Jackie's Reviews > Destroy All Cars

Destroy All Cars by Blake Nelson
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's review
Mar 21, 2010

really liked it

Yes, this is the story of ranting teen James Hoff and his complete hatred of cars and all things car. However, it's also the story of a young man coming to terms with first love, his place in the universe, and seeing (Holden Caulfieldish) the phoniness of modern American. At the end of the book, in his essay, "Thoughts of Assholism," James states,

"We are taught the greatness of the Dalai Lama, Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King. But who do we really stand in awe of? Not those people. We prefer winners, conquerors, the rich, the famous. We love athletes who crush their opponents. We like companies who strangle their competition. When our politicians steal elections, we stand in awe, unable to act, we're so mesmerized by this extreme and fascinating assholity. We respect people with cojones to screw other people over. We love the victorious. We don't care how they did it. The more ruthless the better.(212)"

I often wonder myself why we don't admit this to young people because, like James, I think many see this. Makes you wonder.

It's a short book full of normal teen angst, but it's nice to see Blake Nelson give us a protagonist who also has a brain and thinks about things bigger than himself.
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