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Friday, August 11, 2017

Flagg's storytelling makes up for frustrating beginning

Have you ever picked up a free book or two just because the cover looked interesting?
I recently picked up "Daisy Fay & the Miracle Man" by Fannie Flagg, who is, of course, well-known for authoring the book "Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe." 

"Daisy Fay & the Miracle Man" is worth the read, despite
the first half being seriously frustrating. (Photo by Anna Jauhola)

I so enjoyed Flagg's style in "Fried Green Tomatoes" that I didn't think I could go wrong with "Daisy Fay." For the first half of the book, I was wrong. 
It's set in the South during the 1950s, and focuses on Daisy Fay Harper, an 11-year-old whose father's a drunk and mother is fed up with it. The book is composed of Daisy Fay's journal entries. The first half of the book was not fantastic. I was annoyed by how it seemed to jump all over, but that's life and Daisy Fay's journal entries reflect that pretty well. 
Once we jumped into 1956 about half way through the book, Daisy Fay's life really seemed to take shape. It was in a serious upheaval all through the first half. 
The second half of the book lived up to critics' acclaims on the back cover - "Side-splittingly funny!" and "A hilarious, endearing novel!" Throughout the first half of the book, I just shook my head at how dumb and irritating Daisy Fay's dad was.
Several times, I set the book down in disgust and my husband asked why I kept reading. I replied, "I'm invested in it now. I have to see how she turns out."
Throughout the second half, I giggled through almost every page. 
The ending - which I will not divulge - was particularly hilarious and satisfying. It left me wanting Flagg to write another book just so I could know what actually happened to Daisy Fay Harper. 
So, if you do pick up this book, stick through the first half so you can get to the second.
It is worth the two-day read.