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Solace of the Road by Siobhan Dowd

Solace of the Road

by Siobhan Dowd

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An interesting story of a young girl fostered by a family, and unable to accept it. She decides to go look for her real mother, and takes to the road. She adopts the name Solace, and travels to Ireland, but at the end, makes a last minute decision, that will change everything. ( )
  BookieWorm | Feb 8, 2016 |
I liked this book, but agree with one reviewer that it was hard to like the character of Holly. She was very selfish. It ended a bit differently than I expected, I kept thinking she'd find her mom but that she wouldn't want anything to do with her or they'd even start another life together. Liked all the different slang that UK kids use compared to Americans. Sad to hear this author died so soon, she was very good and will be visiting more of her work! ( )
  briannad84 | Dec 13, 2013 |
I was really looking forward to this book. I really liked the premise and I thought it would be something I could enjoy. I wasn't that impressed with it, though. I just couldn't bring myself to like Holly which made it hard to like the book in general. She really didn't come across as a nice person and I found it hard to sympathize with her. I could understand somewhat her reasons for the thoughts she had but it didn't make me find her interesting. Some parts of the book did make me a laugh a bit but overall it was pretty underwhelming. It was easy to read though and did keep me interested enough to read on to the end so it wasn't all bad. ( )
  nicola26 | Mar 30, 2013 |
I had a hard time getting into this books, while I could feel for Holly I couldn't get over the constant feeling of danger her roadtrip brought me. I was entirely to scared for her the entire time to enjoy reading her story. Young girls roaming around the UK with no money and no sense - eek! ( )
  francescadefreitas | Apr 15, 2011 |
"Solace of the Road" by Siobhan Dowd was a very enticing read. This story is about a 15-year-old girl on the run and her struggles through life. The story begins with a problem the main character faces and the rest of the book goes on to tell about the events that led her to it. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book because the author gave you a hint as to what was going to happen in the future. Each chapter revealed a little information each time, exposing the truths behind the character's past. This kept my attention and made me want to keep reading to find out the secrets. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys suspensful adventures. ( )
  ahsreads | Feb 17, 2011 |
Showing 1-5 of 12 (next | show all)
Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, September 1, 2009 (Vol. 77, No. 17))
Holly, a 15-year-old ward of the state, is placed with foster parents who, though they try very hard, can't break through the barrier she has constructed around herself, mostly to forget her early life with her uninterested mother. After she discovers a blond wig that seems to add years to her age, Holly hits the road, bravely reinventing herself as Solace, a young woman with an attitude. Her destination, across England and Wales, is Ireland, where her mother must surely be. Experiences along the way help her rediscover lost memories. Holly's character is fully developed and bright with a quirky humor. Holly's insights and observations are completely plausible, as is her voyage of discovery, described in lovely, pitch-perfect language. A last gift from Dowd.
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If I was where I would be,
Then I would be where I am not.
Here I am where I must be,
Where I would be, I cannot.

from 'Katie Cruel', a traditional song
For Anna
First words
I breezed down the line of cars, so cool you'd never have known I was looking for a way to board the boat.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Memories of Mum are the only thing that make Holly Hogan happy. She hates her foster family with their too-nice ways and their false sympathy. And she hates her life, her stupid school and the way everyone is always on at her. Then she finds the wig, and everything changes. Wearing the long, flowing blonde locks she feels transformed. She's not Holly any more, she's Solace: the girl with the slinkster walk and the super-sharp talk. She's older, more confident - the kind of girl who can walk right out of her humdrum life, hitch to Ireland and find her mum. The kind of girl who can face the world head on.

So begins a bittersweet, and sometimes hilarious journey as Solace swaggers and Holly tiptoes across England and through memory, discovering her true self, and unlocking the secrets of her past.

SOLACE OF THE ROAD is a wonderful novel from one of the UK's most talented new writers for teenagers. Holly's story will leave a lasting impression on all who travel with her. (Random House website)
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While running away from a London foster home just before her fifteenth birthday, Holly has ample time to consider her years of residential care and her early life with her Irish mother, whom she is now trying to reach.

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