No Parking at the End Times, by Bryan Bliss

NOTE: This is the same review I posted on Goodreads.com.

noparkingWhen I like a book, I try to post reviews on Amazon, Goodreads, and my own site. Sometimes it’s hard to think of three ways to say the same thing. So here’s what I think:

I stayed up to finish reading No Parking at the End Times  in one sitting. Abigail is learning to deal with living in a van after her parents are duped into selling their house and following “Brother John,” who predicts the end of the world. When it doesn’t happen, Abigail’s parents still believe, and continue to give what little they have to the charlatan pastor. She must decide to run away with her twin brother or try to keep her family intact.

What’s really great about this novel is that Bliss does a wonderful job with character motivation. The reader might be tempted to say, “Well, yeah, her parents are crazy, she’s got to go,” but Bliss writes so elegantly that you can understand her motivation for staying. Not only that, but the parents are not cutout villains. You can even understand their motivation for following some crazy “World is Ending” pastor.

Though Abigail begins to question her faith in God, this book handles religion with care. It’s not snarky, like some books can be, when discussing the topic with teenagers. Abigail does have the opportunity to examine faith through a critical lens – does God really want them to be suffering and homeless? Should they really put their faith (and resources) into one religious leader? Bliss leaves room for complexity in tackling these questions.

Overall, a great read, and like I said, I was unable to put it down.

Buy No Parking at the End Times:

Signed copy. I'm kind of a big deal.

Signed copy. I’m kind of a big deal.

Follow Bryan:

Website | @brainbliss

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Josh Hammond writes things. He has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Hamline University.

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