Rock Island Rock (A Crossroads Thriller Book 2)

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Though younger, July is active and resourceful. Dell is passive, as he basically allows others to determine the direction of his life. Even when he is emotionally and existentially paralyzed, July is exponentially more dynamic than Dell, which exposes Ford's disdain for plot. Both authors are wordsmiths with considerable descriptive powers, but Rhodes puts his talent in service to a compelling plot, while Ford's undeniable skill is trapped in the bleak landscape of Dell's passivity.

July will be back, while Dell is finished. Jan 17, Robert Pajer rated it really liked it. The narrative is elegant, the characters are captivating, and the atmosphere, though at times bleak, is alluring. Rock Island Line is not for the fainthearted, and some may find it somber, dark, and grueling, but if you desire finely crafted literature this one is for you. May 31, Shane Schmidt rated it really liked it Shelves: Rock Island Line is an excellent book. Four and a half stars on my chart. I really did enjoy it. I thought the ending, especially the penultimate chapters, was a bit clumsy.

It read like the author felt he had to end the story and concocted a conclusion that didn't seem to flow from the rest of the story. July, our protagonist, has a fairly lucky experience despite misfortune. His luck runs out. I thought I could read the author channeling his character through the language and tenor of his writ Rock Island Line is an excellent book. I thought I could read the author channeling his character through the language and tenor of his writing. As July matures, so does the novel's voice and narrative.

A paragraph from the first third of the novel reads very differently from a paragraph of the last third. I sort of liked this. This is not a first-person narrative so I think the change in tone is kind of like looking at brush strokes in a painting. In the end, I recommend this book. It is controlled, well-written, and easily enjoyed. Dec 27, Judy rated it really liked it. Rock Island Line is a dark, extremely well written novel. The author creates very believable characters and does a good job in capturing the era and the places in which the characters live.

The theme of the novel is about sudden, violent loss, and ho The Rock Island Line is written by David Rhodes, who also wrote Driftless. The theme of the novel is about sudden, violent loss, and how the survivors deal with the loss and move on with their lives. The book ends with a real punch, which left me just sitting there, stunned!

This is an outstanding book, and I would gladly recommend it. I think the reason I liked Driftless a little better is because, although it too, delt with loss, it was a more gentle book. I have become a true fan of David Rhodes and have another of his books, The Easter House, waiting in the wings. Aug 19, Steve rated it it was amazing. I read this after seeing a review of Rhodes' new book Driftless. I've also since read the latter. Rock Island Line follows July Montgomery from his grandparents' life in Iowa to a tumultuous period in the east followed by a return to life outside Iowa City.

July is enigmatic but soulful. You'll love this character. He reappears in Rhodes new book which is set in a small town in Wisconsin. Told more as a series of character vignettes than Rock Island Line, Driftless for the drif I read this after seeing a review of Rhodes' new book Driftless.

Told more as a series of character vignettes than Rock Island Line, Driftless for the driftless region of Wisconsin among other things nonetheless is a coherent story of the intersecting lives of fascinating people. Rhodes has a authentic ear and feel for the rural America - what keeps people tied to the land and its small towns and what makes life there so challenging. I haven't enjoyed a read so much as these two since reading Ahab's Wife a few years ago.

Sep 29, Amy rated it liked it. A good read--a good mix of harsh realities, introspective musings, and a bit of the mystic. I bought this book because I read a great article about the author, David Rhodes. He published three novels while in his 20s, then was paralyzed in a motorcycle accident and never published again until thirty years later, when a small-press publisher got hold of this book, looked him up, and asked him if he'd written anything since. The press Milkweed Editions reissued Rock Island Line and released its A good read--a good mix of harsh realities, introspective musings, and a bit of the mystic.

I enjoyed Rock Island Line and can't wait to compare the two, because the author's voice in this one is definitely that of a young man, and it will be interesting to hear his "mature" voice in Driftless. Sep 14, Bob rated it it was amazing. We are 75 pages into the book before the main character is born in The lives of his parents and grandparents in a very precise setting in southeastern Iowa are described but our protagonist named July by his whimsical mother runs away to Philadelphia at the age of 12 for almost a decade, before returning.

The specificity of place both in Iowa and Philadelphia lends lots of pleasurable detail but doesn't seem intended to reinforce too strongly any city vs country points.

July's life ran We are 75 pages into the book before the main character is born in July's life ranges from almost idyllic to at least interestingly picaresque but it is punctuated by three enormous tragedies which I won't give away. We are left with a carefully drawn complex character scarcely in his mids so there is an open-endedness to the close of the book. Oct 17, Elizabeth rated it really liked it. I have read this book for a class.


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I have to give a book review presentation, a critical book review and then a 15 page critical analysis of the book. So, I really needed to pay close attention as I read. I found this very hard because I kept getting swept up into the characters and plot. I literally had to pull myself out of the world Rhodes created to think objectively and critically about the novel. That being said, I am so glad this class introduced me to David Rhodes.

He is brilliant and us I have read this book for a class. He is brilliant and uses the most beautiful language that makes his characters come to life, like they are right in my living room with me. It only took me two days to read, but it was complex and a page turner. Definitely a good read, go pick it up! Dec 29, David rated it liked it.

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This book could easily have earned four stars but for some missteps in the latter half. I'm definitely up for the recent sequel Driftless , published 30 years after this one. The author was in an accident a few years after publishing Rock Island Line that left him paralyzed from the chest down. Driftless is his first book in all that time. The missteps were mainly in characterization too baldly "bad" characters, and other characters that just didn't convince and plotting a couple of too-han This book could easily have earned four stars but for some missteps in the latter half.

The missteps were mainly in characterization too baldly "bad" characters, and other characters that just didn't convince and plotting a couple of too-handy contrivances that presented us with just the info we'd need at just the right moment. But the strengths are far, far more numerous and rewarding.

Passionate, evocative, thoughtful writing. Mar 30, Alison rated it really liked it Shelves: Along with many others, I too read this after reading Driftless. David Rhodes was in his early twenties when he wrote this, and although I liked Driftless more, I realize that another 30 years of maturity and life's experiences were evident in that book. What incredible depth he conveys about humanity at such a young age! His ability to create characters and make you feel and understand what they are experiencing is such an innate talent.

It took 30 years for Rhodes to write after his accident. I certainly hope we don't have to wait that long again to read his beautiful words or meet more of his memorable characters. May 22, Megan rated it liked it Shelves: Not as good as Rhodes's Jewelweed, this novel has its best parts in the beginning, in the rich and thought-provoking descriptions of the Montgomery family's early life in eastern Iowa.

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Towards the second half of the book, and especially in the climax and ending, a kind of melodramatic tone takes over; and the plot loses some coherence, becoming more a sequence of events than a purposeful structure. Rhodes's description of Philadelphia life is also not as rich as his description of life in the Io Not as good as Rhodes's Jewelweed, this novel has its best parts in the beginning, in the rich and thought-provoking descriptions of the Montgomery family's early life in eastern Iowa. More About the Authors. Eyre Price was born in Syracuse and raised outside of Scranton, but thinks of America's highways as his home.

He's stood at the crossroads where legend says Robert Johnson sold his soul and walked the alley between the Ryman and Hank Williams' favorite honky tonk. Eyre now lives with his son, Dylan, and a collection of rescue pets in a little place not far from the beach in South Carolina's Lowcountry. Get to Know Us. English Choose a language for shopping.

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