I got this book as a Christmas gift from a friend, and I really enjoyed it. After reading a string of non-fiction books that I slogged through at a snail’s pace and couldn’t bring myself to even review here, I had been craving one of those quick reads that is imminently consumable. This delivered.
The main character is a science teacher and recovering alcoholic spending his summer break on a pilgrimage to Yellowstone National Park in his RV, a trip that he and his teenage son had planned for ages. Tragically, we quickly learn that his son was recently killed in a car accident that is tenuously linked to the ex-wife possibly having had too much to drink. The marriage has ended, spurring the father (August) to begin AA meetings and a long process of mourning. His regular attendance at AA meetings and the road trip are the two things keeping him going. Unfortunately, early in the trip his RV breaks down, with the cost of repairs putting his ability to afford the whole journey in jeopardy. The guy working on his rig makes him a strange offer– take my two kids on the trip with you, and I’ll repair your rig for free. I wasn’t sure I was buying the plausibility factor when I read the plot summary, but from page one, these characters and this story had me under their spell.
Maybe I was just looking for a feel-good story of resilience mixed in with some familiar National Park scenery mixed in, but my friend was right: I loved this!