Literary Quote of the Month

“For poems are not, as people think, simply emotions (one has emotions early enough)—they are experiences,” … Rilke, The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival by Ken Wheaton... A Review

"The pages are "thick with the smell of gumbo"...
As You Crack the Spine of...
The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival by Ken Wheaton

Welcome to the sleepy little backwoods town of Grand Prairie, Louisiana... Father Steve Sibille has taken over the parish in Grand Prairie where the most excitement comes from listening to confessions involving little old ladies taking nips out of their husbands Wild Turkey and trying not to get caught. But things are stirring a little in Grand Prairie... if it weren't enough to have pubescent teenage altar girls instead of altar boys, and a runaway gay priest hiding out at his home, there's also Vicki who stirs Father Steve in ways that make him pray for guidance. Top that with a new preacher, charismatic as all heck, who just moved in across the tracks and who's got on eye on Father Steve's flock. What's a priest to do?! What Father Steve does is seek advice from Miss Rita, who's over 100, loves Crown Royal, and can't get enough cracklins to go with her whiskey...

Miss Rita doesn't say too much about the altar girls, or about Vicki (except she thinks Father Steve needs a woman- even though he's a priest), but she plants the seed for Grand Prairie's First Annual Rabbit Festival...

"You need a fair... A festival or something... Something to keep your people busy with your church so they don't run off to his..."

And so an idea is born and a story that will make you laugh out loud and wonder, "what next!" Ken Wheaton is a great writer. The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival is light-hearted, fun and an adventure in reading. His characters have a certain charm and resilience that just make you love them. You can tell Ken Wheaton writes with a genuine affection for his characters as they deal honestly with the situations handed to them and no one is ostracized for being "different". Gently touching on racism and sexual preference, these issues are part of the big picture of the book, but does not overwhelm the story. Hilarious one moment, tender the next, I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent in Grand Prairie. I could practically taste all that great food at the bake sales, Turkey fry, and the "February Surprise", where "a meal so stupendous, so amazing, so colossal, so mouthwateringly delicious, you'll want to SLAP YA MAMA!" If that weren't enough I felt a real attachment to the community and vested in the characters. The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival is great writing, a great story and rich, well developed characters. My reading group just read this and loved it. There is a reading group guide in the back of the book with discussion questions, along with Ken's Cajun Cooking Primer- Gumbo for Dummies (along with a Gumbo recipe) and a recipe for Ken's Crawfish Etouffee, a rich buttery crawfish dish served over rice. Enjoy reading the First Chapter of The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival from Kensington Publishing.

*P.S. This Book is Kindle Ready!

2 comments:

fredamans said...

Great review!

Sounds like a fun book to read, so I'm adding to my list!

Suzanne said...

Hi fredamans,
Everyone in my book club couldn't stop laughing as we read this book. It made for quite a lively discussion! Enjoy it!

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Suzanne's book recommendations, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

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