Points Failure (novel)

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Points Failure is an unfinished novel by Krozruch, began in North Wales in around 2011 and finished essentially when he began a course at Manchester's Comma Press. It relates to the belief he had at the time that individuals only ever have a handful of times to express themselves and put themselves on a different track, and any one can be significant, or catastrophic. For the protagonist of this novel, a train driver and a decent young man, a handful of wrong choices and an inability to fully commit to the better alternatives, leads to a scarcely incomprehensibly senseless small town murder. The novel came on the heels of The Thaw and was to precede Complicity.

From Radical Transparency

(Points Failure is on an old Mac and the character's names are substituted for square brackets here.)

"[] drives trains in a one-size-fits-all town in the midlands. It has its challenges and its frustrations but it is as close to a dream job as he could imagine for himself. His younger sister, [], has been having a rough time for a few years. She lacks confidence, in a way she didn't for a long time growing up. He has been close to her, tends to be protective of her, but now she seems distant and withdrawn at times. Leaving a club early one night to drive her around, he finds himself more irritated than he tends to be with her and demands of her what has happened to make her so scared of everything, so cowed by life. How is it that she never passed her driving test? How come she is stuck in the same job she hates? She mutters something about the driving tutor they both had. He used to touch her in a way she didn't like. And then she clams up. She never mentions it again and gets upset when he brings it up.

In the next few months [] clocks up a handful of SPDs, signals passed at danger. The infrastructure in the area is not idea and he had been one of the few with a clean record, but his manager notices something is wrong with him and tries to take him under his wing as his favoured member of staff. He tells him he can see something's on his mind, tells him to take some of accrued holiday and get away somewhere.

In North Wales with an old friend, [] discovers climbing and the outdoors. He enjoys it. He returns a couple of times and gets closer to a girl out there, []. He visits a few times in his days off in the next few months.

Back home, though, things don't get better too quickly. He is finding that Wales clears his head, but he leaves it behind him. One day on his way home, he crashes his car at speed near Bridgenorth. And then, this whole [] thing isn't going away. Too often, he finds himself driving up to his house and looking in.

Is [] and the new life he has found just a couple of hours away in North Wales enough to pull him back from a dangerous obsession?"