Publisher: Hello America
Released: November 1, 2016
Rachel Bell's new book is a story of sex and recovery, drugs and hospitalization. In this slim but densely-packed volume we meet Marina and follow her as the story jumps back and forth through time—a broken marriage to adolescence and beyond.
The story begins with a crosscountry trip fleeing a cheating, violent husband. Bell gives us brief but evocative views of America as Marina navigates it: "When she stepped out of her car in Albuquerque she took a deep breath, her hands shaking from 120 milligrams of amphetamine salts, and thought, 'Fuck Albuquerque,' as she stared into the sky which was now showing her stars that she had never seen. She promised the new stars that she would give a name to each of them."
At its core Loving the Ocean Won't Keep it from Killing You is a survivor's story--it's about surviving rape, an abusive marriage, a Serbian sexual predator, and a sea of awful hook-ups. It's a book set in classrooms and in-patient recovery rooms, methy trailerparks and lonely highways. It's an American story--modern, unflinching, filled with a universe of human details (told beautifully) that make up a life. Graphically sexual and hilariously frank, this book is somber, wild, true, and terrifying.