Fourteen-year-old Jamie, aka “Punkzilla,” is on a mission: to see his older brother, Peter (“P”), before P dies of cancer. Hopping a bus while still buzzing from his last hit of meth, Jamie embarks on a days-long bus trip from Portland, Oregon, to Memphis, Tennessee, writing letters to his family and friends - letters so honest he may never send them.
Along the way, he sees a sketchier side of America the Beautiful: seedy motels, dicey bus stations, and a colorful, sometimes dangerous cast of characters. In letters he writes to P, he catalogs them all - the freaky but kind transsexual, the old woman with the oozing eye, the girl with the long, wavy blond hair. But with each individual he meets and each interstate exit he passes, Jamie grows more anxious. Will he make it to Tennessee in time?
“Beneath a surface of disease, despair, and disfigurements, Rapp’s road trip is populated with good souls who, despite their circumstances, make significant sacrifices to help Punkzilla.... Devastating stuff, but breathtaking, too.” (Booklist)
“Reads like a contemporary version of On the Road.... Fans will be more than happy to be in Adam Rapp’s company again.” (Kirkus Reviews)
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