AbeBooks Mitglied seit 1996
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AbeBooks Mitglied seit 1996
Titel: Crazy Ladies
Verlag: Ivy Books
Einband: Mass Market Paperback
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From Tennessee to New Orleans, from hippie Haight-Ashbury to a remote desert ranch, here is a novel full of love and laughter, pain and redemption, told in the women's voices of one special family, that are as rich and recognizable as our own. Living large and hanging tough, they teach us the lessons we knew we were missing....Review:
Rebecca Wells's Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood is rivaled by a fictional sibling: Michael Lee West's Crazy Ladies. West's tale of wild women down South is faster and snappier than Wells's thick bayou prose gumbo, but it has some of the same virtues--a cast of wacky characters, lively regional dialogue, and a satisfying multigenerational time frame. The scene shifts from 1932 to 1972, and from Crystal Falls, Tennessee, to New Orleans to hippie Frisco and L.A., though it's mostly rooted in Tennessee, where sunflower gardens contain deep secrets and kids can light up whole summers with lightning bugs in a jar.
The crazy lady who starts the story is Gussie, vexed by her ornery first daughter, Dorothy. When Dorothy's kid sister, Clancy Jane, comes of age, the real ruckus begins, thanks partly to Gussie's helpless preference for sweet Clancy Jane over dour Dorothy, who calls Gussie "Mother Dear" from age 6 on. Sweet Clancy Jane turns out to be headstrong, too--she runs off in a poodle skirt with Hart, who works on oil rigs, Esso stands, and the odd Cajun girl on the side. And then the '60s hit, bringing on Gussie's grandkids, Bitsy and Violet, plus some jolting social changes reminiscent of Lisa Alther's Kinflicks. Though it's spiced with horror (rape, crib death, one character buried alive), the dominant tone is breezy humor. At one point, the sister with "thighs that could break a man's neck" catches her husband and her shapelier sister "wrapped around each other like stripes on a candy cane." Not a magisterial novel, but a really good read. --Tim Appelo
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