Jess is an overweight 14-year-old girl stuck in the car with her religious fanatic parents and her pregnant, anorexic sister. The family is driving 2,500 miles to California so they can be among the last people to witness the Rapture.
The premise seems tailor-made for this reviewer (in terms of interest, and also the fact that I was once a 14-year-old girl, trapped in the car with my family for what seemed like eternity) but I challenge anyone to read Mary Miller's The Last Days of California and not find some personal resonance in the backseat of that apocalypse-bound wagon. That's because underneath Miller's road trip novel is the age-old story we all lived through: the one where you discover your parents are human. Or, in Jess's case, that they're weak, sometimes pathetic, and probably not happy.
Jess — the serious kid, the good kid, the kid who doesn't get jokes —...
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No Man's Land
by Simon Tolkien
Inspired by the experiences of his grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, during World War I.
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