Southern culture -- humor

Ranchero by Rick Gavin

Ranchero by Rick Gavin

I've got me a new boyfriend and his name is Rick Gavin. I don't actually know him, but he is the author of the darkly comic debut novel Ranchero, which made me cringe and laugh and scribble "I ♥ Rick" in pink glitter pen on all my notebook covers.

Nick Reid was a cop in Southwest Virginia. Something Happened (it's never explained in the book), and Nick ends up as a repo man down in the Mississippi Delta. One day, Nick and his partner Desmond set off on a routine repo to get payment or take back a flat screen TV from Percy Dwayne Dubois.

"But Percy Dwayne wouldn't give in. No, instead he went all white-trash philosophical and figured that since the world was against him, he might as well fight it. He hit Nick over the head with a fireplace shovel, stole the mint-condition calypso coral–colored 1969 Ranchero that Nick had borrowed from his landlady, and went on a rowdy ride across the Mississippi Delta." *

Suck Your Stomach In & Put Some Color On! What Southern Mamas Tell Their Daughters That the Rest of Y'all Should Know, too! by Shellie Rushing Tomlinson

Suck Your Stomach In & Put Some Color On!

I loved my Southern Mama and my Southern Grandma, so when I found Suck in Your Stomach In and Put Some Color On! I knew that I would love it, too.  It is chock full of wisdom from mothers across the South--plus a running commentary by the author which is hysterical!

There are such wonderful pearls of wisdom as:

"My mom’s advice on raising children:  ‘If it washes off or grows out, it doesn’t hurt anyone.  Don’t worry about it!’”

“Mama said, ‘Just because it fits doesn’t mean you oughta wear it.’”

“My mama told me ladies never answered the door barefoot!”

“My grandmother advised me to marry a man my age or a little younger, ‘because they don’t improve with age.’  I now know what she meant.’”

Each Little Bird That Sings

Deborah Wiles

Comfort Snowberger is well acquainted with death since her family runs the funeral parlor in their small southern town, but even so the ten-year-old is unprepared for the series of heart-wrenching events that begins on the first day of Easter vacation with the sudden death of her beloved great-uncle Edisto.

Middle School

Southern Fried Divorce: A True Story

By Judy Conner

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"Quirky Southern humor brings the ridiculous to light in this narrative of a woman's battles with marriage, divorce, and motherhood. Judy Conner's ex-husband, referred to only as 'That X,' figures prominently through anecdotes that attempt to humiliate him, but that also reveal the passionate beginnings of a relationship turned sour. Hilarious vignettes that provide a window into down-home culture include the rules to Redneck Roulette, instructions on how to cook the best Christmas roast south of the Mason-Dixon line, and tips for synchronized swimming at the World's Fair with your dog. Tragedy and comedy intertwine in this piquant tale of lost love with a Southern accent."

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Mermaids in the Basement by Michael Lee West

Mermaids in the Basement

 Michael Lee West’s Mermaids in the Basement finds screenwriter Renata DeChavannes grieving from the recent loss of her mother and stepfather in an airplane crash. She retreats to her family home in the Outer Banks where she eats uncontrollably. While she is buying her movie-producer boyfriend a sweater in a little clothing store, she happens to see the tabloid article telling that her absent love is rumored to be dating his latest movie’s star in faraway Dublin.

Devastated, her drinking, too, begins to get out of control. One night, a drunken Renata has a beach bonfire and burns her manuscript. When she wakes up not knowing what she has done, she looks through all of her drawers to find it but instead discovers a letter from her mother instructing her to contact her paternal grandmother in order to find out the stories of her mother’s “dirty deeds.”

A Red State of Mind: How a Catfish Queen Reject Became a Liberty Belle

By Nancy French

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"The heartland's answer to Sarah Vowell and David Rakoff, Nancy French tells it like it is--one laugh-out-loud anecdote after another about a red state American's experiences living in the blue states.

"For the first 20 years of her life, all Nancy French knew of the world was Paris--Paris, Tennessee, that is. When the former homecoming queen trades in cow-tipping, big hair, and the Catfish Capital of the World for a new life in the Big Apple, she is in for a real education. With a keen sense of humor, French discusses everything from the South's obsession with church attendance to the blue-state notion that red staters think as slowly as they speak."

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Bless Your Heart, Tramp! and Other Southern Endearments

By Celia Rivenbark

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The author offers humorous observations on the human condition, particularly in the South, covering such topics as grits, beer, redneck women, television, ATMs, politics, work, funerals, friendship, and men.
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