BOOKS > DRIVING WITH DEAD PEOPLE
Throughout Driving with Dead People, a remarkable memoir of Monica Holloway’s dysfunctional, eccentric, and wholly unforgettable family, her prose shines with humor, clear-eyed grace, and an uncommon sense of resilience. Driving with Dead People is an extraordinary tale with a wonderfully observant and resourceful heroine—a story all the more astonishing for being true.
Small wonder that, at nine years old, Monica Holloway develops a fascination with the local funeral home. With a father who drives his Ford pickup with a Kodak movie camera sitting shotgun just in case he sees an accident, and whose home movies feature more footage of disasters than of his children, Monica is primed to become a morbid child.
Yet in spite of her father’s bouts of violence and abuse, her mother’s selfishness and prim denial, and her siblings’ personal battles and betrayals, Monica never succumbs to despair. Instead, she forges her own way, thriving at school and becoming fast friends with Julie Kilner, whose father is the town mortician.
She and Julie preferred the casket showroom to the parks and grassy backyards in her hometown of Elk Grove, Ohio, where they would take turns lying in their favorite coffins. In time, Monica and Julie get a job driving the company hearse to pick up bodies at the airport, yet even Monica’s growing independence can’t protect her from her parents’ irresponsibility, and from the feeling that she simply does not deserve to be safe. Little does she know, as she finally strikes out on her own, that her parents’ biggest betrayal has yet to be revealed.
TITLE: Driving with Dead People
AUTHOR: Monica Holloway
PUBLISHER: Simon Spotlight Entertainment; 1ST edition (March 6, 2007)
ON SALE: Available now
PRICE: $15.00, paperback