Riley Sager in Conversation with May Cobb

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Riley Sager’s latest novel, Survive the Night, is one of the hot thrillers of the summer. He did a recent virtual event for The Poisoned Pen, hosted by Barbara Peters, owner of the bookstore, and May Cobb, author of The Hunting Wives. Both authors have books available through the Web Store. https://store.poisonedpen.com/

Here’s the summary of Survive the Night.

THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

One of New York Times Book Review‘s “summer reads guaranteed to make your heart thump and your skin crawl”; An Amazon Best of the Month Pick; Named a must-read summer book by The Washington PostUSA TodayVultureBuzzFeedForbesEntertainment Weekly, CNN, New York PostGood HousekeepingE!PopSugarCrimeReadsThrillist, and BookRiot

It’s November 1991. Nirvana’s in the tape deck, George H. W. Bush is in the White House, and movie-obsessed college student Charlie Jordan is in a car with a man who might be a serial killer.

Josh Baxter, the man behind the wheel, is a virtual stranger to Charlie. They met at the campus ride board, each looking to share the long drive home to Ohio. Both have good reasons for wanting to get away. For Charlie, it’s guilt and grief over the shocking murder of her best friend, who became the third victim of the man known as the Campus Killer. For Josh, it’s to help care for his sick father—or so he says.

The longer she sits in the passenger seat, the more Charlie notices there’s something suspicious about Josh, from the holes in his story about his father to how he doesn’t want her to see inside the trunk. As they travel an empty, twisty highway in the dead of night, an increasingly anxious Charlie begins to think she’s sharing a car with the Campus Killer. Is Josh truly dangerous? Or is Charlie’s jittery mistrust merely a figment of her movie-fueled imagination?

One thing is certain—Charlie has nowhere to run and no way to call for help. Trapped in a terrifying game of cat and mouse played out on pitch-black roads and in neon-lit parking lots, Charlie knows the only way to win is to survive the night.


Survive the Night is the fifth thriller from Riley Sager, the pseudonym of an author who lives in Princeton, New Jersey. Riley’s first novel, Final Girls, was a national and international bestseller that has been published in more than two dozen countries and won the ITW Thriller Award for Best Hardcover Novel. Sager’s subsequent novels The Last Time I LiedLock Every Door, and Home Before Dark, which received the Crimson Scribe Award by Suspense Magazine, were New York Times bestsellers.


Enjoy the conversation, shared from YouTube.