Day 09 – A book you thought you wouldn’t like but ended up loving
I can’t remember any book that I didn’t expect to like and wound up loving. Liking, yes; loving, no. Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café by Fannie Flagg was no different: I didn’t end up loving this book, but I certainly enjoyed it much, much more than I expected.
I’m not one to read the books from the NY Times bestseller list, or any other “best seller, must read or your life is wasted” list. I figure the more it’s pushed, the less I’ll like it–and I’m normally correct. I’m also not a fan of “southern” books as I simply don’t identify with them, and often just find them annoying as a result. Finally, this particular book had a theme in the story that I disagree with and wasn’t sure I would like a story that revolved around it. So 3 strikes at the start.
Right from the beginning I found the characters to be well developed, and I liked them—even the not-so-likable ones as they played a part in forming the story. I adored the way the story was told: back and forth, in narrative and newspaper articles and remembrances. I loved the blending of early 20th century history and stories, with modern day. I adored the little gossip news that pulled the story together. The underlying theme that I was concerned about wasn’t shoved in my face and I actually forgot about it as I read. The book ended well with no loose ends. Yet at the end it didn’t totally grab me — and I can’t put my finger on why.
Still, I can say that I didn’t expect to enjoy this book and was pleasantly surprised that I did. I originally rated this higher than most books that I read and recommend it to those who enjoy a good fictional novel about people and relationships.
And for fun … they might not have baked this at the Whistle Stop Café, but it sure is delicious. I used Lyle’s Golden Syrup in place of the honey, and added 1 tsp cinnamon and 1/2 tsp allspice. Next time I’m going to add 1/2 C chopped walnuts and maybe some raisins.
PS: I so love her recipes, I bought her cookbook. I’m 2/3 through reading it and I’d like to bake everything in the book!