Book Review: ‘Roadside Attractions’ by Eric Lahti

Roadside Attractions by Eric Lahti

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


The story opens with what, under normal circumstances, would be a tragic death – but the victim’s attitude is refreshingly different. Having spent her brief adult life in the margins of Hollywood – as repeated victim of typical Hollywood men, and being driven to drugs as a consequence – she finds in death the blessed release of no longer having to deal with the burdensome liability of a tangible female body.

The cynicism is darkly hilarious. But the characters are still (nearly) all ones you would root for. Even when you find out, at the mid-point, what the most enigmatic one has in mind, you still feel a brief temptation to take their side after all the torment they’ve been put through…

The backdrop, as the two unlikely main protagonists first ply their trade chasing troublesome ghosts from people’s houses and then become drawn ever deeper into an all-encompassing supernatural conflict between evil and, er, even more evil, is reminiscent of ‘American Gods’. But with the difference that here we have realistic (even though mainly supernatural) relatable characters, each with something to fight for, in a well-woven plot. I mean, these characters are so true-to-life that you even catch one of the women grumbling about the inadequate size of jeans pockets.

If you like an all-American road trip with a difference, including atmospheric landscape, crackling magic, and some long-drawn-out and marvellously gruesome fight scenes (immortal characters can sustain so many more injuries than the rest of us) then this is the read for you.



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