful in my recommendation of this book to others (there’s a verbal ink blot test below that may help).

This bo
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:


If you’re like me and your idea of a great date movie is something like this . . .

Houston commercial photography

over something like this . . .

Houston commercial photography

Okay, that’s kind of a lie. There’s always room in my bed life for some more Ryan Gosling. For the most part, though, I’m down for a slasher movie over a “chick flick” any day of the week. If you can’t ever seem to meet your annual quota of
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*

Holy crud. Not for the squeamish at a train wreck just can't look away.
October is my month for horror books and this one fit that bill with bells on.
Oh my, I have to sit on this one for a bit before I can write a review because I'm a little conflicted. Let me just say this right now -- intense.

****WARNING!!! This book may cause violent seizures, recurring nightmares, and ongoing medical bills for psychological counseling. PROCEED AT YOUR OWN RISK****

It’s been a week, and I finally feel able to write a review for this absolutely terrifying, gripping, grotesque book. Just a few words on what impressed me the most about this short debut. I know
Jan 04, 2011 Bill rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, favorites
Torture porn.
The mere mention of it induces cringes.
The makers of movies and books that fall under this category are looked upon with disdain, as well as those who willingly shell out their hard-earned money to subject themselves to the viewing and reading of such disgusting material.
Am I right? I mean, look at the first couple of Saw movies: horribly violent situations, the will of the victims to endure dreadful agony to somehow survive their captivity. Could you imagine anyone wanting to sit
Bark's Book Nonsense
May 19, 2011 Bark's Book Nonsense rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Bark's Book Nonsense by: Tressa
Roger is home from college on break and plans to kick back with his best bud Tooth, drink some beer, shoot some cans and smoke a little dope. They head out to an unnamed backwoods town in New Hampshire to shoot without being disturbed and end up captives of a madman Roger calls “Skinny Man” and his bloodthirsty dog. Being a NH native myself, and being far too close to a town where a real life horrendous slaughter recently occurred, this setting scared the pee-pee out of me. I could see that run ...more
For every life, there is a purpose. It may not be clear to you, it could hinge on something as simple as a roll of the dice. Know what you are wading into here before you start reading - it is a story of raw, graphic, inexorable torture. Gore is ramped up to maximum overdrive. The depravity of the "Skinny Man' will steal your very breath away and leave you heaving. One reviewer used the word 'unrelenting' to describe the tone of the book, and that is it to a tee. This is for readers with thick s ...more
Carla ☺Did I Say That☺
5 *I Want My Mommy* Stars!
Two words...

This book was one of the most gruesome..intense..dark..demented..disturbing..brutal..stories Ive read in awhile!! This is truly..I mean it people..truly not for the faint of hearts!!In other words if this is your first horror book..All I can say is..

Mr.Thomas managed to pull off one helluva Hat-Trick...He combined a well told Plot...filled with unspeakable Horror and topped off with some well placed Humor...It gets no better than that!!!

The Summer I Died..te
Adam Light
Nov 21, 2012 Adam Light rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, own-it
The summer I died is one HELL of a ferocious, gut-twisting, psycho-thriller. At first, Mr. Thomas lulls you into complacency with a hearty tale of two young lads wiling away a summer day, messing with Roger's sister and basically enjoying life, and living for the day.
Roger and Tooth are best friends on a day trip out to the woods to target practice with Tooth's gun, just having a good old time, and then things go south really, really fast. I don't want to give any details about the rest of this
Paul Nelson
Not for the faint hearted The Summer I Died is certainly the most brutal and ferocious book I’ve read to date, there are some seriously sickening moments amidst a book filled with torture scenes but you know what, you can’t stop reading it’s absolutely riveting.

Roger back from college goes out to the mountainous woodland with his friend Tooth to drink some beers and shoot some cans, life is about to take a horrific turn when they go to investigate sounds of a woman screaming. They find a blood d
Feb 09, 2012 Tressa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, splatterpunk
OK. Somehow my earlier review praising this glorious novel disappeared, and if this were any other book, I'd just shrug my shoulders and move on. But I won't do that because I want you to read this book. You must read this book. I need you to read this book just so I can take comfort in knowing I'm not the only one to witness such atrocities.

