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Month in review

Reviews
Amulet 8: Supernova by Kazu Kibuishi
Baddawi by Leila Abdelrazaq
The Benefits of Being an Octopus by Ann Braden
Bluecrowne by Kate Milford
Bluff and Bran and the Snowdrift by Meg Rutherford
Cloudette by Tom Lichtenheld
The Doughnut Fix by Jessie Janowitz
Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire
Echo's Sister by Paul Mosier
Elementary, She Read by Vicki Delany
Foe by Iain Reid
Hold The Cream Cheese, Kill The Lox by Sharon Kahn
Holiday Grind by Cleo Coyle
How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford
Lavender Lies by Susan Wittig Albert
The Legend of Korra: Turf Wars Part Two by Michael Dante DiMartino and Irene Koh
Louisiana's Way Home by Kate DiCamillo
Lowriders Blast from the Past by Cathy Camper and Raul III
The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl by Stacy McAnulty
No Fixed Address by Susin Nielsen
Once Upon a Spine by Kate Carlisle
The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall
Personal Demons by Nimue Brown
The Reader by Traci Chee
Secret Coders 4: Robots & Repeats by Gene Luen Yang
Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Sodom Road Exit by Amber Dawn
The Shadow Cipher by Laura Ruby
24 Hours in Nowhere by Dusti Bowling

Miscellaneous
Cybils Update (November 06)
Cybils Update (November 13)
Cybils Update (November 20)
Cybils Update (November 27)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 05)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 12)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 19)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 26)
October 2018 Sources
October 2018 Summary

Road Essays
FFCC99: FF99CC and FF9999: orphans in the wildlands by maze and labyrinth
FF9933: orphan wildlands blue highway
From 00CC33 to 33CCCC: a road narrative analysis of Haunting of Hill House, book and Netflix television series
A Map to the Road Narrative Spectrum
Road Narrative Update for October 2018
The three faces of Eleanor

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish



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Sodom Road Exit: 11/13/18

Sodom Road Exit

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.

Three stars

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