Ok ladies and gents. I’ve received another free ebook from blogging for books. This time it is A Girl in the Road by Monica Byrne. Obviously, all opinions are my own.
Wait … I’m confused.
This was the ongoing thought I had during much of A Girl in the Road by Monica Byrne. A Girl in the Road is a futuristic story of two individual, yet connected, girls. The chapter – “Books” alternate between first person narratives of each. I initially didn’t realize these stories are set in the future – I was at a great cultural disadvantage (I’ll get to that in a bit) and attributed my ignorance to not understanding Indian or African cultures. No exact dates are never given, but I came to realize the stories were not happening concurrently. It appears, based on discussion of political events still to occur, to be set in the late 21st Century. There is a lot of inventive terminology used for the futuristic items and opportunities. This was discovered as my ereader dictionary nor an internet search could tell me what these words mean. I was puzzled by these terms and failed to comprehend the capabilities they were able to perform.
The stories are set in India and Africa (and briefly, countries in between). I try to consider myself culturally competent (goes with my career choice), but my lack of knowledge was blatantly realized as I found my self lost trying to navigate and understand culture terms that are never translated nor described in layman’s terms.
Despite all of these misunderstandings, I must say the book was well written. I was drawn into the stories and emotions of the two protagonists (or one protagonist and one antagonist?) and felt empathy for each. I appreciate the author’s symbolism of the “Trail” – a long journey to discover oneself and find what is lacking. However, at points the symbolism went too far and I was again (not again!) completely lost. The snakes? The Semora werk – golden meaning? The girl in the road (Hey…?) with the black wings – is she supposed to mean something? The book was titled for her after all.
And then, I came to the end … and I’m left scratching my head.
My verdict is … ehh… With Ms. Byrnes writing style, I would like to read another of her works before I judge too deeply. (Should I throw in an ambiguous symbol here?) But, I’m scared that I will once again be confused – and that’s not somewhere I like to be!
Thanks for reading!