Book Review: One Last Stop

By Comet Ziemer

August doesn’t believe in fate. She doesn’t believe in soulmates or destiny. Everything happens because you do it, and nothing can interfere with that. When she moved to New York City all alone, August was ready to carry that ideology with her for the rest of her life. That was, before she boarded the Q train and met a very…different girl.

Jane is everything August never knew she needed. She’s new, different, free, wild, and an instant pluck at Augusts’ heart. But August soon starts to realize that something else is different about Jane. She looks like she was pulled directly from the 1970’s. She doesn’t know a whole lot about pop culture, and seems to be unaware about the environment she is in. August realizes that Jane is stuck in time on the Q train, not being able to leave. Can August figure out her feelings while also saving the woman she loves? Who knows. But one thing is for sure, destiny has something to do with it.

One Last Stop is a book written by Casey McQuiston, originally published in June, 2021. It became an instant New York Times bestseller and is liked by over 90% of readers. Being the 2nd novel released by McQuiston, it had a lot to live up to after their debut book Red, White, And Royal Blue became a smash hit. For McQuiston’s inspiration for the novel, they credited the Outlander Tv Series. Talking to Insider in an interview, they described their inspiration for the setting as, “public transit is a liminal space where your life crosses paths with another person’s life like five million times for half a second.”

One Last Stop gives a lot of detail and facts about what it was like to live as a queer person in the 1970’s. During the book, Jane talks about different ways she learned to stand up for herself and her identity and things that happened to her because she was a lesbian.

But there is a big problem that I have with One Last Stop. The whole book is only 417 pages long. For me, that is a decently sized book for reading. And while it usually takes me about 2 weeks to finish a book that long, One Last Stop took me nearly 2 months. I can’t quite make it exact, but the book felt so long with each page. Even when I was super invested in the plot, I felt so bored reading it because it felt very wordy and many things felt very unnecessary. 

For example, in the book, there is a side plot of August’s mom trying to figure out what happened to her brother when she was a kid. There are multiple times in the book where this side plot takes over so many pages. And personally, I feel like it didn’t contribute much to the story. There were many smaller details that it added but other than that, it felt very unneeded and just acted as an excuse to make the book longer.

Another thing that I didn’t like was the fact that the chapters were so unnecessarily long. When it felt like there should be a new chapter, there was just a space in the page and it moved to a different setting. With only 17 chapters, the book felt longer than it actually was. When I finally finished the book, it felt like a chore I had finally finished.

I loved the story. Each character was amazing and it was such a good plot, the main issue was that it felt way too long. I recommend this book to anyone who likes a lot of world building and plots. But if you are looking for a read that mainly sticks with one or two plots, You might have a harder time getting through this book.

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