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Welcome to the World, Baby Girl! is the funny, serious, and compelling new novel by Fannie Flagg, author of the beloved Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe (and prize-winning co-writer of the classic movie).
Once again, Flagg's humor and respect and affection for her characters shine forth. Many inhabit small-town or suburban America. But this time, her heroine is urban: a brainy, beautiful, and ambitious rising star of 1970s television. Dena Nordstrom, pride of the network, is a woman whose future is full of promise, her present rich with complications, and her past marked by mystery.
Among the colorful cast of characters are:
Sookie, of Selma, Alabama, Dena's exuberant college roommate, who is everything that Dena is not; she is thrilled by Dena's success and will do everything short of signing autographs for her; Sookie's a mom, a wife, and a Kappa forever
Dena's cousins, the Warrens, and her aunt Elner, of Elmwood Springs, Missouri, endearing, loyal, talkative, ditsy, and, in their way, wise
Neighbor Dorothy, whose spirit hovers over them all through the radio show that she broadcast from her home in the 1940s
Sidney Capello, pioneer of modern sleaze journalism and privateer of privacy, and Ira Wallace, his partner in tabloid television
Several doctors, all of them taken with--and almost taken in by-Dena
There are others, captivated by a woman who tries to go home again, not knowing where home or love lie.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
With home-cooked, Southern literary flair, Fannie Flagg (Fried Green Tomatoes) returns with Welcome to the World, Baby Girl! "Baby Girl," as she is lovingly referred to by her sweet, country cousins, is Dena Nordstrom, a tall, blonde, corn-fed girl who makes it big in Manhattan. Ms. Nordstrom is now the top TV anchorwoman in the city, beating out veteran journalists and making ungodly amounts of money. Although her life seems charmed, Dena is frazzled and miserable. She drinks uncontrollably, is a borderline compulsive liar, and is forced to undergo therapy because of her stress-induced ulcer. Her psychiatrist, Dr. O'Malley, falls madly in love with her, of course, and sends the blonde bombshell to a close colleague, Dr. Diggers. Living up to her name, Diggers shovels up a mountain of dysfunction and forces Dena to face her mysterious past; all the while the good doctor reports back to brokenhearted O'Malley about her patient's progress. Meanwhile, back at the station, Ms. Nordstrom has made friends and enemies in very high places. Her greatest ally is Howard Kingsley, the Cronkitesque reporter who wields power with more ease than most seasoned politicos: "He closed the door and handed the driver a ten-dollar bill. 'Take this young lady where she wants to go for me, will you? And be careful, she's valuable property.'" It's a good thing she has friends like that, because her boss, Ira Wallace, makes George Costanza from Seinfeld look like a scrupulous saint. When Wallace hires a nasty but effective mole by the name of Sidney Capello to dig up garbage on celebrities, Nordstrom has a head-on collision with his sense of ethics (or lack thereof) and gets Capello canned. Or so she thinks. Welcome to the World, Baby Girl! is very much like its star, Dena Nordstrom: pretty, scattered, confused, and sometimes interesting. It's a long ride from the Whistle Stop Cafe, and readers who enjoy Jan Karon's Mitford Fall series will most likely be the biggest fans of Flagg's third novel.From the Publisher:
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