In a nutshell, this is a novel about a town in the desert called Night Vale. If I lived there I’d call it Nightmare. It’s inhabitants are ghosts, angels, aliens, some really weird people, and semi normal people who don’t understand what’s going on with them.

Pawn shop owner, Jackie Fierro has been age 19 for a long time maybe a hundred years. She’s doesn’t remember.

Diane Crayton, a single mom, works at an office but she isn’t sure what she does there. She’s also the treasurer of the PTA. Her 15 year-old son, Josh, is a shape changer. Sometimes he’s a dragon, or an insect, or a monster, or some kind of mist, but he rarely takes the shape of a teenager.

Diane and Jackie team up to find King City after a man in a tan suit pawns a piece of paper with the name of the city written on it and the paper stays in Jackie’s hand. No matter how hard she tries she can’t get the paper to leave her hand.

When Josh finds out that his father might live in King City he takes off leaving Diane to try to find him. So Jackie and Diane face killer librarians and roads that lead to King City but somehow end up back in Night Vale to try to find the man who pawned the piece of paper to Jackie and to find Josh.

I’m not sure how I feel about this very strange book. At first it was different and mildly funny but eventually I found myself pushing my way through it. It was a struggle at times. I forced myself to keep going and then after reading 200 pages of the 400 page novel it became a little more interesting or maybe I just got used to the weirdness factor.

There’s a wildly popular podcast about Night Vale that I never listened to and most likely won’t.

Welcome to Night Vale” by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor is not bad just a little unsettling at times and it really does remind me of living in a nightmare.  I’d probably read another novel about this desert town if I run across it but I doubt if I’ll be going out of my looking for it.


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