Sodom Road Exit: 11/13/18
Sodom Road Exit by Amber Dawn is a Canadian road narrative about a young woman forced to move home when her financial options run out in Toronto. Starla Mia Martin's credit cards have been frozen, she's been evicted from her apartment, and she's been kicked out of university. There's nowhere to go back to border town she grew up in.
It's the summer of 1990 and Crystal Beach is a shadow of its former self. Once upon a time it was a thriving tourist destination but the amusement park has long since closed and all that's left is a bar and a dubiously run campsite.
While riding the one bus that loops through the area, Starla hears that a young man is heading out to the campground to apply for a job. More on a dare than on actually wanting it, Starla races him to the campsite and nails the job. See, she's nearly as burned out as the woman who runs the camp, so they're simpatico.
In the background of all of this is a ghost who has taken a liking to Starla and has ties to both the campground and the closed amusement park.
I have to admit, even though the ghost makes an early appearance, much in the way that Iain Reid drops hints in I'm Thinking of Ending Things (2017), I wasn't sure what to make of their appearance. Part of the problem for me is that Sodom Road Exit is roughly three times the length either of Iain Reid's books. So there's a lot of room to hide and obfuscate.
In terms of the road narrative project, once the ghost is taken into account, the book falls into the scarecrow/minotaur uhoria cornfield (99CCFF). Starla and the ghost alternate between protectors of the area (scarecrows) and feeling trapped by the area (minotaurs). The location of Crystal Beach right on the water, combined with the description of trees at the water in the campground signal a cornfield/tkaronto. Finally, the haunting and Starla's obsession with Crystal Beach's make this narrative a uhoric one.