Staff Review: "Welcome to Night Vale"
Nineteen-year-old Jackie Fierro, owner of the pawn shop in Night Vale, has remained nineteen-years-old for more years than she can remember and has grown accustomed to her unvarying routine. Then a man wearing a tan jacket and carrying a briefcase comes into her shop and gives her a piece of paper with the words, “KING CITY” on it. In that instant, her routine is forever altered. She can’t remember much about him except for his jacket, the briefcase, and a name that begins with the letter “E.” She cannot forget the words “King City,” however. No matter what she does to the paper, it returns to her hand. Diane Crayton, a single mom of a fifteen-year-old shapeshifting son, has her own challenges with a man at her workplace named Ethan. He suddenly vanishes from work, but no one else seems to remember that he ever worked there. Around the same time, she starts seeing her long-lost ex Troy everywhere she goes, and worries about her son’s persistent inquiries regarding his absentee dad. The citizenry of Night Vale understand that their town in the desert southwest is rather strange, but Jackie and Diane each sense something unusual even for Night Vale is going on and doggedly search for answers. This book has a Twilight Zone vibe with a sly sense of humor thrown in, which makes for an unconventional and entertaining read. It is unapologetically strange, which is not a bad thing if you’re willing to go along for an off-kilter ride. I would like to reassure any readers of the book that unlike the librarians in Night Vale, who are vicious monsters, the staff at MCPL are human and happy to help you. Fans of the podcast by the same name will feel right at home, but knowledge of the podcasts is not required. The audiobook is excellent.