Deadroads is Riopelle's debut novel and it's a far cry from your usual fantasy/horror. I keep finding myself wanting to call it a slow read--not because of a lack of suspense, because there's plenty of that, but because of its richly nuanced language and tightly woven characters. You can't rush this one without missing out on both critical details and overall experience.
Centred around three main characters, all siblings, the story is as much about a coming to terms with personal demons and past ghosts as it is about dealing with the physical kinds. The story struggles a bit to get going, but once it finds its stride, you find yourself tugged along much as if you're caught in a deceptively gentle river current that keeps picking up speed, heading for rapids you know are there but can't quite see coming.
All in all, a vivid, languorous, chilling tale of the supernatural. Recommended for fans of dark fantasy and horror, especially if you enjoy a more literary approach to your fiction.
One note of caution to prospective readers: Riopelle employs a liberal use of French words and expressions, particularly in the opening of the book (the characters are from the Bayou). For the non-French speaker, this could be both distracting and off-putting, but if you're willing to give up actual meaning in favor of tone, you should be okay. And the story really will be worth the effort.