St. Christopher on Pluto by Nancy McKinley
Featured on The Thread: 'St. Christopher On Pluto' follows the adventures of 2 friends in an old Buick
MK and Colleen get reacquainted while working at different stores in a bankrupt mall. Way back, the women went to Catholic school together and collaborated on racy letters to a soldier in Vietnam who thought they were much older than seventh graders—a ruse that typifies later shenanigans, usually brought on by red-headed Colleen, a self-proclaimed “Celtic warrior.”
After ditching Colleen’s car to collect the insurance, they drive from one unexpected event to the next in Big Blue, MK’s Buick clunker with a St. Christopher statue glued to the dash. The glow-in-the-dark icon guides them past the farm debris, mine ruins, and fracking waste of the northern brow of Appalachia. Yet their world is not a dystopia. Rather, MK and Colleen show why, amid all the desperation, there is still a community of hope, filled with people looking out for their neighbors and with survivors who offer joy, laughter, and good will.