Turn Left on Green
By Clyde Bolton
In his seventh novel, veteran sportswriter Clyde Bolton takes a stab
at combining stock car racing with a traditional love story.
Although not a future classic novel, Turn Left meets its goal by
providing an entertaining, uncomplicated plot centered around the
wonderful world of NASCAR.
The basis for Boltonís book is quite simple. It is a love story
based on a rekindled relationship from several years ago. The two
main characters include a former dirt track racer whoís made it big
in the Winston Cup Series, and a college-aged woman who is now
assigned to cover the NASCAR beat. The story also throws in an
overpowering unethical team owner, a zealous rookie driver and an
old-timer crew chief. Although a plot with fictional characters, the
book stitches in references to real NASCAR people.
My only beef with the book is relative to its length. At 197 pages,
I was able to digest the entire story in about 3 hours on an
airplane flight. I thought the book could have been a bit longer,
which would have allowed more time to develop the characters and
their relationships. Specifically, it seemed unrealistic that the
woman in this story was seemingly instantaneously able to redevelop
her love for the racecar driver after a seven-year period of not
even knowing what became of him.
Length aside, I found the book to be entertaining and an enjoyable
light read. I praise the author for not trying to turn this into an
overblown love story as found in The Titanic. As this novel is
naturally tailored to the race fan, there is plenty of action both
on and around the track, with several tracks on the NASCAR circuit
represented. With all of Boltonís experience covering NASCAR, his
descriptions of the tracks, the cars and the racing is superbly
detailed and accurate.
I would recommend this book to any racing fan, or even a non-racing
fan for that matter. Just keep in mind that this is not a novel that
will be required reading in future classrooms, nor is it a juicy
tabloid romance. If youíre in the mood for a light story that
involves stock car racing and a decent storyline, this is the book
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