Seventy-seven-year-old Marylou Ahearn is going to kill Dr. Wilson Spriggs come hell or high water. In 1953, he gave her a radioactive cocktail without her consent as part of a secret government study that had horrible consequences.
Marylou has been plotting her revenge for fifty years. When she accidentally discovers his whereabouts in Florida, her plans finally snap into action. She high tails it to hot and humid Tallahassee, moves in down the block from where a now senile Spriggs lives with his daughter’s family, and begins the tricky work of insinuating herself into their lives. But she has no idea what a nest of yellow jackets she is stumbling into.
Before the novel is through, someone will be kidnapped, an unlikely couple will get engaged, someone will nearly die from eating a pineapple upside-down cake laced with anti-freeze, and that’s not all . . .
Told from the varied perspectives of an incredible cast of endearing oddball characters and written with the flair of a native Floridian, this dark comedy does not disappoint.
About the Author
ELIZABETH STUCKEY-FRENCH is the author of the novel Mermaids on the Moon and the short story collection The First Paper Girl in Red Oak, Iowa. She lives in Tallahassee, Florida, where she teaches fiction writing at Florida State University.
- Hardcover: 352 pages
- Publisher: Doubleday (February 8, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0385510640
- ISBN-13: 978-0385510646
This is a truly dark tragedy – comedy that explores the goal of one woman who has had her life ruined by a secret government experiment with radioactive material and is bent on destroying the doctor that ruined her life. Well, that is the plan for Marylou Ahern, now using the name Nancy Archer after the movie “Attack of the 50 Foot Woman”. Instead of infiltrating Dr Brigg’s family, she somehow becomes part of it.
The story is told through each family member’s point of view and there is great character development of each except that Dr. Briggs is a bit left out. The story seems to move at a slow pace, but there is enough humor and snappy dialogue that will keep you interested in this quirky drama. The book has been compared to “Little Miss Sunshine” and I think that is really true, although there is a dash of Carl Hiaasen to keep everything in a weird perspective. I really enjoyed this one and look forward to another story from Elizabeth Stuckey French.
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