The Mercy of the Tide

The Mercy of the Tide

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Riptide, Oregon, 1983. A sleepy coastal town, where crime usually consists of underage drinking down at a Wolf Point bonfire. But then strange things start happening—a human skeleton is unearthed in a local park and mutilated animals begin appearing, seemingly sacrificed, on the town’s beaches. The Mercy of the Tide follows four people drawn irrevocably together by a recent tragedy as they do their best to reclaim their lives—leading them all to a discovery that will change them and their town forever.
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About the Book

Keith Rosson paints outside the typical genre lines with his brilliant debut novel. It is a gorgeously written book that merges the sly wonder of magical realism and alternate history with the depth and characterization of literary fiction.

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Recent Press

  • Literary Hub – “. . . nothing is what it seems in Riptide, both due to the sources of violence and to the magical realism that Rosson uses with a magically deft touch.” – Full Review
  • NPR Books – “Rosson is a talent to be watched, and Riptide is one of the most immersive fictional settings in recent memory.” – Full Review
  • Oregon Live – “. . . Rosson’s voice is sure; his characters are vividly, heartbreakingly human in their flaws and foibles and relationships; and his plot rolls relentlessly along, growing ever more nerve-wracking until the final, completely unsettling chapter. ” – Full Article/Interview
  • Publisher’s Weekly (Starred review) – “A striking novel” Full Review
  • Foreword Reviews (5/5 Hearts) – “An exquisitely honed, beautifully written novel.” Full Review
  • Barnes & Noble Blog – “Blending fantasy, horror, and alt-history, this slow-burning debut is grounded by characters whose personal tragedies anchor the supernatural elements. ” – Full Article
  • Verbicide – “Highly Recommended” –  Full Review
  • Medium – “Recommended without reservation” – Full Review
  • Arizona Daily Sun – Flagstaff Live – “Words That Work: Anger and The Mercy of the Tide” –  Full Review
  • Hifinoise – “He’s a writer who is now on my list of ‘check out everything they release.'”- Full Review
  • Modern Vinyl – Missaligned PodcastInterview
  • The Nervous Breakdown Interview & Excerpt
  • The QwilleryInterview
  • Speculative Fiction ShowcaseExcerpt
  • The Oregonian Live – “24 NW Books We’re Excited to Read in 2017” – Full Article
  • – “Fiction Affliction: Genre-Benders for February” – Full Article
  • Brainfluff – “Strongly Recommended” – Full Review
  • Seattle Book Mama Blog (4/5 Stars) – “This darkly delicious novel shows that Rosson is a force to be reckoned with.” – Full Review
  • Rest, Read, Repeat – “Rosson is phenomenal in his story-telling and does a fantastic job of developing his characters throughout.” – Full Review
  • The Haunted Reading Room (5/5 Stars) – ” A novel that is deep and rich, a literary pleasure . . . Best of 2017″ – Full Review
  • A Bohemian Mind – (4/5 Stars) – “A remarkable debut.” – Full Review
  • Making Good Stories – (4/5 Stars) – Full Review
  • Girl With a Pretty Keyboard – “It’s a weird little novel but it’s gritty and deeply emotional.” – Full Review
  • Writing Forums ShowcaseInterview


Genres: Alternate History, Literary Fiction, Speculative Fiction, Thriller
Publication Year: February 2017
ASIN: 0996626247
ISBN: 9780996626248
List Price: $16.95
eBook Price: $8.95
“An astonishing debut soaked with suspense. Rosson brings his characters to life with surefooted precision. The town of Riptide, Oregon, may be cursed with rain, but it will be scorched into your memory. Outlandishly excellent.”
– Jim Ruland, author of FOREST OF FORTUNE
Keith Rosson’s fearless and genre-bending debut novel, The Mercy of the Tide, is harrowing, haunting, and hypnotic. This is nightmare material of the first order, at once exhilarating and profoundly disturbing. It’ll leave you breathless. Riptide, Oregon, is a forbidding landscape of shattered lives and broken dreams, and it’s a scarier place than the world you’re living in. Pour yourself a bracing drink, settle into your comfy chair. Once you begin this book, you won’t be going anywhere. What talent, what nerve, what an astonishing first novel.
– John Dufresne, author of I DON'T LIKE WHERE THIS IS GOING
A dark thrill ride.
– Kyle Minor, author of PRAYING DRUNK
This story of a community of wounded souls takes some gutsy turns off the main roads to stake its own unforgettable territory. With grit and empathy, Rosson tells a story of heartache and grief unlike any I’ve ever read.
– James Boice, author of THE SHOOTING and MVP
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About the Author
Keith Rosson

Keith Rosson's fiction has appeared in Redivider, Cream City Review, PANK, The Nervous Breakdown, and more. He is the author of The Best of Intentions: The Avow Anthology, an omnibus collection of his long-running punk fanzine, Avow, as well as an illustrator and graphic designer, with clients that include Green Day, Against Me, the Goo Goo Dolls, and others. An advocate of both public libraries and non-ironic adulation of the cassette tape, he can be found at