A review of
Miles From Nowhere
by Nami Mun
The cast of Nami Mun’s first novel is mostly tough-talking, drug-shooting, street-hustling teenage runaways in the 1980s Bronx. But you will find no doomed glamour or punk sound track here—just vulnerable, lost children, any of whom would love to go home, if there was a home that wanted them back. It’s entirely fitting, then, that the cover shows a miniature image of the square, low Bronx skyline at dusk, the buildings huddled under a vast, icy blue sky, with the tiny orange windows of tower blocks hinting at the presence of warmth inside.
Joon and Knowledge, the narrator and her best friend, are getting ready to “bust out” of an unlocked shelter as the story begins. “Over the speakers, dinner was being announced.” The promise Joon had made—to back up her best friend, no matter what—trumps the promise of a hot dinner. The shelter staff barely bats an eye at their escape, wearily reminding them that if they leave, they won’t be allowed back in out of the freezing December night.
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