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The Storm King

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  1,221 ratings  ·  249 reviews
Haunted by dark secrets and an unsolved mystery, a young doctor returns to his isolated Adirondacks hometown in a tense, atmospheric novel in the vein of Michael Koryta and Harlan Coben.

Burying the past only gives it strength--and fury.

Nate McHale has assembled the kind of life most people would envy. After a tumultuous youth marked by his inexplicable survival of a devast
Hardcover, 391 pages
Published February 6th 2018 by Ballantine Books
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Average rating 3.72  · 
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 ·  1,221 ratings  ·  249 reviews

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Chelsea Humphrey
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Chelsea by: Chandra Claypool (wherethereadergrows)
Shelves: from-publisher
Have you ever read a book and simply couldn't fit it neatly into a single category? That's how I felt about The Storm King; I found that it defied genre boundaries and haven't a clue how to portray the correct recommendation for it. It is suspenseful, yes, but I wouldn't market it as a thriller. The story is a slow burning mystery, a delectable piece of crime fiction, and a coming of age story- all wrapped into one neat and tidy novel. I hate to compare books to one another, but the only one tha ...more
Vengeance is a bitter brew served in your own cupped hands.

Nate McHale finds himself tracking far distant miles from home aboard a cramped bus in the direction of Greystone Lake, New York. A hurricane is churning up along the east coast making travel hazardous at best. His thoughts turn to his wife Meg and his daughter Livvy who are headed to the safety of her parents' home. Images of his patients also swirl in the mind of this pediatric surgical oncologist.

Now what would draw this dedicated m
May 16, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Sins from the past....

Nate is returning to his hometown after 14 years. Sadly, it’s no joyous homecoming. He’s there to attend the funeral of an old girlfriend that vanished right after high school. Can you ever leave the past behind?

Among his group of friends Nate was known as the Storm King. Together they dished out their own version of vigilante justice through what they termed thunder runs. Their misguided quest was to right any wrongs that they came across. Usually accompanied by a n
Susanne  Strong
Dec 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
3 Stars.

Nate McHale “The Storm King” returns home to Greystone Lake after a Fourteen Year absence. If he had it his way, he would never return to this town. It has too many bad memories. Memories of his family’s death, memories of his High School girl friend Lucy’s disappearance and memories of the mean tricks he and his buddies used to play on people. Yet now he is returning for Lucy’s funeral - her body has been found and Nate is the prime suspect. His visit isn’t going to be fun and to top it
Oct 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
"Because everyone is guilty of something. Everyone deserves to be punished."

Just a thought...the past is never really in the past. Actions have consequences.

Can I just say "READ IT!" and leave my review at that? No? Then read my review below:

Seriously here is the gist: The book opens after Nate has won his baseball game and he is traveling home with his family when there is a terrible accident and he is the only survivor. He is the sad boy who survived. He is raised by his Gram and has been giv
Nate McHale known as "The Storm King" returns home to Greystone Lake after 14 years. Nate is dreading his return home with so many bad memories of his family's death and his high school friend Lucy's mysterious disappearance. Lucy's body is found and Nate finds himself as the prime suspect of her death.

When Nate returns, he finds that his grandmother and all of his old friends are in danger including himself. The town hasn't cozied up well to Nate's return and the town is playing some pranks on
Ann Marie (Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine)
You can read all of my reviews at Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine.

Cover – It’s one of the most beautiful covers I’ve seen in a long time.
Atmosphere – Greystone Lake is the perfect setting for this book. The atmosphere is picturesque and immediately ominous.
Writing – I found Brendan Duffy’s writing style to be straightforward and easy to read. It was smart without being pretentious and very descriptive without being flowery.
Pacing – For the most part, I thought the book was well-paced. It was not an e
Sep 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Joe Hill could have written this. It's that good. The Storm King, on it's surface is a thrilling who-dun-it. Behind the riveting plot, it examines what we do (both good and bad) and the far reaching consequences our actions have. I took one star off for a disappointing scene that made me roll my eyes like a teenager. Thankfully, the scene is brief and wasn't enough to mar the overall success of this entertaining novel. I'm keeping my eye on Duffy. He's an author worth watching.
Nov 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, netgalley
Whew, there was a lot going on with this one! Dragged at points, but the ending was solid.

