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Teen angst

Coming of age on the road to rapture

in Fiction by

It’s hard to convince a thirty-something woman to willingly revisit the teenage experience, even another girl’s story and especially with the added complexity of today’s technology. A thirty-something woman knows too well what awaits her in those pages—self-doubt, self-wonder, and lack of foresight to start; the fine balance between limitless possibility and assured impossibility; the question of sexual attractiveness; smart phones. (Thank goodness those weren’t an option in 1996.) But despite whatever implications a coming-of-age story might suggest, veteran short story writer Mary Miller has managed to portray hers in a way that is pleasantly prickly and not at all expected, in this thirty-something’s opinion. In her debut novel, The Last Days of California (Norton/Liveright, January), Miller delivers a succinct, page-turning…

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