Sunday, October 19, 2008
Review: Miss Julia Throws a Wedding
Miss Julia Throws a Wedding by Ann B. Ross
Reasons for reading: it's a wonderful series!; Southern book for Triple 8 Challenge
Amazon review: ". . . Miss Julia finds herself at a loss at the beginning of Miss Julia Throws a Wedding. Although her own marriage was about as uplifting as a burned pot roast, she is mortified to learn that Hazel Marie, her dead husband's mistress, proposes to move out of Miss Julia's house and into a life of sin with the perpetual bachelor J.D. Pickens. At least Deputy Sheriff Coleman Bates and attorney Binkie Enloe, longtime lovers, have finally decided to do the right thing. Now if only they would do it the right way. Intent on preserving the niceties, Miss Julia takes over the wedding for Coleman and Binkie, vetoing their plans for a quick courthouse union and struggling to pull together a tasteful formal event with one week's notice. To complicate matters, a neighborhood thief and troublemaker, Dixon Hightower, has escaped from police custody. With only her imperious nature and the force of her convictions, can Miss Julia create the wedding of her dreams for Binkie and Coleman?"
First line: "I've a good mind to sell this house."
My thoughts: Miss Julia doesn't disappoint in her 3rd adventure! I liked this one more than the previous book, Miss Julia Takes Over, because it didn't focus on Brother Vern trying to get Little Lloyd's inheritance and it focused Binkie and Coleman, whom we didn't see much of last time. Plus, I love a wedding!
Miss Julia is in her usual fine form of wanting to fix everyone's problems (whether they want them fixed or not) and wanting them fixed in a way that meets her code of propriety. But she does show some vulnerability, which helps make her more human and lovable, when she worries that everyone will go off to their own happy endings and leave her alone, which is what prompts the first grouchy line about selling the house. For all of her primness, she really does love all the young people in her life. It's particularly touching how much she's come to love Little Lloyd, the byproduct of her late husband's affair with Hazel Marie.
The wedding turns out to be a hoot and a holler. And the wedding combines with the mysteries of Dixon Hightower and why people are gathering at the new church "family life centre" (read: gymnasium) across the street to make a hilarious ending.
One review called the book "thin," which I find a bit irritating. It's not going to win the Booker Prize, but the series is fun, lighthearted and charming, and I'd much rather enjoy a thin book than endure a "worthy" thick one. Get to know Miss Julia, you'll be glad you did!
For another Miss Julia endorsement, here's Raidergirl's review of this installment in the series.