Fannie Flagg has been around forever and her books read like an old friend stopped by to chat. The Whole Town’s Talking is a light breezy read that entertains.
Elmwood Springs, MO is home to the Nordstoms. Lorder moved there from Sweden, farmed, ordered a mail order bride – beloved Katrina, became the town’s first mayor, and chose the place on the hill for the cemetery. Naturally he was the first to arrive at the resting place. And much to his surprise, he “woke up” and could hear town folk visit his grave. Soon other seniors passed away and joined him. All in all, Flagg keeps us posted through the decades on the folks who are alive and prospering, and the folks who die. Some pass too young – boys who went to Vietnam. Some arrive and are annoyed that they still have to hear the town talk (old man Henderson). Some arrive at the cemetery, participate, and then suddenly leave.
She mixes real life history with Elmwood Springs growth, and we enjoy the company of the founders, their offspring, and their grandchildren. This is Americana at its best – chatty, catty, generous, patriotic, and greedy. The author knows people and keeps her sense of humor as she regales us with town talk. The Whole Town’s Talking is just plain fun – a good read on a rainy day that will keep you chuckling as you turn the pages. After a few chapters, go stroll through your neighborhood and find something or someone to talk about. Make sure it’s good or juicy! Enjoy.