Wednesday, December 08, 2010

A Piggly Wiggly Christmas by Robert Dalby

Life always has unexpected surprises in Second Creek, Mississippi, the setting of Robert Dalby's Piggly Wiggly novels.  If it isn't the weather, it's fireflies.  Gaylie Girl Dunbar compares it to Santa Fe, "Special places determined to do things their own way and not lose their identity."  It takes a tragedy to bring the town together to "Not lose their identity" in Dalby's latest, A Piggly Wiggly Christmas.

Now that Mr. Choppy Dunbar is mayor, Gaylie Girl has plans to put her own mark on Second Creek.  She and her friends, the Nitwits, a wealthy group of women, organize Caroling in the Square, bringing church choirs together to sing around the square on Christmas Eve, hoping to make it an annual event that will attract visitors and the media.  It takes a great deal of work to gain cooperation from the various choir directors, but the Nitwits are up to the task.  

But, is the town up to the job of recovering when an electrical fire destroys half the old buildings on the square the week before Christmas?   This might be a larger task than the Nitwits can handle on their own.  It might take some new blood, some "cream of courage" soup, and a little Second Creek magic to bring the Christmas spirit back to Second Creek.

Once again, Dalby's story of small town life includes a few everyday miracles, a great deal of hard work, and life's problems.   One of the Nitwit's is suffering from Alzheimer's, and it's getting progressively worse, with moments of lucidity.  The mayor's secretary gives birth prematurely.  And, of course, there's the fire.  As usual, in Second Creek, the Nitwits and the community rally to help each other.  Although this book dragged in places, particularly those dealing with trying to get the choir directors and Lady Roth to cooperate, it's still a treat to return to Second Creek, Mississippi.  Robert Dalby's books reflect the pettiness, and the best, of small town life.  And, it's small town love that is reflected in A Piggly Wiggly Christmas.

A Piggly Wiggly Christmas by Robert Dalby.  Penguin Group (USA), ©2010. ISBN 9780399156779 (hardcover), 272p.

FTC Full Disclosure - The author and the publisher sent me copies, hoping I would review it.


Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

I enjoyed his first book, so I'll definitely be checking this one out. Small town life has its good points and bad points! I like that his fictional version includes both. :)

Lesa said...

It does include both, Elizabeth. But, if you only read his first one, you've missed a few in between. Just a heads up.

susied said...

Lesa, I always enjoy reading your reviews of all the different books you read. I've added many to my wish list. Thank you!

Lesa said...

You don't know how much I enjoy sharing these books with everyone, Susie. Thanks for reading my blog, and letting me know some of the books are making your wish list!

Beth Hoffman said...

I love how diverse your reading taste is, Lesa! This one sounds light and cute; perfect fare for this time of the year.

Lesa said...


I have so many books in my closet, I can find something for almost any reading mood, except when you just can't read. And, just yesterday, I received 9 more in the mail. That's heaven!

Mary Carver said...

I am reading your book A Piggly Wiggly Christmas , and I am enjoying it with one exception. I was born and bred in the Mississippi Delta, and I know that no town in the Delta has a Square. You only find them in the hill country...Oxford, Calhoun City, and here in Hernando where I live now. There are others, but not a single one in my beloved Delta!