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If you’re an avid audiobook listener looking for your next thrilling read, you won’t want to miss Tim Johnston’s latest release, “The Current.” In this audiobook review, we’ll explore the story, characters, writing style, themes, and critical reception of this novel/audio experience. As a prominent author with a talent for weaving suspenseful and thought-provoking tales, Tim Johnston delivers another gripping narrative that is sure to leave a lasting impact on listeners. Let’s delve into the world of “The Current” and see what makes this audiobook a must-listen.

Overview of “The Current”

“The Current” by Tim Johnston is a mystery-thriller audiobook set around a devastating car accident that takes the lives of two young women. The novel is a quest to uncover the true events and facts surrounding the accident. Fueled by powerful storytelling and compelling character development, the narrative revolves around the entwined lives of the accident’s survivors and victims’ families.

The audiobook’s main characters include Audrey Sutter and Caroline Price, the two young women who are killed in the car accident. The surviving characters are their respective fathers, Ron Sutter and Eryk Price, and two college students who witness the accident, Nathan and Darcy.

Throughout the audiobook, their past and present lives intertwine in unexpected ways, leading to a gripping narrative about family, loss, and ultimately, redemption.

Writing Style

Tim Johnston is a master storyteller who knows how to captivate readers with his writing style. He has a unique way of describing characters, events, and places that transports the reader to the story’s world. His prose is elegant and straightforward, devoid of unnecessary fluff, and keeps the storytelling immersive and engaging.

The use of descriptive language is remarkable, allowing readers to visualize the story’s events and emotions vividly. In “The Current,” Johnston’s writing style plays a significant role in establishing the story’s haunting and eerie atmosphere. He masterfully builds suspense with his carefully chosen words and meticulous attention to detail.

Johnston’s storytelling is powerful and leaves a lasting impression on the reader. He weaves a complex web of subplots, twists, and turns that keep the reader hooked until the very end. His ability to create meaningful, multi-dimensional characters makes the story feel authentic and relatable.

Overall, “The Current” showcases Tim Johnston’s exceptional writing style and storytelling skills, making it a must-read for anyone seeking a riveting and thought-provoking audiobook experience.

Setting and Atmosphere

“The Current” by Tim Johnston portrays a compelling setting that blends history and nature, capturing the essence of the Mississippi River and Minnesota. Johnston’s ability to conjure up vivid atmospheric descriptions immerses the listener in the story, creating a sense of place that is both awe-inspiring and haunting.

The novel is set in the small town of New Hope, where two college girls go missing after their car plunges into an icy river. As the story progresses, the investigation takes the characters on a journey through rural Minnesota, into the heart of the river communities. Johnston’s writing introduces the listener to the raw and rugged landscape and the unique sense of community that comes from living near the water.

The atmospheric descriptions make “The Current” an evocative audiobook, with every element of the environment playing a role in building an immersive experience. From the icy river to the snowy landscape and the small community, every element of the setting contributes to the overall sense of melancholy and unease that pervades throughout the tale. The combination of these factors creates a deeply moving and engaging atmosphere that listeners will not soon forget.

setting and atmosphere

Plot Analysis

In “The Current,” Tim Johnston crafts a complex and multi-layered plot that keeps listeners on the edge of their seats. The story follows two women, Audrey and Caroline, as they navigate the aftermath of a tragic car accident that claimed the life of Caroline’s younger brother and another young woman. As the investigation into the accident unfolds, Johnston weaves in a series of shocking twists and revelations that upend everything the characters and listeners thought they knew.

The novel’s structure is non-linear, with Johnston skillfully jumping back and forth in time to gradually reveal new information and deepen the characters’ motivations. The twists and turns come at a breakneck pace, leaving listeners constantly guessing and anticipating the next revelation.

Although the plot can feel dense and labyrinthine at times, Johnston’s deft plotting and intricate characterizations keep it grounded and engaging. He masterfully ties together loose threads and seemingly disparate storylines, creating a satisfying and emotionally resonant conclusion.