Roger and Tooth are best friends. Roger is home from college on a break, and he and Tooth are parked in the woods shooting the breeze when a woman's scream
May 24, 2015 Kaya rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: not-interested
I definitely didn't know what I was in for. Excellent book if you're a fan of the genre, but if your level of tolerance is as low as mine, considering graphic violence, then you better pass. 3/4 are pure horror and pain, that's the whole plot.

Roger and Tooth mess around with Roger's sister and enjoy life for the summer. Roger is back from college. They go out to the woods and drink beer, while playing with shooting cans. Everything gets fucked up when they go to investigate sounds of a woman scr
Nov 02, 2013 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books, read-2013
5 Stars

Wow, that was intense and really graphic. I love over the top horror movies and torture movies. This apparently was the first time that I actually read a torture book. A book that really is not for the feint of hear or those that disdain graphic violence.

I was so enthralled by the graphic nature of this story that I piqued my wife's interest in picking this one up on her Kindle too. Although she stopped at the 60% mark, my finishing it gave her the boost to push through this incredibly da
Aug 24, 2008 Greg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, horror
A fun read with lots of gruesome mutilation. Along with some top notch gore there is a well plotted story that might not be the greatest of literature but it keeps up a nice level of suspense and enough surprises to stop the book from slipping into the literary equivalent of a snuff film. If this had been a movie I might have felt some serious nausea at some of the scenes.
David Church
Feb 27, 2013 David Church rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This book was brutally epic. What a page turner and the last 20% I was on pins and needles. One of the most disturbing books I have ever read. If a book can disturb or scare me, that is an accomplishment. This book did both. 5 stars!
Not Now...Mommy's Reading
So I've had 'The Summer I Died' for almost a few months now after seeing it come up quite a bit in several different discussions within the Horror groups. After reading Stephen's amazing review (the pic of the baby is too cute!) I decided to give my romances a break and dive into this novel. Seeing that I usually find the books that others scream are terrifying, horrifying, so awesome to be not so much - I went into this expecting to be mildly disappointed.

I had to wait until today to write the
May 02, 2010 Kasia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This novella truly packs a punch, I didn't know what to expect when I got it other than being intrigued by the premise and it blew my mind, it went above and beyond of what I was expecting. The premise is interesting and one of my favorites, I like those lost in woods and chased by a madman or stuck somewhere with no way out, to me that is very scary and this was freaky enough as an idea but the writing and execution deserve their own credit. Thomas filled my head with crystal clear images right ...more
Nov 18, 2011 Samantha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
This book really was as nasty as people warned me it was, but i loved it.....

Its so much more than just blood and gore. It takes a lot to shock me when it comes to books, ive read a lot of horrors where violence is the main theme and i dont normally flinch. The victims are normally faceless characters i dont care about because they're just there to die bloody and ramp up the shock factor, which is basically fine for the most part but i cared about Roger and Tooth!
Every horrendous thing they wen
Apr 22, 2011 Gatorman rated it really liked it
This was a suprisingly enjoyable read. At times it seemed on the verge of becoming nothing more than torture porn but managed to maintain a lot of humanity in the face of much gruesome violence and it played out nicely. Well-written and compelling.
Feb 21, 2013 Andy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow, I'm glad to be finished with that. 'The Summer I Died' is up there with 'The Girl Next Door' and 'Off Season' as one of the brutal elite. The imagery of the book was so consistently horrifying that I needed to stop reading at least an hour before bed because I didn't want to drift off to sleep thinking about it (I've made that mistake before).

Often times, people compare reading a book like this to ripping off a bandaid as quickly as possible, to just get it over with. Maybe it's more like
Mar 06, 2013 Kimberly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ha-challenge
Absolutely brutal novel! Yes, as other reviews have stated, the torture and gore put you in mind of a SAW movie. However, what makes this novel stand out above so many others is the portrayal of the characters that we are given--particularly in the beginning. We are introduced to Roger and Tooth, life-long friends reuniting during Roger's first summer break from college. We see their families, their relationships, hopes, interests….we are thrust directly into their world. Then one day, their wor ...more
Dierdra Byrd
This book actually should come with a warning because it is much more graphic then most horror novels and I can see why some people would not want to read this or get nightmares after they do read it.
The story caught you up from page one, the author makes you really fall in love with Roger and Tooth and you really care about what happens to them. The torture in this book made me cringe and want to put the book down at times but then again I also could not tear myself away from reading because I
This is the most disturbing and goriest book I have ever read, and I am rating it five stars. I was felt sick to my stomach reading this. I am adding this to my favorites shelf. I have had nightmares about the Skinny Man coming at me with an axe the past two nights.I am buying a printed copy of this even though I have a kindle edition.

