Thursday, February 27, 2014

"Last Days of California" by Mary Miller

Jess, the narrator of Ms. Miller's Last Days of California, is 15 and on the road to California to be Raptured along with her parents and 17 year old sister Elise. Their Dad believes, in these end days, that California will be the last place to ascend to Heaven with the rest of their congregation who are caravanning along a different route.
As they travel  from Alabama to the West Coast and stop at motels, gas stations, fast food joints and home style restaurants, Jess questions everything, ponders life's meanings, and  wonders how others perceive her, especially boys. She tries to be a good daughter... helping her believer Dad hand out religious tracts along the way, but sometimes that's not so easy. She admires and envies the ease with which her beautiful sister seems to move through life, even though she is secretly pregnant, Jess being the only one in the family who knows.
This is a wonderful coming of age story as the reader becomes another passenger cruising along, listening to "Heaven" themed mixes on the ipod, and eavesdropping on Jess and Elise's conversations.
If you enjoyed such recent classics of teen girlhood as Jo Ann Beard's In Zanesville and Megan Abbott's The End of Everything then be sure to grab a copy or check it out at your library and enjoy this literary road trip.

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