I don't think I have every described a book as 'heavy', but that's the word that comes to mind as I try to summarize my thoughts about this one. It's a turbulent, intense, roller coaster ride. One that takes you back and forth in time, highlighting the actions of a small group of high school kids with an odd sense of justice. These high school kids are now adults, and when their fearless leader Nate (nickna
Diana • Book of Secrets
The Storm King returns... Nate McHale left Greystone Lake 14 years ago, just after the disappearance of his high school girlfriend, Lucy. His sad and turbulent childhood led him and his small band of friends to punish those whom they felt had wronged them. But at what cost? How do your actions in the past ultimately affect other people? When human remains are found in the lake, Nate returns for the funeral only to find the tables have turned, and now someone is out for revenge on him and his ban ...more
Apr 08, 2018 rated it liked it
The McHales of Greystone Lake were driving into the hills for a family picnic. Nate, outfielder for the junior varsity team, hit the game winning triple and was given the game ball. The ball was placed in a basket along with peaches for the picnic. When the car swerved, the baseball became lodged under the brake pedal and the airborne car landed in the lake. Nate was the sole survivor from the family of four. A baseball had destroyed his world. For the next two years, he lived with his grandmoth ...more
Thanks to Netgalley and Random House/Penguin/Ballantine for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

The Storm King was a strong sophomore run from Brendan Duffy, and was a mystery/thriller with bite. Some have been comparing his atmosphere to Stephen King, and I can totally pick up on that vibe. You've got the small town where bad stuff went down. You've got the adult coming home to said small town, years later, and meeting up with old friends and enemies. You've got flashbacks
Paul Falk
This ARC was provided complements of NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review. My gratitude sent to Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine Books for allowing this pre-release edition made available.

The author drove home a lesson known all too well. To me anyway. Wrapped up in an old cliché that says it best: "You can run but you can't hide." Our feelings. Emotions. Travel the world with us. No leaving them behind. Our constant companion. This superbly-written narrative took me scene-by-s
Feb 24, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5 up in the air stars

Sometimes I really liked this book and there were other times where the opposite was true. I had kind of a love/hate relationship with this book.

Nate is a young boy when tragedy strikes when a car accident occurs because of a drunk driver, Nate loses his family and goes to live with his grandmother. The drunk driver forces Nate's family into the river where many unsavory things have seemed to have happened but Nate is saved and survives. The story picks up years later as N
Dec 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
An exciting mystery/thriller that's pretty unique - at least it doesn't seem to follow a formula like so many thrillers. Nate returns to his hometown, after fourteen years away, for the funeral of his high-school girlfriend, Lucy. Lucy's had been missing since high school graduation when her body was found. Before the funeral Nate gets together with his old friends who, together with Nate used to terrorize the town by achieving vengeance against their enemies. Back then Nate was their leader and ...more
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ / 5

First of all, thank you to Ballantine Books for sending me a review copy of this book! All opinions are my own.

The Storm King literally starts out with a tragedy, and it was both a sad and dramatic start to the book. It was also imperative to the story this novel tells. Because of this, I was instantly hooked.

The Storm King is a beautiful coming of age tale along with so much more. It is actually really hard to fit this book into one category because there is so much going on. I us
Carole (Carole's Random Life in Books)
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I thought that this was a rather interesting book. I have had this one in my review pile for some time but hadn't yet worked it into my reading schedule for one reason or another. I decided to grab the audio and give it a try. I was initially drawn to the book by its description and the mysterious cover. I did enjoy the story and am glad that I finally had the chance to read it.

Nate is at the center of this story and while I liked hi
Dorie  - Cats&Books :)
Sometimes it’s just reading the right book at the right time, but this book really kept me riveted from the beginning to the end. Unlike some other reviewers I didn’t feel a lag anywhere and I thought the story flowed extremely well, from one incredible episode to the next.

