Monday, 7 April 2014

Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg

Ninny Threadgoode is a resident at the Rose Terrace Nursing Home. She is befriended by Evelyn Crouch, who talks with her every week while her husband is visiting his mother there. Ninny is in her eighties now and recalls her past with a clarity that the present does not have.

Through her stories Ninny transports Evelyn to Whistle Stop in Alabama, the place where Ninny grew up, married and raised her family. The Whistle Stop cafĂ© was the hub of the community, for both black and white people, when segregation was still the norm. Their’s was a close knit community which had it’s secrets and little by little these are revealed to Evelyn.

I know I am probably the last person in the world to read this book and there are already hundreds of reviews out there for it.  It really doesn’t need any further reviewing but I just could not resist telling you all how much I enjoyed this book.

It was loaned to me by my best friend some time ago and I have finally got around to reading it.  It is one of her favourite books and I can absolutely see why. It has a marvellous range of characters and an array of subplots which kept me completely engaged without leaving me behind.

The chapters move around in time and place and Fannie Flagg achieves this seamlessly and at no point did I feel confused about where we were in the story. It is told from various points of view and I just loved reading The Weems Weekly. This is the local weekly news bulletin written by the postmistress Dot Weems and in which much of the activities of the small town are portrayed. Wonderfully done these newsletters were amusing and succinct.

Each character is unique and utterly believable and I found myself empathising with most of them at one point or another through the book.  This is a multi layered novel and contains everything that a good novel should; good characters, atmosphere and wonderful storytelling.

I know a lot of people have already read this book but if you haven’t then I highly recommend it. It is full of human interest that will appeal to many readers.

The book cover that I have above is from the copy I actually read. There is a more up to date cover but I really like this one as it portrays the atmosphere of the book so well.

ISBN:  978 0099143710

Publisher:  Vintage

Price (based on today’s paperback price on  £5.59

Total saving:  £236.12

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