An unexpected love story with a wild road trip to boot.
Type A Hannah and bipolar Zoe have been inseparable friends since they were 10. Hannah is known around their New Jersey lakeside town as “the hot dog girl” since her alcoholic weatherman father refuses to pay for college, forcing her to earn money “selling meat in the shape of a phallus to predatory commuters on the way to the city”—she’s accustomed to putting her own needs last. But all of that is about to change. In episodic chapters characterized by frank dialogue and Hannah’s biting wit, Zoe’s depression turns to mania, and faithful Hannah rides across the country with free-spirited Zoe as she chases the weather. While Hannah helps Zoe work through the episode, Zoe gives Hannah “intangible lessons” in insouciance, audacity, betrayal, destiny, luck, and how to live and feel. And while Hannah starts to try out these new feelings on longtime crush Danny, the real love here is between Hannah and Zoe. In a finely crafted blend of heartbreak and humor, Hannah begins to see the reality of Zoe’s disorder. A touch of magical realism throughout leaves the bittersweet ending open to interpretation and allows readers to overlook a few improbabilities.
Fans of the author’s The Probability of Miracles (2011) will discover more of life’s possibilities and wonder. (Fiction. 14-18)