The Major Twists in “The Current”

Twist Impact on the Story
Caroline’s Secret Reveals new motivations and deepens the mystery surrounding the accident
Henry’s Motivations Shatters assumptions about Henry’s character and serves as a catalyst for the novel’s final act
The Identity of the Second Victim Changes the perception of the accident and underscores the importance of memory and perspective in the story

Overall, “The Current” is a masterclass in plot construction and pacing, with Johnston expertly balancing suspense, mystery, and emotional depth to create a truly unforgettable listening experience.

Character Development

One of the most significant strengths of “The Current” is the remarkable depth of character development portrayed throughout the audiobook. Tim Johnston meticulously crafts each character, unveiling their individual complexities and motivations through alternating perspectives and timelines.

The protagonist, Audrey, is a determined and independent young woman haunted by her past. Through her character development, listeners gain insight into her inner struggles and insecurities, as well as her unwavering drive for justice.

Similarly, the antagonist, Gary, is not portrayed as a one-dimensional villain but rather as a complex individual with his motivations and personal demons. Johnston delves into Gary’s background and psyche, illuminating his twisted sense of morality and the forces that drive his actions.

Moreover, Johnston also carefully fleshes out secondary characters such as Caroline and Josh, making them integral parts of the story and providing a diverse range of personalities and perspectives.

The multifaceted character development in “The Current” adds depth and nuance to the audiobook’s plot and themes, immersing listeners in a richly immersive narrative experience.

Narration Performance

The success of an audiobook often relies heavily on the narration performance and the voice actors’ ability to bring the story and characters to life. In “The Current,” the audiobook’s narration is top-notch, with skilled voice actors adeptly portraying various characters. Their performances enhance the listener’s experience, delivering an immersive and engaging narrative.

The narration style is clear and easy to follow, with appropriate inflections and tone variations to highlight key scenes and emotions. The voice actors’ performances create distinct characterizations, making it easy to differentiate between each character’s dialogue and personality.

Overall, the combination of the author’s storytelling and character development with the voice actors’ narration performance elevates “The Current” audiobook to a thrilling and captivating experience.

narration performance

Themes Explored

In “The Current,” Tim Johnston explores several themes and motifs that add depth and complexity to the story. The theme of redemption is evident in the characters’ journeys towards finding absolution for their past mistakes. Likewise, the theme of loss is explored through the characters’ experiences with grief and the consequences of their actions.

The power of memory is another significant motif in the audiobook, with characters grappling with how memories shape their identities and impact their relationships. Secrets and the consequences of hiding them also play a significant role in the story, underscoring the idea that the past is never truly buried.

Overall, “The Current” is a thought-provoking exploration of these themes and motifs, and how they shape the human experience.

Pacing and Suspense

Tim Johnston’s “The Current” is a masterclass in pacing and tension-building, keeping listeners on the edge of their seats throughout the audiobook. Johnston’s writing style adds to the suspense by alternating between accelerating the pace with heart-pounding action and slowing it with introspective moments that ramp up the tension.

The audiobook’s pacing, which is influenced by the writing style, is also exceptional. The narrator’s voice and inflections expertly mirror the writing’s changes in tempo, drawing listeners further into the story and the characters’ emotions. The building of suspense, known for making listeners squirm in anticipation, is well-timed, culminating in unexpected outcomes that are both satisfying and thrilling.

The pacing and skillful building of suspense and tension in “The Current” make the novel an excellent listen for those fascinated by the craft of storytelling and seek to enjoy an anxiety-provoking yet tantalizing story. This skillful combination of plotting and pacing will appeal to fans of true crime and thriller audiobooks.

Comparison with Other Works by Tim Johnston

In this section, we will compare “The Current” with other works by Tim Johnston, highlighting similarities and differences in themes and writing style.

