Nobody’s Pilgrims

A novel

By: Sergio Troncoso


This masterful novel with a thriller twist follows three runaway teenagers racing across the country in a stolen truck, chased by a drug cartel trying to get their hands on the deadly biological weapon hidden in the vehicle. 


This masterful novel with a thriller twist follows three runaway teenagers racing across the country in a stolen truck, chased by a drug cartel trying to get their hands on the deadly biological weapon hidden in the vehicle.

Seventeen-year-old Turi escapes from his abusive family by reading. He hopes to actually escape by saving up from his work at a chicken farm in the frontera, near Ysleta, Texas. He believes the beautiful New England setting of his favorite book, Connecticut, will be the perfect home for him. So, Turi sets off on the road with Arnulfo—an undocumented teenager he met at the farm, and Molly—a lonely girl looking to build a better life. The boys start their trip by hitching a ride with an elderly man, but they leave him behind and steal his truck when they begin to suspect he’s in the middle of an illicit operation, and hiding a dangerous secret. Unfortunately for the three runaways, the secret is hidden in the truck and results in a drug cartel chasing them down, the release of a virus, and the total breakdown of society around them.

With pensive, likable characters traveling and coming of age together, and a thriller twist that drives the narrative with intensity, Nobody’s Pilgrim is a can’t-put-down book with heart. The teenagers’ journey builds on the classic bildungsroman The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, but author Sergio Troncoso adds a gritty, frontera twist with the tension of No Country for Old Men.

Sergio Troncoso was born and raised in El Paso, Texas. His previous works include A Peculiar Kind of Immigrant’s Son, From this Wicked Patch of Dust, and The Last Tortilla. He often writes about the United States-Mexico border, immigrants, families and fatherhood, and crossing cultural, religious, and psychological borders. Among the numerous awards he has won are the International Latino Book Award for Best Collection of Short Stories, Kay Cattarulla Award for Best Short Story, Premio Aztlan Literary Prize, Southwest Book Award, Bronze Award for Essays from ForeWord Reviews, and the Silver and Bronze Awards for Multicultural Fiction from ForeWord Reviews.

Troncoso has taught fiction and nonfiction at the Yale Writers' Workshop in New Haven, Connecticut for many years. He has served as a judge for the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction and the New Letters Literary Awards in the Essay category. His work has recently appeared in New Letters, Yale Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Texas Monthly, and New Guard Literary Review.

The son of Mexican immigrants, Troncoso grew up on the east side of El Paso in rural Ysleta. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College and received two graduate degrees in international relations and philosophy from Yale University. A Fulbright scholar, Troncoso was inducted into the Hispanic Scholarship Fund's Alumni Hall of Fame and the Texas Institute of Letters (TIL). He currently serves as TIL President.

1 review for Nobody’s Pilgrims

  1. Ben Fountain, PEN/Hemingway-winning author of Brief Encounters with Che Guevara
    The castoffs and castaways of Nobody’s Pilgrims hit the road in search of the American Dream, a long shot made longer by the pack of human devils hot on their trail. In this superb novel, Sergio Troncoso gives us a fresh take not only on the great American road trip, but on the American Dream itself in all its glorious and increasingly fragile promise. The propulsive force of this novel, and the destination it ultimately brings us to, left me wanting more, and yet feeling completely satisfied. As only the best novels do.

    Octavio Solis, author of Retablos: Stories From a Life Lived Along the Border
    In a world marked by cruelty, corruption, bigotry and disease, Troncoso shows us there’s still room for love. With his finely honed prose style, he takes us on a journey across the country with three young hungry teens whose dreams are the only lifelines they have left. A powerful, compelling read.

    Rigoberto Gonzalez, author of Butterfly Boy: Memories of a Chicano Mariposa
    Nobody’s Pilgrims offers a stark vision of a country whose social ills have sullied the path to the pursuit of happiness. Yet its intrepid protagonists Turi and Molly persevere, charting their own map and adapting, like generations of dreamers, immigrants, and adventurers before them, to the latest hurdles of our troubled world. Sergio Troncoso has given us a timely dystopian tale heavy with anguish but invigorated by resilience.

    Elizabeth Crook, author of The Which Way Tree and Monday, Monday
    Eloquent, bold and terrifying, Nobody’s Pilgrims is a fresh new take on the ancient themes of innocence pursued by evil, and of the young finding their way through a chaotic and uncertain world. Turi, Arnulfo and Molly are original and uniquely endearing, and they’re a pleasure to travel with, even on such a frightening journey.

Only logged in customers who have purchased this product may leave a review.