With The Last Days of California, Mary Miller bursts into the literary world, taking up the mantle of Southern fiction and rendering it her own with wry vulnerability and contemporary urgency. Miller’s revelatory protagonist, Jess, is fourteen years old and waiting for the world to end. Her evangelical father has packed up the family and left their Montgomery home to drive west to California, hoping to save as many souls as possible before the Second Coming.
"Sealed Jar of Southern Jelly with Big Shiny Spoon"
The characters in Mary Miller's debut short story collection,Big World, are at once autonomous and lonesome, possessing both a longing to connect with those around them and a cynicism. Her writing is unapologetically honest and efficient, and the gut-wrenching directness of her prose is reminiscent of Mary Gaitskill and Courtney Eldridge - if Gaitskill's and Eldridge's stories were set in the South and reeked of spilled beer and cigarette smoke.