Top critical review
Starts well but then I had to force myself to continue
Reviewed in the United States on October 17, 2020
This is a novel about two struggling individuals crossing paths. The first and main character, Jess, is a single mother of two children and owns one oversized gassy dog struggling to make it on a cleaning woman's salary. In fact, she is in debt and can't pay for the basics. The other is Ed, a wealthy man working in the finance industry who inadvertently gives a tip to a lover and is being investigated for providing insider information. By circumstance he ends up on a long road trip (several days) to get Jess's math-whiz daughter to a contest that could mean her getting into a great private school. I began by admiring Jess and sympathizing with her efforts. She is hesitant at first to accept help from a stranger, but then her entire family, gross dog and all, become the passengers from hell assaulting Ed's senses. The dog farts make Ed gag, Jess plants bare feet on his dashboard, and one child plays loud games. The math whiz will get sick at speeds over 40 mph.
The party encounters one preposterous disaster after another, and getting to the contest in time looks iffy. Incredibly, Ed and Jess develop a romantic interest. Jess's character traits were all over the place and my admiration for her waned. Some readers evidently found all of this funny, but about halfway through the only way I could continue to read was to squelch my interest about Jess's family's fate and whether this journey would end well or not.