Nate McHale, born and raised in the small town of Graystone Lake on the East Coast, finds himself heading there for the funeral of his first high school love, Lucy Bennett. Lucy had been declared missing, or a runaway, for the
Jan 20, 2018 rated it liked it
3 stars. I liked this book, the first half had me turning pages quickly and I got to know all of the characters and their stories. I couldn't wait to pick it up. I enjoyed the setting, the hurricane coming and all the rain, rain always makes a story a little more creepy to me. The second half of the book has a lot going on, maybe too much! It was hard to keep track of all the twists and turns and all of the different story lines. There were parts that were unrealistic and I was a little disappoi ...more
Chandra Claypool (wherethereadergrows)
Nate became "The Boy Who Fell"... when his family's car careens into a lake, he's the only survivor. In a small town, legends and stories are all too real and now he is a part of it implicitly. He leaves, marries, has his own child and gives back by becoming a well respected surgeon for kids with cancer. Then he gets called back to his hometown for a funeral. With the impending storm, Madea, approaching, his return brings forth memories he soon would rather forget. A reunion with his old crew an ...more
Nov 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars--somewhere between liked and really liked. Warnings for violence (including sexual and animal violence).

This book is dark, a thriller that's almost horror. It's about guilt and justice and how the things we do can linger years after the event. I enjoyed the plot quite a bit, and the emphasis on consequences--even consequences that come years after the act--made this stand out over most thrillers. It took me a bit to get into the book, but once I did, I was hooked and devoured it. I'm b
samantha  (books-are-my-life20)
Ho hum,This is a pretty good mystery I found the beginning pretty slow but the action picks up in the end. It has a decent plot but the writer needs seasoning something to keep it going when the plot lags, over all it's a okay read just not a reread.
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
I read Brendan Duffy's debut novel House of Echoes when it was published and blow away. It was such a fabulous story and I couldn't wait to read The Storm King to see if that book would be as good.

The Storm King is about repercussions and consequences. How ones youthful acts can have consequences years later. Nate lost his family when he was young and he and his friends took out their anger on the people that they thought deserved it. He never reflected on what the consequences would be. Not un
Laurie  Anderson
Sep 15, 2019 rated it liked it
2.5 stars. This had all the elements I adore, but the writing didn’t connect with me. Thus, not my cup of tea.

Your mileage may vary, as always.
Dec 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
This took me a bit to really get rolling. I'm not sure if the story is too long or if all the excitement was just packed into the last half. But, once I hit the halfway point I was hooked and this turned out to be a complete page turner. The story line is filled with lots of twists and turns and it's one of those books where you just see so many different sides of each character that you are constantly trying to guess their secrets and motives. All this was set in the Northeast during a hurrican ...more
Charles Finch
Feb 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
From USA Today


It’s always a good sign when a novelist is up to something weird. Brendan Duffy’s second book mingles horror, historical fiction, supernatural suspense and old-fashioned murder mystery, the rare phantasmagoria whose pieces click into a satisfying resolution. Set in the Adirondacks, it’s about Nate, the sole survivor of a childhood car crash. Far from home, he’s assembled a happy life, career, wife, daughter, but when he returns for the funeral of a high school friend, all of hi
The Lit Bitch
Feb 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sometimes you pick up a book and you have zero idea what it’s about. That’s what happened to me with this book.

When this book came up for review, I got the pitch at the same time as I got the pitch for The Pearl Sister. For some reason, my brain combined the two books and I said yes to both of them. The title of this book sounded romantic and like it would be in the same vein as The Pearl Sister so why not read that one too.

Then The Storm King book arrived in my mailbox and I vaguely remembered
4.5 stars Dark and brooding. Loved this!
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those stories that is hard to fit into any one category. It's not your typical thriller, not quite a crime story or a coming of age is all of the above. There is definitely a lot going on in this one with lots of layers and character flaws. Which I like! Got a little befuddled at one point for me, but a really solid story. I would most certainly read more by Mr. Duffy.

**Thank you to the publisher and Net Galley in exchange of an honest review.**
Christine Roberts
Feb 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
In this atmospheric thriller, Dr. Nate McHale returns to a small town he left many years before, to attend a funeral. As Nate's past mistakes catch up with him, he finds that history is repeating itself in the worst way possible.
Brendan Duffy's characters are evolved and flawed, in a good way. Alternating between the present and the last few years of Nate's high school career, "The Storm King" draws the reader in and holds them by the throat. I deeply enjoyed this immersive novel.

Thanks to Bren
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Brendan Duffy is the author of THE STORM KING and HOUSE OF ECHOES. He lives in New York.

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“One day he would understand that when you flee one thing, you’re running into the arms of something else.” 1 likes
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