One of the most notable similarities is the emphasis on character development. Johnston has a talent for creating complex, multidimensional characters in all of his works. In “The Current,” we see this with the protagonist, Audrey Sutter, and the antagonist, Charlie Crabtree. Similarly, in Johnston’s novel “Descent,” readers are introduced to a cast of characters with deep emotional complexity, including the main character, Caitlin.

On the other hand, one significant difference between “The Current” and Johnston’s other works is the setting. While most of his other books are set in the mountains of Colorado, “The Current” takes place in the Midwest, specifically along the Mississippi River. This change in location grants new opportunities for atmospheric descriptions and clever plot devices.

Johnston’s writing style is consistent across all his works – descriptive, atmospheric, and lyrical – creating a beautifully written and immersive experience for the reader. In both “The Current” and “Descent,” he expertly employs twists and turns to keep the audience on edge and guessing until the very end.

The Bottom Line

In comparison with Tim Johnston’s other works, “The Current” stands out for its unique setting and character relationships, while still maintaining Johnston’s signature writing style and use of suspenseful twists. Whether you are already a fan of Johnston’s work or just discovering it for the first time, “The Current” is a worthy addition to your reading list.

Critical Reception

The “The Current” audiobook by Tim Johnston has received overwhelmingly positive reviews and critical reception since its release. On Goodreads, it has an average rating of 4.03 out of 5 based on over 17,000 ratings. Similarly, on Amazon, it has an average rating of 4.2 out of 5 based on over 2,500 customer reviews.

Many critics praise Johnston’s writing style and his ability to weave an intricate and suspenseful plot. The New York Times Book Review notes that “Johnston’s writing is unshowy yet assured, and he has a talent for rendering the flat and featureless places where people go to escape their pasts and make new lives.” Publishers Weekly describes the book as a “mesmerizing and haunting masterpiece” with “gorgeous prose.”

Overall, “The Current” has been praised for its well-developed characters, atmospheric descriptions, and gripping plot. It is highly recommended for listeners looking for a thrilling and thought-provoking narrative.

Impact and Recommendation

Overall, “The Current” audiobook has a significant impact on listeners due to its gripping plot, complex characters, and skillful storytelling. The audiobook’s vivid setting and atmospheric descriptions further enhance the overall experience.

For those seeking a thrilling and thought-provoking narrative, “The Current” is a highly recommended listen. The audiobook’s plot twists and turns, combined with the depth of character development and the stunning narration performance, make it a must-listen for lovers of the thriller genre.

Furthermore, “The Current” has received critical acclaim from reviewers, further attesting to its quality as an audiobook. It has garnered rave reviews from reputable sources such as Booklist and Publishers Weekly, earning a place among the best audiobooks of the year.

Overall, “The Current” is a powerful and engaging audiobook that will leave listeners on the edge of their seats. Its impact and recommendation make it a standout choice for those looking for a thrilling and captivating listening experience.


Overall, “The Current” by Tim Johnston is a well-crafted and gripping audiobook that is sure to captivate listeners looking for a thrilling narrative. With its skillful writing style, atmospheric setting, and intricate plot development, this audiobook offers a thought-provoking exploration of themes such as memory, loss, and redemption.

The character development in “The Current” is also noteworthy, with the protagonist and antagonist featuring a diverse range of personalities and backgrounds that adds depth to the story. The narration performance by the voice actors is commendable, bringing the characters and story to life in a truly captivating way.

The pacing and building of suspense in “The Current” make for a truly engaging listening experience, and the plot twists and turns keep listeners on the edge of their seats until the very end.

In comparison with other works by Tim Johnston, “The Current” stands out in its exploration of themes and atmospheric descriptions. The critical reception of the audiobook has also been positive, with reviewers praising the writing style and storytelling techniques employed by Tim Johnston.

If you are looking for an audiobook that is both thrilling and thought-provoking, “The Current” is definitely recommended. Its impact is sure to leave a lasting impression upon its listeners, making it a must-listen for anyone seeking a captivating narrative.


