Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Daugharty's Small Town Made Up of Minds to Match

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Daugharty's Small Town Made Up of Minds to Match

Article excerpt

PAWPAW PATCH

A novel by Janice Daugharty

259 pages, HarperCollins, $22

MUST'VE BEEN because she gave out that she was going to marry lawyer Archie Wall, Chanell Foster reckons. OK, so she told a lie. Lord knows it was a white one, the better to keep T.P., her no-count, ruttish ex-husband, from hanging around like a bad smell.

But why, suddenly, is almost nobody in Cornerville, Ga., speaking to her? The worst of it is that customers of her beauty shop have dropped her like a used Kleenex, leaving her a few dollars this side of welfare. Truth to tell - and Chanell, an in-your-face firecracker of a woman, insists on the truth - Cornerville has discovered a wicked secret about her, a secret she didn't even know herself.

OK, she accepts it and strikes back, to the point of making a public spectacle of herself to get her revenge. In a tight plot whose last turn comes only on the last page, she also gets it and all her customers back, all apologies and solicitousness, no less. …

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