I’m thrilled to give five stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ to “Diary of a Shy Backpacker: iii. No Looking Back,” by Bruce Spydar. What a perfect ending to the series!
Find the full Shy Backpacker series here: https://www.amazon.com/Shy-Backpacker-3-book-series/dp/B08L61RZBQ
The Shy Backpacker Travels On and Matures More
In this final book in Bruce Spydar’s Shy Backpacker series, readers will find a perfect celebration of the protagonist’s physical adventure across the planet and his emotional journey inside his heart. Diary of a Shy Backpacker: iii. No Looking Back picks up after main character B.J. leaves New Zealand for Canada (by way of Hawaii). He’s said goodbye to sexy friend Megan, and pines away for his new girlfriend Suzi – a fellow Brit he met in Australia at the beginning of his global trek.
B.J.’s looking forward to seeing Canada, but he’s fast becoming road weary. He’s traveled for three months, and it’s understandable. Even under the best conditions, sometimes you just want to be in your “own” space. But B.J. gamely heads for the Great White North – well, at least the more southern parts of it. He lands in Vancouver (the western end), but his Canadian experience will take him all the way east. Canada is one big country, and the bus trips are long.
Although B.J. meets a new colorful cast of characters in this installment – erotic film stars (ahem), an older woman bent on seducing him, and a sexy fellow traveler who attempts to get him into her bedroom – he also spends a lot of time alone in his head. A certain melancholy shows up in this latest book. We get it. B.J. is tired, and he’s missing Suzi terribly.
This longing grows as each day passes, and only brief phone chats tie him to the “girl back home.” Temptation pops up to test him in all sorts of sultry shapes and lovely forms. What is a horny-but-honest young man to do?
He stays faithful and soothes himself with skin flicks discovered on his private room’s TV, that’s what. (There is a funny scene where B.J. is caught in a rather…revealing moment. That poor maid!)
But giggles aside, B.J.’s internal musings on what he wants, what he’s missing, and what he is supposed to do when he returns home to England show what weighs heavily on him. Thoughts of life in London commuting to an office job fill him with dread. Are we surprised? No! This is the man who just spent three months backpacking around the globe. He seeks beauty in nature and new places. He wants to share these experiences with someone special. He wants to build a good life with someone he loves.
And Suzi is waiting for him to return. Yet for as much as B.J. can’t wait to see her and take their relationship to the next level, he questions his feelings after spending such a short amount of time with her in Australia. And that’s a fair consideration. Was this the case of meeting a true “soul mate”? Or something different? I think readers must decide for themselves. In times of true terror, strangers can form lifelong bonds and care deeply for one another. Couldn’t the opposite be possible? Couldn’t heartfelt connections be made in the happiest of times surrounded by great beauty and wonder? I think so.
But through all of his musings on Suzi and what their relationship might bring, saucy Megan refuses to leave B.J.’s thoughts. Or, perhaps he refuses to let her go. He laments not remembering one night spent with her in New Zealand. Was it only a night of drinking, dancing, and singing? Megan wasn’t very forthcoming the morning after, but she is a tease. Who’s to say what really happened?
B.J.’s frequent return to Megan in his fantasies makes it clear: He might’ve fallen for Suzi, but he’s conflicted. Did I mention that Suzi and Megan are best friends?
Besides the drama of naughty ladies and sexless nights, the reader spends time with a matured main character. B.J.’s intentions have grown from seeking solely physical gratification to a desire for a life partner. He might not have settled his feelings with everything in his future (e.g., career), but he knows he’s ready for a truly meaningful relationship.
I was surprised the reader was allowed to follow B.J. back to England at the end of the book, but it was a great way for the author to bring us all full circle. What awaited B.J. at home? Why, the next chapter in his life.
I think fans of this series will find a satisfying resolution. I know I did. If you are new to the Shy Backpacker – the lovable B.J. himself – start by journeying with him to Australia. Pick up a copy of Diary of a Shy Backpacker: Awakening Down Under (book one in the series). An enjoyable, funny, and sexy literary trip awaits you!