Girls in Trucks
Not many books have been able to capture the social chasm between northern and southern women quite as well as Katie Crouch’s new novel, Girls in Trucks, has. Meet Sarah Walters, a southern debutante born and raised in South Carolina. Upon entering college, Sarah flees north, separating herself from all that she has ever known. Sarah soon discovers how different people, men in particular, in the north are; they are harder, flightier, and often times quick to forget about another person. Thus begins Sarah Walter’s descent into self-discovery. Leaving behind a life of luxury, etiquette, and old money, Sarah sets out to forge her own path.
Sarah is in every way the self-proclaimed independent woman. She is educated, single, and career-oriented. The only glitch in her character, however, is that she constantly allows herself to play the victim. From the time the reader meets her as a teenager to thirty-one-year-old Sarah, she constantly seeks out men who seem to destroy her spirit.
She meets the apathetic Brett in college and immediately beds down with him. She is later confused as to why he leaves her so quickly and decides the best way to heal her broken heart is through other boys and mixed-drinks. Max is introduced into her life when Sarah is in her early twenties. They have a rather turbulent relationship, and Sarah allows herself to become a sexual deviant for Max’s own sick and twisted fantasies. Even toward the end of the book when she is a mother, Sarah does not settle for something safe. She does not settle for a good man. Instead, she compares herself to a heroin junkie, always looking for the next fix; her drug is love, and it is that same thing that has dictated her mess of a life.
Crouch does a wonderful job creating a protagonist the reader can both root for and mother. Sarah stumbles her way through life, sometimes naively and blindly following her heart. Yet deep inside she is a strong, logical woman, quite capable of being her own knight in shining armor.
In it’s entirety, _Girls in Trucks _is a thoroughly endearing novel with deliciously rich characters. The course Sarah’s life runs keeps the reader both attentive and empathetic to both her and her loved ones. The novel is ultimately a love story—not between a man and a woman, but with one’s self.