Ya...I lets just say I'm surprised I loved this as much as I did.


When I heard this was going to be a movie I screamed. But when I saw that the director wasn't
May 19, 2014 Heather rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, wobble
Omg. Absolutely horrifying. BUT STILL as bad as this book is, it still doesn't compare to Hillary: Tail of the Dog. I doubt ANY book EVER will pass that one as most gory and terrifying and still love it. The Summer I Died would probably be the worst if I hadn't already read Hillary. So don't think I'm saying pass this one up. I'm saying if you love Horror read them both. Then lock your doors/windows and turn on your nite light!
JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust
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.......REVIEW TO COME........I want my Mommy.!!!!!
Unlike most of my reviews, I've deliberately left it a day after finishing The Summer I Died before putting this together. Usually, I strike while the iron is hot, wanting to express my disappointment or frustration, amazement or joy with what I've just read. But The Summer I Died is not that kind of book. Instead, it's one that demands reflection: Both of the writing and of oneself as a reader. The former, because Thomas' short novel is one of the most powerful pieces of horror fiction I've eve ...more
Jan 17, 2012 Bandit rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first thought was this is torture porn at its finest, but then I kept thinking about it more. Reminded me of the first Saw movie, so incredibly disturbing yet impossible to disengage from. I read this book in more or less one sitting, because I felt compelled to find out what happens. The great thing about it is that the writer really made us care so that the reader can get really involved with the story and not just sorta go through it in shock and disgust. Underneath the blood and gore and ...more
Nov 17, 2013 Beth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who thinks their brave.
Shelves: favorites
Wow what to say about this one...I was expecting to be shocked, grossed our or even left stunned. What I wasn't expecting was to be overwhelmed with sadness, I don't often cry while reading a book but this one pulled me through the ringer and as well as all the above grossed out, shocked etc I felt really sad for all the characters involved (well all but one) because I was left with a sense of even at the end those that survived didn't get any kind of justice or recognition for their good deeds ...more
Dec 11, 2013 Cezara rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I love scary movies and books, but this book was not scary. It was disgusting, possibly shocking at times, if you're not desensitized to gore and torture porn in general, but it was not scary. You may get a jolt at some scenes if you don't see them coming, but once the surprise wears off, all you're left with is a vague feeling of disgust, like you stepped in dog shit and can't quite get it all off the sole of your shoe. I finished it because I read some reviews that said the ending was great, b ...more
Keith Chawgo
Sep 20, 2012 Keith Chawgo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
'THE SUMMER I DIED' is a true work of art that gets totally under your skin and then crawls and tunnels in there for days after you finish the last sentence.

Written from the point of view of Roger, the story begins as two friends reunite for the summer. Roger has been away at college and his best friend Tooth is biding his time in a small town with no future. Their lives are going in different directions and they want to make this a summer to remember. Unfortunately, they run into a psychopathet
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Free Books, .99 &...: Book Giveaway- The Summer I Died- Ryan C. Thomas 1 30 Jul 24, 2014 07:42PM  
Where can I find this and is the new remake any different? 2 26 May 06, 2014 05:39PM  
Horror Aficionados : The Summer I Died, by Ryan C. Thomas 104 195 Jul 29, 2013 12:28PM  
Writing a Novel 1 20 Jul 23, 2013 05:16AM  
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I am the author of the novels The Summer I Died, Ratings Game, Born to Bleed, Salticidae, Undead World of Oz, Hissers and more. I hope to learn a lot from the readers on this site, and get some good book recs in the process. Thanks!
More about Ryan C. Thomas...

Other Books in the Series

The Roger Huntington Saga (3 books)
  • Born To Bleed (The Roger Huntington Saga, #2)
  • Scars of the Broken (The Roger Huntington Saga Book 3)

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“Life really is amazing, and when you're about to lose it, you finally notice that you never really took it in before. And you realize the sheer magnitude of what it involves, from your first kiss to your hundredth slice of pizza. I guess that's why those tears drifted down my cheeks.” 21 likes
“Hope is a cruel bitch.” 13 likes
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