Big Stone Gap - Big Stone Gap, Bk 1 Author:Adriana Trigiani Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, the tiny town of Big Stone Gap is home to some of the most charming eccentrics in the state. Ave Maria Mulligan is the town's self-proclaimed spinster, a thirty-five year old pharmacist with a "mountain girl's body and a flat behind." She lives an amiable life with good friends a... more »nd lots of hobbies until the fateful day in 1978 when she suddenly discovers that she's not who she always thought she was.
Before she can blink, Ave's fielding marriage proposals, fighting off greedy family members, organizing a celebration for visiting celebrities, and planning the trip of a lifetime -- a trip that could change her view of the world and her own place in it forever. Brimming with humor and wise notions of small-town life, Big Stone Gap is a gem of a book with a giant heart...« less
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I first read Trigiani in a compilation book of American female authors. I was intrigued by Trigiani's writing style and decided to give this novel a try as my first full read from her. What a story! A novel full of life lessons all can relate to and characters that you'll love and hate. I loved the book so much, that I immediately read the sequel "Big Cherry Holler" the next day! Easy to read- you could plow through both books in a day.
The characters made me feel warm and cozy even if the story seemed a waste of time. The story was ridiculous and trite, but escaping to the beautiful scenery and joining in the company of a local drug store pharmacist, a book-mobile driver and a bunch of fun-lovin' other characters was embarrassingly fun. My literary senses were entirely assaulted and I love it. Kinda kinky in a bookworm way... I guess sometimes your story life needs a little trashy spice!
This is the second book I've read by Adriana Trigiani and I intend on reading everything else she has written! Loved this story about "Ave Maria," a single woman in her 30's who, after her mother dies, finds that she needs a change. Full of wonderful characters, this book does not disappoint!
This charming book reminded me of the movie "Waitress" (starring Keri Russell and Nathan Fillion) ... in fact, so much did it remind me of the movie that, remembering the name of the female writer/director of "Waitress" was some form of "Adrian," I had to make sure the author and the director were not the same person. (They aren't. This is Adriana Trigiana; "Waitress" was Adrienne Shelly.)
Still, if you liked "Waitress," you might like this book. The qualities of "Waitress" this reminds me of are the tone (that hard to define way of being naturally quirky, effortlessly conveying the idea that the characters are just like this without being aware that it's unusual), the small-town setting, and the piercing insight of the main character's revelations into the world around her and her place in it.
It's a great book to curl up with on a rainy day or a slow Sunday. I read a lot of books in quick 5-minute "bites" of time; this was not a good book for that type of reading. It's a book to take some time with in order to enjoy the progress of the rolling storyline. (Not that the storyline is "slow" - there are plenty of interesting plot developments - but it doesn't have intermittent climactic moments or chapter-by-chapter cliffhangers as so many modern novels do.)
I had never read anything by Trigiani before, but this book may have made me a fan. I will be ordering more of her novels ASAP.
One of those books where the characters become your friends, you know and understand them so well. Life in Big Stone Gap begins to feel like home. And Ave Maria feels like she could have been your sister, you are that much like her. This is a feel good book and I savoured the last few pages, as I hated for it to come to an end. Yes, I recommend it. You'll be glad you read it.
I am in the minority here. I really did not like this book. The main character was unlikable and the circumstances seemed contrived. I slogged through the whole thing thinking that it would get better because of the many positive reviews both here and on amazon but for me, it didn't.
This was a fast read. When I got to the last page I couldn't believe the book was done, now I am on to the 2nd book. Can't wait to see what the movie will be like (since the author is the one directing and writing the movie). I think a lot more time with her father would have been nice, but the time that was spent was very quick!! I don't read many fiction stories much anymore but I sure liked this semi-autobiographical fiction.