Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Jess's Review: Running out of Road by Jillian Godsil

Running out of Road
by Jillian Godsil
Published May 11th 2011 by Jillian Godsil, via Smashwords
ISBN 001131088X 
Courtesy of author
Bella bursts into the world with an energy that defies any attempt at grace. Her dysfunctional past continues, bringing chaos and havoc to those around her, but especially ...herself. Onward she struggles, despite drugs, sex, murder, talking dogs, space ships, hermaphrodites and more. You name it. This young girl is normal. You're the crazy one! See what happens when Bella starts Running Out of Road. 

Jess’s Thoughts:
Warnings for language and sex scenes (not usually explicit but very frequent)

Running Out of Road focuses on Bella, a feisty girl with amazing boobs (she brings this up a lot!) who has a lot to say about everything. The novel starts up with the breakdown of Bella’s loveless marriage with a pub landlord in the fictional Irish town of Ballybawn and follows her as she changes jobs and lovers almost as quickly as I change my underwear! There doesn’t seem to be a clear plot as the story jumps around so much it’s hard to say what the novel is about except for Bella’s strange journey through the world.  The story only really gets going half-way through, which felt far too long into a book before being drawn in properly, but once it did get going I couldn’t put it down; I needed to know what happened next.

Bella is a wonderfully gutsy character who has gone through difficult times, sometimes of her own making, but refuses to be beaten and keeps on going. Jillian Godsil’s fluid first person narration allows us to really get to know Bella because we are always in her head. Unfortunately, this can also make the plot quite confusing and it is sometimes hard to know what has actually happened. It can also get quite exhausting being in Bella’s head constantly because although it gets us closer to the character it does feel rushed and can make exciting moments very boring.

A major disappointment was the sex. There was plenty of it, but sadly it was mainly unsexy sex, not quite cringe-worthy but mostly lukewarm.  However, there were some really witty one-liners, especially about sex, which were very funny and lifted the mood throughout the book.

Overall, Running Out of Road is recommended if you like first person narration, which is extremely well done, but the slow and often confused plot combined with unsexy sex (L) left me feeling disappointed.  

Rating: 2.5 Wine Glasses

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