Strong at the Broken Places
Strong At The Broken Places follows ultra runner, Nick Fister, as he runs the Badwater 135 Ultramarathon. As if running the ultimate ultra-race wasn’t enough, Nick’s daughter committed suicide only a few days before the race, and his crew chief was murdered the morning of. Nick must face insurmountable personal and physical odds while running the last race of his life.
I’ve been trying to get my thoughts together about Strong At The Broken Places for a couple of days. This is one of those books that’s going to stick with me for a while. The title is an allusion to the concept of bones being stronger where they’ve knitted together after a break. But what if the break is emotional? Why do some people become stronger when they face personal adversity while others break down?
Nick Fister is not a sympathetic character. The reader is given flashes of his youth and upbringing, including what drives him to run, throughout the book. A victim of physical and emotional abuse, he should be a sympathetic character but, as an adult, he comes across as self-centered and neglectful — sacrificing everything for the sport. Normally, this type of jumping back and forth between the past and present would annoy me, but Clayton Lindemuth does it skillfully so that it seems as if it’s the natural, random thought processes of a man with nothing better to do during a grueling race than to wonder what brought him to that point in his life.
There’s really no sense of completion at the end of Strong At The Broken Places. While the book ends, the reader is left with the knowledge that the story goes on. This is both oddly satisfying and extremely infuriating.
Strong At The Broken Places is a well-written novel that will not necessarily keep readers on the edge of their seats, but definitely keep them engrossed in the story until the very end.
|Page Count||267 pages|
|Amazon||Buy this Book|