After her dad drags her 1000 miles away from her home in Cleveland, Ohio, Mim Malone is frustrated that her mom was seemingly abandoned. She leaves Mississippi (Mosquitoland), her dad, and stepmom, Kathy, to find her mom in Ohio who stops contacting her. Mim believes Kathy is trying to keep her away from her mom. So later, she takes her stepmother’s money to start this journey and gets on a greyhound bus. The story is told partly through letters written during the road trip to her aunt Isabel and partly real time.
Mim meets a motley of characters along the way and has an authentic voice. She is witty, deep, and thoughtful. It’s unfortunate that she has to go through so much trouble to find out the truth about her mother. Beck, a photographer she meets on the greyhound bus, is similar to her, almost like her other half. The light in the book is Walt. He’s innocent and childish but goes through everything with a smile.
The characters are quirky and easy to get attached to. Past and present are woven together well to bring unity to the story. Mim’s physical journey is as captivating as her emotional one is touching. The ending was surprising and gave closure
Mim stubbornly clings to her assumptions but eventually, confronts them and grows a bit with each confrontation. There’s heavy sarcasm and the language may bother some people. It also discusses sensitive issues like mental illness. Mim herself getting an unclear psychiatric diagnosis. Despite this, it’s still funny and will leave you with a feeling of wanderlust.