The Runaway Woman (Josephine Cox)

article-0-1b6c3db800000578-626_233x423Lets see what England’s fourth estate had to say about this potboiler. “Thanks to her near faultless writing, sympathies will lurch from one character to another, and as events reach their dramatic conclusion readers will find it impossible to tear themselves away.” News of the World. (Er, I don’t think so) “Written from the heart” Daily Mail. (Again, no. Written while persuading her publisher to deposit another advance into her bank account more likely)

Why do people in Britain even bother to believe anything in those rags who call themselves newspapers? I cannot believe this is the author’s 50th novel. The style of writing is what you’d expect from an amateur writer who doesn’t fully understand what they’re doing. Every thought that stumbles across the mind of every character is reported verbatim. Everything is described in minute, almost painful detail. Scenes stop in the middle for a couple of paragraphs about what the characters are thinking about each other. There is no room for the reader to imagine or wonder because we’re force-fed everything. Cox assumes her readers are unimaginative fools. The book is so tedious at times it becomes almost unreadable.

The characters are one-dimensional and so bland I didn’t connect with any of them. Lucy is the single dullest character to ever disgrace fiction. We are told repeatedly, for pages and pages how downtrodden and sad and lonely and pathetic Lucy is. The author has a ‘feel sorry for Lucy damn it’ stick that she likes to smash the reader over the head with every half hour or so. The plot was yawn-worthy and predictable. It was like reading the script from an ancient episode of Coronation Street. That’s what must have inspired this. Probably the worst book I’ve ever read and it beggars belief that this author has written 49 other books that people have actually bought and, in some cases, enjoyed. Why? They need their heads examined.

The writing style was terrible; the plot could’ve been interesting but was predictable, boring and ridiculous; and the editing was bad – there were so many sections that were pointless and so much repetition of paragraphs and thoughts, which annoyed me even more as I found it tedious to read the paragraphs and characters’ thoughts the first time. Eventually I came to the conclusion that the characters must all be suffering from amnesia, that they felt the need to repeat themselves in every second paragraph. I wouldn’t recommend The Runaway Woman to anyone and don’t plan to read any more of this author. Then again, if you are on a long train journey and feel like weeping with boredom, this is just the ticket.



  1. Great review, thanks for sharing. I’ll certainly be steering clear of this one!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ha ha. It pays to read reviews…sometimes! 🙂


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