Welcome to Higby Author:Mark Dunn Following the national success of Ella Minnow Pea, this second novel from Mark Dunn brings the same charm and love of good language to a small town in the South. A Robert Altmanesque comedy, Welcome to Higby follows the hilarious goings-on in a small town in northern Mississippi over Labor Day weekend. From mousy Carmen Valentine, ... more »whose guardian angel, Arnetta, gives her penny-pinching shopping tips, to addled old Hank Grammar, who preaches Jesus to his neighbors' pets, Higby's townsfolk have a knack for getting into -- and trouble getting out of -- outrageous situations.
Blessed with an unerring eye for dead-on details, Dunn lovingly traces the eccentric and touching lives of his characters, offering an intelligent yet heartwarming vision of life in small-town America. Welcome to Higby is a Southern comical tale about simple dreams both realized and thwarted by all the complexities of the human heart.« less
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I had first encountered Mark Dunn's writing in Ella Minnow Pea, so I was surprised and disappointed by this book. Apparently Pea is the exception, many of his other books are low humor, sexual jokes, sit-com level writing. That's the case with this. Tiring, unamusing, not a stand out piece of writing.
It seems like one of those meandering-not-really-going-anywhere books at first, with lots of characters and story lines. But then, the story lines begin to intersect and the characters interact and before you know it, you're hooked. Dunn is a master of understatement and character development. This is a charming and insightful book.