Saturday, June 14, 2014

Just Jennifer

Dollbaby by Laura Lane McNeal (Pamela Dorman, July 3, 2014)

In the summer of 1964 Ibby Bell’s father dies unexpectedly and her mother drops Ibby and her father’s cremains at the New Orleans’ home of his mother, the eccentric grandmother Fannie who Ibby did not know even existed until just before her father’s death.  Fannie’s eccentricities can get the better part of her and she often spends time in an asylum, but Ibby is in awe of this woman whose family history is full of as many secrets and tragedies as her grand mansion is locked doors.  With the help of Fannie’s cook Queenie and her daughter Dollbaby, Ibby slowly learns the ways not only of Southern living, but Fannie’s ways of living as she creates a new life and a new family for herself.  Reminiscent of The Help, Dollbaby starts a little slowly but then quickly takes on a life of its own as Ibby learns about Civil Rights first hand and learns how to love, forgive and above all, live life with unabandoned joy in spite of all the sorrow and sadness.  Another Library Reads pick for July

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