Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Self Published Kindling by Mik Everett- review

Self-published Kindling is a memoir of homeless family.  Homeless because their book store supporting indie authors doesn't actually sell any books.  Too proud to pack it up and admit defeat, they continue to run the book store while living in a broken down RV in a walmart parking lot.  Both parents work, and still can't afford a place to live.

Terrifying - all my reading is done with my heart in my throat as these people are like me.  They begin the story with a home, cell phones, laptops, kids, jobs, and a dream that the invest in, and it lets them down.

The story tells of a friendly drug culture, stealing necessity, endless applications and interviews for assistance, and the frustration of all of it.

While there is no spoken self-pity in the book, it reeks of the struggle to survive, in a way that singes the soul...Themes of community, shame, loss, and hope are in abundance throughout the book:  The community they foster with their bookstore, the loss they're surviving, and hope that the system will actually work for them.  The abrupt ending leaves the reader wondering what's next in their journey.

An example:

Four people drive to Fort Lupton to buy an RV for eight
hundred dollars. Two miles out of Fort Lupton, the RV dies at the
top of a hill. The family goes back to the RV's owner and they
say, 'Hey, you sold us a shitty RV. We want our money back.' The
previous owners take a look at the RV, and the engine's choked. A
valve needs replaced. The family gets their money back and
drives back to Longmont. Two days later, they drive to Brighton
to pick up a different RV for a thousand dollars. They make it five
miles out of town when the RV dies, again at the top of a hill. The
family goes back to the dealer and says, 'Hey, you sold us a shitty
RV. We want out money back.' The dealer says no dice, you
bought it, you're stuck with it. The engine, radiator, and batteries
are all toast. The RV needs to be rewired. It will cost hundreds of
And here's the punch line:
A valve costs about fifty dollars.

I kept reading, with a constant anxiety, hoping for some sort of happy ending, which never came.  Incidentally, that's the only thing I found wrong with the book, the way it ended.

This was a powerful book, and I certainly recommend it.

A link to enter a goodreads giveaway his here:
Her Goodreads:
Her blog:
Amazon Author page:

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