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ISBN:
978-0-9862898-1-1

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Paperback

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FROM I-80 TO GALWAY BAY

By James Christie

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IR Rating:
3.8
FROM I-80 TO GALWAY BAY is an enthralling, page turner of a novel about entangled, tragic lives and family secrets--both thought-provoking and riddled with layers of complexity. 

Early one Christmas morning in a driving snowstorm, an unfortunate crash on the I-80 leads to several tragic deaths. At the heart of the scenario are two survivors, Addie and Adam, who form the lead first-person narratives in James Christie’s recovery-spanning novel FROM I-80 TO GALWAY BAY.

Addie is a reformed party girl, married to Brad, and on the darkest of days her car is smashed to pieces in a collision with jackknifed trailer, briefly stopping her heart, and killing her beloved husband. Adam is the man who comes to save her, and in doing so seals the fate of his own young family. As Addie and Adam seek to recover, their lives run in parallel, but slowly become entangled in each other’s imaginations, drawn together by the accident. Addie is heartbroken without her stabilizing husband, and the crash has unveiled a complex past in which her parents–who have always been quite distant–are revealed to be guilty of inflicting some dark personal history in Addie’s life. She returns to her partying ways, sleeping around and slowly losing her grip on reality, as her relationships shatter and Adam becomes a focus of her fascination, especially when she learns of the crash’s impact on him.

Adam, meanwhile, becomes entangled in the complex life of his sister-in-law, also learning family secrets along the way, and finding his morals and ethics challenged deeply. He also goes to court to attach the blame for his family’s issues firmly on a truck company that had acted unethically in the build up to the big accident. The characters’ lives here are smashed to smithereens in an instant, and watching how they respond is the dark, central premise of this deeply emotional novel. The story is multifaceted, weaving in and out of the perspectives of our two main characters and a few others to explain their motivations and experiences along the way.

A clever aspect of the writing is that sympathies waver in different directions: none of the characters are entirely squeaky clean, but it’s broadly possible to understand many of their actions in context, and relate to the way they behave. The result is a ripping narrative, if one that’s slightly constrained in the way it ties so many strings together around a single incident and its diverging and converging narratives making the story feel slightly incredulous–the spinning yarns are all a bit too extreme and convenient to quite ring true. Like films that are solved by coincidences, there are aspects of the plot that feel a little but too opportune to entirely pass unnoticed. While the plot wouldn’t have the depth without this mix of slightly unlikely circumstances, it doesn’t entirely work with them, either: it can feel like there’s simply too much of a ‘butterfly effect’ from the one incident to entirely work.

FROM I-80 TO GALWAY BAY is an enthralling, page turner of a novel about entangled, tragic lives and family secrets–both thought-provoking and riddled with layers of complexity.

~James Hendicott for IndieReader

Publisher:
N/A

Publication Date:
N/A

Copyright Date:
N/A

ISBN:
978-0-9862898-1-1

Binding:
Paperback

U.S. SRP:
N/A

FROM I-80 TO GALWAY BAY

By James Christie

A heart-wrenching tale, James Christie’s FROM I-80 TO GALWAY BAY takes readers on an emotional journey of re-discovering the meaning of life after loss by bringing together captivating characters with intricate pasts.