Sunday, April 25, 2010

Going In Circles by Pamela Ribon

pamie's third book!!

This is a novel about Charlotte Goodman whose marriage is breaking up after only a few months. She's moved out and become unhinged. She's so detached from her life that she internally narrarates the action. And then she makes a new friend and discovers roller derby and is able to eventually start living again.

Going in Circles is, I think, a departure from Ribon's previous novels. It still has that very personal aspect, the reader is fully inside the neurosis of the protagonist. It's believable in the details and well-written in that signature Ribon style. It lacked the hilarity though. I think this book was sadder. Not sad like Why Girls are Weird with the death of a parent that left me sobbing in the backseat of my parent's SUV as we roadtripped to Iowa. But, gloomy.

Charlotte is really Broken, just like her derby name - Hard Broken. And it's sad. And you feel for her. There are some scenes sprinkled with humor, the dark scenario lighened with some silliness, but overall this is a much more somber look at someone's life. Alternatively, Charlotte is a grown-up. She doesn't seem petulant or irresponsible or moody. She seems like she's been run over by a Mac truck. She also isn't as insecure as previous Ribon characters, possibly because her circumstances are so much more dire. I think this story shows growth from Ribon.

Totally enjoyable reading (contrary to what I just wrote about it being sad). I read it in a day and I learned about roller derby and I laughed out loud once and cried a little, and what more do you really want in a book? I heart pamie, and as always look forward to her next endeavor.

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