Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Riverbend by Tess Thompson

Riverbend by Tess Thompson

“Tag. I found you.”

Just as Annie Bell’s reputation as one of the best chefs in the Pacific Northwest grows to new heights, she receives a threatening phone call from her abusive ex-boyfriend. Marco is out on parole and hungry for revenge, blaming her for his ten-year imprisonment. Fearing for her life and that of her young son, Annie reluctantly accepts help from Drake Webber, a cold and wealthy recluse hiding a dark history of his own. Supported by the gang of misfits from their restaurant Riversong, Annie forges ahead despite her growing terror that Marco will appear at any moment and make good on his threats.

Author Tess Thompson reunites the colorful cast of endearing small-town characters from her bestselling novel Riversong and takes you on a journey that will renew your faith in love, friendship and the power of community – even in the face of seemingly insurmountable grief and fear. You’ll find yourself once again cheering for the residents of River Valley, especially the big-hearted and compassionate Annie Bell.

Escape with a blend of love, laughter, friendship, suspense and gourmet food while remembering it’s never too late for second chances


That night, just shy of midnight, she opened the window wide enough for someone to jump through. Dressed in lacy lingerie, she painted her mouth with lipstick. She sprinkled the pillows with drops of the men’s cologne. Then she climbed into bed, clutching the telephone in one hand and the meth in the other. And she waited.

Marco came home twenty minutes later. Annie knew he was the plus ten kind of drunk by the way he slammed into the hall table and the subsequent heavy and unsteady footsteps down the hallway as he made his way to the bedroom. She’d invented a scale to gauge Marco’s drunkenness. Five was the afternoon kind of drunk while watching football with some of his buddies. He was harmless then, almost playful. Anything above an eight meant that he would have his fists on her before he passed out on the bed.

His footsteps were closer to the bedroom now. She dialed 911, speaking quietly into the phone. “I’m being beaten by my boyfriend. Send police to 8011 Alvarado right away.” She hung up, bracing for the worst, hoping they would arrive in time.
Then he was in the doorway, his red eyes scanning the room, taking in the open window, her lingerie, and her painted mouth. 
He yanked her from the bed, tearing the front of her nightgown apart so that she was in only her panties. “You little slut. You had someone here? In my bed?” He went to the window, shouting into the night like a crazed animal, “Where is the son of a bitch?” Slamming the window shut and locking it, he turned towards her, utter rage displayed on his now almost purple face. A vein popped from his forehead; his pulse beat wildly at his neck. Then, he lurched towards her, yanking her up by her mane of thick curls. She closed her eyes, knowing the pain was coming, and slipped the meth into his pants pocket. 

Please, God, don’t let him hurt the baby.

My Review:  July 11, 2013   ~ Review Copy ~

RiverbendRiverbend by Tess Thompson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First I would like to thank the author Tess Thompson for this book for an honest review. I have not read Riversong yet, but I thoroughly enjoyed reading Riverbend. Annie was young and to get away from her home situation jumped into a relationship with Marco who ends up be a very abusive man. When she finds out she is pregnant she makes a decision to get away from him for good and he ends up in jail for trying to beat her to death and drugs. She ended up in Riverbend when she got into a relationship with another man that was mentally abusive. She left him but stayed in Riverbend and has a very colorful group of friends. Marco received ten years in prison. Annie was happy taking care of her son and being a chef and partner with Lee in their restaurant. Drake is a man who Annie runs into and is asked to come cook meals once a week because he plans to become a recluse. She accepts and on her first day she gets a call from her ex Marco. Annie is now terrified and also worried how all her friends will react because she never told them about Marco. Her friends rally to help protect her and the safest place for her and her son to stay is with Drake. Annie and Drake both have their own past demons to overcome as they fall in love. I applaud Tess for taking on and doing a good job writing about abuse and how people react and deal with it. It takes some a long time to learn to trust people. Great job Tess keep up the good work.

View all my reviews

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Tess Thompson is a novelist and playwright with a BFA in Drama from the University of Southern California. In 2011, she released her first novel, Riversong, which subsequently became a bestseller.

Like the characters in Riverbend, Tess is from a small town in Oregon. She currently lives in a suburb of Seattle, Washington with her two young daughters, Emerson and Ella. She is inspired daily by the view of the Cascade Mountains from her home office window.

Tess is working on her next novel and regularly blogs about her journey as a mother, author and friend at

Buy Links:

Tess will be awarding an ebook of Caramel and Magnolias at each stop to a randomly drawn commenter, along with a grand prize of a paperback of Riversong, the first book in The River Valley Collection (Paperback - US ONLY) to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.  Follow the tour and comment, the more you comment the better your chances of winning.  The tour dates can be found here.


  1. Dalene,
    Thank you so very much for having me and for your kind review. Happy reading! I can't wait for you to read Riversong and Riverstar (third in the series, coming August 25). Big hugs. Tess

    1. Thank you for being my guest. I am so looking forward to reading both books, but it will be a bit yet, I am booked up for reviews for a couple months. :)