Review: Desperation Road by Michael Farris Smith



Synopsis: One night, eleven years ago, Russell did something stupid, made a terrible mistake – he drank and drove and ended up killing someone. Now he’s done his time in prison and he just wants to settle down into a normal life, but there are some people who are trying their hardest not to let that happen. On the same day as Russell’s release, troubled Maben, and her daughter, are trudging through the grass along the interstate. That night they end up in a motel with no money left and Maben decides there’s something she’s got to do to get them some cash. The night ends, instead, with a dead deputy and Maben pulling her daughter off running. The next day, Russell and Maben cross paths and Russell has to decide if it’s his life, or theirs, that he’s going to save.

Now they lived different lives, different from what any of them probably imagined. How could you imagine the complexities of what might come?

This is a story about revenge, redemption and acceptance. Quite a different novel to what I’m used to but I do like to step outside my comfort zone every once in awhile. I ended up really enjoying this book, even though, as the title suggests, it’s a little bit dark and depressing at times.

What I loved the most about this book was how realistic it was. There are millions of mystery thrillers out there, that I read on the daily, that are based around “normal” people’s lives, but we know, could never be real. This story, on the other hand, is perfectly plausible to imagine in a bit of a down-and-out town. With inherently flawed but morally conscious people and others who are driven to madness and evil by their deep-rooted emotions, this is the kind of novel that can really hit home.

Russell, although flawed in many ways, is one of the most likeable characters I’ve ever come across. He means no harm to anyone and does everything out of the good of his heart.

My only issue with this novel was the ending, that I felt could have been grown upon. It felt a bit dead-ended and cut off, but other than that, this was a beautiful story. It’s by no far an easy read but it’s a very character driven drama that’s bound to please.

Buy it here!

Thanks to Netgalley and Little, Brown and Company for giving me the opportunity to read this in exchange for an honest review.

6 Replies to “Review: Desperation Road by Michael Farris Smith”

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