Thursday, August 26, 2010

Travis Thrasher's "Solitary"

Chris Buckley moves with his mother to a small mountain town in North Carolina named Solitary. She’s divorced her husband, who discovered God and forgot his family. Solitary is where she grew up; she and Chris move into her brother’s cabin. Her brother had disappeared a year before.

It’s the typical new-kid-at-school experience for Chris. Almost. He defends a kid against some bullies – and even the kid being bullied tells him it was the wrong move. He meets Jocelyn Evans and her friends Rachel and Poe, and totally flips for Jocelyn. Except everyone starts warning him against her.

And then there’s that church that is the church in town and the one where the pastor’s sermons say nothing about Jesus but a lot about death. And the muddy footprints near the cabin; someone is watching them. And the email warnings to stay away from Jocelyn. And the small group who seem to worship by themselves. And his mom getting chloroformed. And then Chris getting chloroformed. And the town doesn't celebrate Christmas.

This is Solitary, the first of four Young Adult novels by Travis Thrasher. The author of 11 previous novels for adults (and some ripping good books ranging from love stories to suspense), Thrasher has created in “Solitary” a combination of suspense, nightmare and the anguish of a teenage boy who is head over heels in his first love.

The pace simply doesn’t let up. Thrasher has structured the novel with short chapters and sparse, clean prose that add speed and propel the reader forward.

This first novel introduces the key lines of action. And while there is a resolution, the novel is really setting up the rest of the series. Yes, I know it’s a Young Adult novel, but at the breathless end I was already feeling the internal clamor for “more Solitary.”

I’m hooked. Your teenagers will be, too. So will you.


Travis Thrasher’s web site.

Travis Thrasher’s blog, The Journey Is Everything.

The trailer for Solitary on YouTube.

(Yes, Federal Trade Commission, I received this book from the publisher's agent to do a review. But I would have bought it anyway.)


Travis Thrasher said...

Thanks Glynn for continuing to follow my writing journey. Amazing to see readers like yourself. Life is so busy and there are so many things to do and read and see--so thank you so much for your encouragement and support. Really appreciate you!

SimplyDarlene said...

Okay, it's a little daunting to follow a comment made by the author. Now I forgot what I was going to say. (And we all know that doesn't happen often with the likes of me.)

Great review and tantalizing taste of the story!


Maureen said...

I admire your all-encompassing reading habits.

Louise Gallagher said...

Me too -- admire your all-encompasing reading habits -- and maybe it's for young at heart adults?