Sasha Goldberg, the main character in Anya Ulinich’s absurdly funny, coming-of-age novel, seems out-of-place just about everywhere. She’s a mixed-race, Jew living in a town in Siberia called Asbestos 2. Her only solace is in an after-school art program. When she becomes pregnant, her mother takes the baby and sends Sasha to an art-school in Moscow. Her mother wants her to forget her new daughter and make something of herself. Sasha finds this hard to do. She suffers a break-down and decides to become a mail-order bride so that she can go to America and search for her long-lost father. While the plot may seem depressing Ulinich’s wonderfully written, first novel is strangely heart-warming.