Item description for Something Down the Road by B. K. Smith...
Once high school is over for Rast and Holly, their recipe for fairy tale love turns into a sequence of events as grisly as The Grimm Brothers' work or, say, as Angela Carter's own remakes of fairyland. Indicative of future matters is Rast's insistence upon driving two-and-a-half miles backwards to the production of the Senior Play. And at the prom, the sultry country singer Shelby Lee accommodates Rast's lust when Holly refuses to. But Shelby Lee is a wandering star, and Rast above all, wants the home he never had growing up with an abusive, alcoholic mother. He wants the fairytale he had with Holly until high school ended. And he does a great deal more than drive a few miles backward to retrieve that time.
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Reviews - What do customers think about Something Down the Road?
DEEP SOUTH BACKWOODS SCARES YOU TO DEATH! Mar 23, 2003
...Thrillers seem to have more resonance when they take place in the backwoods--especially the Deep South backwoods of Alabama. Every novelist who wants to thrill and chill and puzzle a late-night reader should spend a few days walking about in a small town on the edge of a big wooded area deep in the heart of The Heart of Alabama. Something's bound to happen if you hang around long enough.
This novel presents a good/bad little slice of somebody else's life--a life you might want to know about but certainly would never want to live. Such lives are best left inside books for us to peep into but never get too close to.
It's easy to look down on the people who inhabit this book--until you realize that some of them have experienced the same things as you. The character Holly is tortured by her sadistic First Grade teacher and redeemed by her benevolent Second Grade teacher. Strange, so was I. Holly's best friend Billy turns into a fugitive from justice. Funny, I had friends like that, too--even though I was not what folks in the 1940's called a "country hick." I even knew friends who had seen UFO's, just as Holly and Billy did. And so on. Even though this is a backwoods story, a "city" reader like me can begin to realize that we all share very similar backgrounds. It's just the locations that are different. I even knew a serial killer-to-be in high school, perhaps as demented as the killer in this little Gothic novel.
Holly's friend Billy is a serial killer, but the reader never quite understands why. Just like real life: the more we study folks who don't behave properly, the less we understand them. Some people are just plain beyond explanation. Billy's murders are a bit too lovingly described by the author, who shows more compassion for the killer than for any of his victims. Guess that's what makes for interesting reading. The writer Robert Bloch had that talent--his demented characters and their actions were lovingly described, while things the "good guys" and "gals" did seemed bland by comparison. Bloch's Norman Bates was by far the most intriguing character in the novel PSYCHO--and the author of SOMETHING DOWN THE ROAD is more interested in Billy Raston's activities than in the goings-on of other people sprinkled throughout this novel. Go figure--we remember Hannibal Lector, Jack the Ripper and Norman Bates in great detail, but we seldom dwell on the grief the victims and their families experienced.
It's easy to try and understand someone who exists only on paper. Nice and encapsulated between covers, nice and imprisoned so that we don't have to deal with that person, in person.
Nice little story. Horrible, a little sexy, a little sad, and just enough in touch with reality to make you think it might have happened.
WOW!!!!!!!!!!! Mar 11, 2003
I have read many books in my days. This book is by far the best one I have ever read. I was constantly thinking "Oh, my God!". I could not put it down. It keeps you wondering what will happen next. It is very suspenseful and the incidents were described in such great detail that you could almost see them happening. At the end I was left thinking, this woman (the author) had an incredible imagination.
Letter to the Author Feb 27, 2003
I had the opportunity to meet B.K. Smith in Jasper, AL at her book signing. At the time I knew nothing about her book other than it was set in the area surronding the town I live in. In the process of reading this book I was able to grasp the reality that the author was trying to achieve. I felt that the book was suspenseful with a sense of romantic irony. It was everything that I love in a good book. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would reccomend it to anyone, especially if they are from Walker County, Alabama.
Range of emotions Dec 3, 2002
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It really played with my emotions in that I felt torn about wanting a murderer to go free even with all of the "bad things" I knew about him. At the same time, I was angry with Holly, but I also felt sorry for her because I knew she also cared very deeply for Rast and felt so much guilt about the path he had chosen. I thought the writing was wonderful, I could literally see in my mind's eye the scenery that Smith wrote about with much detail, however, not so much detail, I became bored. It was a wonderful book about love, lust, bad decisions, and trying to correct past wrongs.
Author has you pulling for the bad guy Nov 11, 2002
Smith has you befriending a murderer, wanting to help him escape his past and the authorities that seek him. Holly comes off more the bad guy yet you know she loves Rast. Will there be a sequel?