Jessanne Collins is an editor at mental_floss magazine and the co-proprietor of Finite + Flammable. Her essays have also appeared on Salon, The Awl, and The Millions.
When you’re 16 and searching, Jack Kerouac’s urge to hit the road can seem inspired, or at least inspiring. Later, you wonder if his literature was actually early-onset LiveJournal. Later still, On the Road deserves one more look.
From the awkward phase through the sweater phase to the riot grrrl phase and the New York phase, growing up with a First Daughter I’ve never met.
When floating through post-collegiate limbo, you can use an anchor. Recalling when a very large book played a very large role in life.