Monday, March 18, 2024

Snow Road Station

Snow Road Station / Elizabeth Hay
TO: Knopf Canada, c2023.
230 p.

I haven't been reading as many current Canadian novels as usual, but I did pick this one up recently after someone mentioned how much she liked it. I found it okay, a little bit slow-going but overall a decent read. I think I might have enjoyed it more if I'd read some of Hay's earlier books, as apparently these characters are ones who've reappeared from other stories. 

Actress Lulu Blake is starring in a demanding play in the winter of 2008. But she dried on stage, and as the story opens she is heading through the snow back to her past in Snow Road Station, Ontario. Her brother & his family, as well as her childhood best friend, all still live there, and she's retreating to lick her wounds. Oh, and also to attend a family wedding. And she stays long enough to help with the (thoroughly described) spring maple sugaring process. 

Not much really happens here. Lulu has a traumatic encounter with her friend's ex, a nasty man. She gets fired. But she also rebuilds relationships with her brother, niece and friend, and meets a rugged new man who she falls into an uncomplicated physical relationship with. It's all so nice. 

I'm not really sure what to say about this one. It was okay. A little plodding, a little peaceful, lots of  family stories of the past. It's the kind of book I often enjoy. I didn't dislike this one, but found it a little bland and a bit forgettable. One thing that I did find slightly confusing was that Lulu was 62, but sounded like she was at least a decade older. It was hard to remember how old everyone was supposed to be! Probably best for readers who are already fans of Elizabeth Hay's work. 

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