Love’s Long Road
by G. D. Harper
Glasgow, 1975. How do you cope when your boyfriend kills himself because of you?
When Bobbie Sinclair’s boyfriend commits suicide and blames her, she vows never to love again. Instead she chooses to lead a double existence, kind-hearted by day and promiscuous by night. She increasingly struggles to maintain the balance between light and dark and soon finds herself sucked into the world of a controlling and ruthless crime lord from which she must escape.
Set against a vibrant but seedy 1970s Glasgow backdrop, Love’s Long Road plots Bobbie’s desperate plight. Starting a new life but constantly afraid of her past catching up with her, she battles danger, adversity and drug addiction on the long and perilous road back to love.
Love’s Long Road is about dealing with the guilt of terrible events in your past and the risk of being corrupted by the world around you; it is a story that captures to perfection what it was like to be young and single in the 1970s.
“I was high on my audacity. I was shocked by my behavior, but boy did it feel good.”
“Sally lived in her little peace-and-love fantasy land, where the Beatles had never split up and Jim Morrison was still living incognito in Paris.”
“Two perfect Barbie Dolls, sharing a brain cell between them, gossiping away in breathy baby tones like a pair of cockney Marylyn Munroes.”
“Big Jockie is always talking to Michael about ‘smurfs’ and I don’t think he’s the sort of guy who spends his time reading obscure Belgian comics.”
“Mr. Jenkins, a weedy accountant who comes around to do the books. Nervous bloke, fiddles with his glasses a lot, had a charisma bypass as a child.”
“I had so many skeletons in my closet I could run my own ghost train.”
“I looked up into the public gallery. Maybe some of them were there out of ghoulish fascination… It was like finding out who would turn up at your funeral.”
A new author emailed me about reading her book… I read the description and was a bit hesitant – but as I am all about helping indie authors – I signed on – but not without some trepidation. This book was so much more than the synopsis – it blew me away. One of the major reasons I was lured in to read was the stated era – as I came of age in that unique period of time known as the 70s. Reading this story was a trip in the nostalgic cultural time machine for me – I recalled with more than a few grins and grimaces that time in my life before cell phones, the internet, computers, and caller ID. The sexual revolution had exploded with the wider availability of “the pill” – yet most women (young and/or mature) were still so naïve about sex. We used words like groovy, grotty, and cool in every conversation; wore widely flared bell bottoms, satin shirts, and maxi skirts; parents were “squares;” eight track tapes, discos, and Donna Summer were “far out;” police were the “fuzz;” and young women took their gospel from Cosmo. The story brought all that back – and even made it feel tangible.
The main character of this story, Bobbie, was a rather naïve young woman of the time, but in her prime and ready for adventure. However, her psyche was irrevocably scarred by the death by suicide of her boyfriend of two years – a death that occurred shortly after she had dissolved their relationship. Devastated with guilt, she determines her course to avoid any future entanglements of love/relationships/feelings by keeping emotions in check and limiting her sexual excursions to the one-night variety to avoid future heartache. This, of course, is idealistic and sets off a period of promiscuous, reckless, and youthful impetuousness. Bobbie inevitably makes a series of bad choices and learns the hard way that she has “a tendency to get sucked into morally dubious lifestyles.”
G.D. Harper turned out a masterful story of considerable substance, pathos, and insightful and observant craftiness. The writing was smart, captivating, and emotive. Even when I was frustrated with Bobbie, she still managed to squeeze my heart. Parts of the book had me smiling, parts had me cringing, and other parts had me gasping and grabbing for a cool drink. The tale is as adventuresome as the character, highly active, full of drama and intrigue, and with hits of humor and sensuality. I was an instant fan.