Waiting on Wednesday: A Lite Too Bright by Samuel Miller

Even though I am a HUGE fantasy enthusiast and mainly blog about fantasy, I love making exceptions for the other books I love or books that I’m just really excited about. In this week’s Waiting on Wednesday, I want to talk a contemporary: A Lite Too Bright by Samuel Miller.

Waiting on Wednesday is Hosted by Breaking The Spine.

Paradise Fears

Search for Samuel Miller anywhere and you’ll probably end up confused. There are SO MANY Samuel Millers out there, Goodreads won’t even direct you to a specific author page. Anyway, this particular author is also a musician and the lead singer of one of my all-time favourite bands: Paradise Fears. You can bet I’ll have their discography on repeat while I read A Lite Too Bright!

A Cross-Country Train Journey

Arthur Louis Pullman the Third (the main character) goes on a cross-country train journey through America “to chase the secrets of his namesake grandfather,” who’s a famous Salinger-esque novelist. If there’s one thing I love about contemporaries, it’s road trips and travel!

“Perfect for fans of David Arnold”

Oh man, they really got me there. I LOVED Kids of Appetite and I actually briefly met David Arnold last year which was wonderful (I got him coffee*, he was so grateful!) so if I’m promised a book that’s “perfect for fans of David Arnold”,  it better deliver because I’m WAY too excited!

* For real, I was an intern at Best of YA at the time and they organise YALFest NL!


I think YA needs more grandparents. Whether that’s in contemporary or fantasy or romance, it doesn’t matter. I just feel like we need more! Although the synopsis makes it clear Arthur’s grandfather isn’t actually present, the story is practically driven by this family member. I’m hoping it’ll be beautiful!

The Dangerous Pullman Fanbase

I love this part of the synopsis because it reminds me of The Hazel Wood a lot?! Like, obviously THW is a fantasy but I loved the fanbase element of it because fandoms and such are just part of our lives now? Like, can you even write a contemporary these days and like… not include at least one fandom? This is a fictional fandom, though, and I think it can be very interesting!

About A Lite Too Bright

Perfect for fans of David Arnold and Robyn Schneider, Samuel Miller’s stunning debut follows Arthur Louis Pullman the Third as he embarks on a cross-country train journey to chase the secrets of his namesake grandfather, a famous Salinger-esque novelist.

Arthur Louis Pullman the Third lives in his grandfather’s shadow. The first Arthur Louis Pullman, an iconic Salinger-esque author who wrote the American classic A World Away, died in Ohio a week after he disappeared from his family’s California home. What happened in that week—and how much his actions were influenced by his Alzheimer’s—remains a mystery.

After Arthur is stripped of a college scholarship and begins to lose his grip on reality, he’s sent away to live with his aunt and uncle. There, Arthur discovers a journal written by his grandfather, the narrator pining for something he can’t quite understand and the final sentence containing a train route and a destination.

Eager to escape his own demons, Arthur embarks on a cross-country train ride, guided only by cryptic clues left in his grandfather’s dementia-influenced writing. But as Arthur gets closer to the real story, his journey is complicated by a shaky alliance with a strange girl who’s keeping secrets of her own and by escalating run-ins with a dangerous Pullman fan base. Arthur’s not the only one chasing a legacy, and how much will he risk to find out the truth?

Katherine Tegen Books | Goodreads | Book Depository*

A Lite Too Bright releases May 8th. Will you be reading the book? Are you just as excited as I am?

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