"We often learn more from what did not go as planned than from what did."

Klein brings his reader on an autobiographical journey. As a young boomer growing up on Chicago's outskirts, he selects intriguing details to portray his industrious boyhood. He grows corn, chases trains, delivers papers, and attends Maryknoll Seminary in Chesterfield, Missouri. Questioning his Catholic upbringing, Klein moves home, finishes high school, works, takes classes, and, eventually, starts college at the University of Illinois' Circle College.

Narrowly missing Vietnam's draft, Klein guides his readership through his multiple jobs: grocer, hospital employee, candy factory worker, and lab assistant, ultimately obtaining a Ph.D. in epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University. From there, Klein presents his journey through his graduate program, post-docs, and professorships across the continental U.S. Over time, his wanderlust takes him on a VW tour through Mexico, on a cargo barge along the Amazon, and an adventure to Costa Rica and Nicaragua during the Reagan years. His experiences, in turn, pave the way for his career as a researcher, professor, fiction writer, and memoirist.

Written chronologically, each chapter is titled by Klein's life events. Each segment integrates reflections and narrative structure to showcase Klein's time in different cities. Using such strategies, Klein successfully provides a genuine representation of place, reflecting each location's historical and cultural significance during his time there. Although Klein uses episodic memory and detail to illustrate each destination, he demonstrates a cursory view of his relationships, especially regarding the long-term ones in his life. Although the story of Klein's life in Houston is short, this autobiographical bildungsroman is an authentic story of study and travel. In sum, this narrative offers a realistic portrayal of connections lost and found.

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