Updated: Nov 19, 2018
I can't fly anywhere without a book. Generally speaking, I buy a book at the airport, read it on the plane, then give it away when I reach my destination for another soul to enjoy.
Dave Eggers' Heroes of the Frontier made me glad I had a layover in Atlanta. The story chronicles a newly-divorced woman who has run off to Alaska with her two children, a sensitive young son and an unruly toddler daughter. Her life is in utter shambles and she spontaneously just decides to start over.
What follows is some of the best character writing I've ever seen. Rarely do I read a book and feel ENVIOUS of the author, but Eggers makes me feel like a plain Jane practicing with the head cheerleader. His characters are so flawed, so idiosyncratic and fleshed out, that they feel more real than ink should allot. I won't go into too much detail about the actual plot, but I can't recommend this book enough. After so much commercial fiction...Eggers is like the ginger that cleanses your palate between rounds of sushi.