Monday, November 06, 2006

The Passenger - John C. Boland

This story in the December 2006 issue of AHMM was quite heavy on atmosphere and Herb Moss, the point of view character, was very much a human character. His wife, Paula, was very much rounded as well, but less attention was paid to her. The story concerns a married couple trying to work out kinks in their relationship with a wintertime trip in Upstate New York (a time and place where, I can tell you from personal experience, you're more likely to desire death than in any other setting).

Paula seems to be having an affair and her husband seems to be calmly aware of it. I suppose this is one of the kinks. In any event, the real problems occur when they run off the road and have to leave their car stranded. They hitch a ride with a passing trucker and...well, I can't say too much more really.

There is, I think, a possible problem with the logic of the story's climax, but that might just be me...Still, if you're looking for atmosphere (think bleak midwinter or the winter of our discontent) and a fine prose style, then you've come to the right story.

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