Do parents have the right to keep painful origin stories from their children as they grow up? That is the question novelist and family counselor Lynne Reeves Griffin explores in her latest thriller, DARK RIVERS TO CROSS  (Crooked Lane Books, November 8, 2022). Set in the picturesque Maine woods, the novel sensitively explores inherited trauma, adoption, and the impact of family secrets.

Lynne talks with Authorlink about the story and about her writing career, including some interesting guidance for writers trying to break into publishing and marketing their books.

As both novelist (Lynne Reeves) and family counselor (Lynne Griffin), Lynne is in her element writing thrillers about social issues. Her previous book, The Dangers of an Ordinary Night (review copies available) was a twisty crime story that addressed addiction and the blind spots we have in our closest relationships. The New York Times’ review of the book said the “shock of the opening gradually recedes into something else—a sensitive examination of a dysfunctional family and a full-of-secrets community that claims to be seeking the truth.”

In the novel, for years Lena Blackwell has shown her sons that she’ll do whatever it takes to run a successful river lodge, when what she’s really doing is trying to keep her children in the dark about their violent past. When one of her boys begins to uncover his trauma history, she is forced to confront her own deceptive nature, jeopardizing the very relationships she’s lied to protect.

For many readers, the trauma inheritance shapes their lives in far-reaching ways. And while it is a legacy one cannot escape but must endure, inhabiting fictional narratives like Reeves’ offer readers a safe, vicarious path toward emotional resilience.  With chilling scenes reminiscent of Nancy Price’s Sleeping with the Enemy and landscapes as evocative as those depicted in John Irving’s Last Night in Twisted RiverDARK RIVERS TO CROSS will linger in readers’ minds and spark ongoing conversations about the topics it addresses.


“In my own life, and in my work as a writer and counselor, I’m endlessly fascinated by the extraordinary ways family trauma changes relationships, creating disparity between what we want for ourselves and the ones we love, and what we will do to look away from the sorrow that darkens our lives. For many of us, the trauma inheritance shapes our lives in far reaching ways, yet it is a legacy we cannot escape but must endure. Inhabiting fictional narratives offers a path toward the kind of emotional resilience that heals.” —Lynne Reeves Griffin

Lynne Reeves Griffin is an internationally recognized family counselor, public speaker, teacher and writer of fiction and non-fiction. Her work has been published in Parents, Psychology Today, Solstice Literary Magazine, Chautauqua Journal, Craft Literary, Fiction Writers Review, Brain, ChildYour Teen, and many other outlets. She’s a go-to expert to discuss contemporary family life and preventive mental health in the media, with appearances that  include WBUR Radio’s Morning Edition and WCVB’s Chronicle.

Advance Praise for DARK RIVERS TO CROSS

“Reeves writes a powerfully moving exploration of how far a mother will go to keep her children safe–an intimate portrait of a family defined by secrets and lies. Riveting, propulsive, and haunting, with bonus points for its wilderness setting, I loved Dark Rivers to Cross!”—Karen Dionne, author of the international bestseller, The Marsh King’s Daughter

“With an obvious love of Maine’s wilderness, Lynne Reeves delivers a heart-in-your-throat page-turner that shines a compassionate light on the injustices surrounding domestic violence and the failures of our mental healthcare system. A story about resilience and love, identity and self-discovery, Dark Rivers to Cross hits all the right notes and will keep readers guessing until the nail-biting end.” —Julie Carrick Dalton, author of Waiting for the Night Song

“An emotional and thrilling story about the ghosts that carry and bury trauma in our own lives, and the role this plays in the choices we make. DARK RIVERS TO CROSS will keep you turning pages into the night to discover what Lena will do to save her children from their past and the truth.” —Catherine McKenzie, USA Today bestselling author of I’ll Never Tell


Buy this book: Amazon (Print)  (Kindle)