What is “The Current” audiobook about?

“The Current” audiobook is a thrilling mystery novel written by Tim Johnston. It follows the story of two college friends, Audrey and Caroline, who embark on a road trip that takes a dark turn when they become involved in a fatal accident. As the past and present intertwine, they must uncover the truth behind the tragedy and confront the haunting secrets of their small town.

Who are the main characters in “The Current” audiobook?

The main characters in “The Current” audiobook are Audrey Sutter and Caroline Price, two childhood friends who reunite after years of being apart. Other important characters include Sheriff Russell, who aims to unravel the truth behind the accident, and Ben Ray, a mysterious figure with ties to Audrey’s past.

What is the writing style like in “The Current” audiobook?

The writing style in “The Current” audiobook is captivating and lyrical. Tim Johnston employs vivid descriptions and evocative language to bring the setting and characters to life. The narrative is filled with suspenseful moments and introspective passages, showcasing the author’s skill in crafting a compelling story.

How does the setting contribute to the atmosphere in “The Current” audiobook?

The setting plays a crucial role in establishing the atmospheric tone of “The Current” audiobook. Tim Johnston expertly describes the rugged landscapes of the Midwest, creating a sense of isolation and foreboding. The small town environment adds to the eerie atmosphere, amplifying the mystery and tension throughout the story.

Are there unexpected plot twists in “The Current” audiobook?

Yes, “The Current” audiobook is filled with unexpected plot twists that keep listeners engaged and on the edge of their seats. Tim Johnston masterfully constructs a narrative full of surprises, taking readers on a rollercoaster of suspense and intrigue.

How are the characters developed in “The Current” audiobook?

The character development in “The Current” audiobook is rich and nuanced. Tim Johnston delves deep into the complex psychology of his characters, exploring their fears, motivations, and personal growth throughout the story. Readers will witness the transformation of the protagonist, Audrey, as she confronts her own demons and seeks redemption.

What can you tell me about the narration performance in “The Current” audiobook?

The narration performance in “The Current” audiobook is exceptional. The voice actors skillfully bring the characters to life, capturing their emotions and distinct personalities. Their delivery enhances the overall listening experience, immersing listeners in the gripping and atmospheric world of the story.

What are some of the themes explored in “The Current” audiobook?

“The Current” audiobook delves into various themes and motifs, including redemption, loss, and the power of memory. It explores the profound impact of past events on present lives and the search for truth in the face of adversity. The audiobook also raises themes of justice and the consequences of secrets.

How is the pacing and suspense in “The Current” audiobook?

The pacing in “The Current” audiobook is skillfully crafted, keeping listeners engaged from start to finish. Tim Johnston expertly builds suspense and tension, gradually unraveling the layers of the mystery while maintaining a sense of urgency. The audiobook’s pacing effectively heightens the dramatic impact of pivotal moments.

Can “The Current” be compared to other works by Tim Johnston?

Yes, “The Current” can be compared to other works by Tim Johnston in terms of its gripping narrative and exploration of complex themes. However, each of Johnston’s works has its own unique elements, and “The Current” stands out for its atmospheric setting and compelling plot twists. Comparisons can be drawn to his previous novels, such as “Descent” and “The Irish Girl.”

How has “The Current” been received by critics?

“The Current” has received positive critical reception. Critics have praised Tim Johnston’s masterful storytelling and the atmospheric nature of the audiobook. Reviews have highlighted the compelling characters, well-crafted plot, and the author’s ability to keep readers guessing until the final pages.

Would you recommend “The Current” audiobook?

Absolutely. “The Current” is highly recommended for listeners seeking a thrilling and thought-provoking narrative. It combines elements of mystery, suspense, and emotional depth, making it an engaging choice for fans of the genre. Tim Johnston’s exceptional writing and the superb narration performance make “The Current” an audiobook worth experiencing.

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