Book Review: Going in Circles by Pamela Ribon

ribonGoing in Circles

Pamela Ribon

336 pages

Published in 2010 by Downtown Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster

Source: Public Library but you can bet your sweet ass that I’m buying a copy

Two weeks ago, I was trolling around Oprah’s website (I have no idea why) when I came across Pamela Ribon’s essay, “How Roller Derby Can Save Your Life”.

I didn’t join a roller derby league in order to survive my divorce. Looking back, I don’t know how I ever thought one had nothing to do with the other.

After reading those first lines, I had to keep reading. In the essay, Ribons talks about roller derby and how the contact sport got her focusing on other things besides the problems she was going through. When she described her latest novel, Going in Circles as “Eat, Pray, Shove”, I knew I needed to read it since I’ve always wanted to grab a pair of skates and learn how to play roller derby.

In Going in Circles, Charlotte Goodman has just left her husband of several months. Hurt and still in disbelief, she tries to distance herself from the pain but it isn’t working. Everyone around Charlotte is asking her to make a decision. Is her going to stay with Matthew or divorce him? As time goes by, Charlotte still hasn’t made a decision and the people in her life are getting tired of her self-pity. When her coworker Francesca introduces Charlotte to roller derby, there’s finally an outlet for her to get out of her own head. Will she ever make the decision to stay in her marriage or finally become single again?

Going in Circles lived up to my expectations and surpassed them. Charlotte’s reaction to everything that’s going on around her is realistic and often hilarious. She’s scared, confused, and forced to wear a mouth guard because she’s been grinding her teeth so badly because of all the stress. She has to see a psychologist and is trying to be distraught enough for her health insurance to pay for therapy but not so much where she ends up institutionalized.

When Charlotte is introduced to roller derby, I started turning the pages even faster. The author explains the sport in detail but it’s never boring or drags down the story.  I love how Charlotte eventually finds herself through the sport.

This book is chick lit at its best. I found Going in Circles to be a perfect weekend read. I can’t wait to read Ribon’s previous books. My rating: 5 out of 5.

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14 thoughts on “Book Review: Going in Circles by Pamela Ribon

  1. Eat Pray Shove! Say no more, lol. That is fantastic!

    Oh rats, my library doesn’t have it! I’ll have to keep my eyes open :)

  2. Do you know that we have a Roller Derby team here in Orlando? I didn’t know that until very recently. This sounds like escapist literature at it’s best, and I am betting that it would make for a great summer read. Thanks for the glowing review and for putting this book on my radar!

    • H, there’s a team out here in Long Beach and another one in L.A. I think I need to start going to the games. This is a great summer read. Glad to put this one on your radar. ;-)

  3. Catchy essay title: How Roller Derby Can Save Your Life. Love it! She sounds cool to me. Remember the movie Rollerball from 1975? James Caan! A classic no doubt.

  4. This sounds like a really fun read. I actually used to watch roller derby every Saturday morning when I was in elementary school and fancied myself a roller derby girl in training!

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