Ann Vaughan Richards
Miss Woman appears one rainy day, and she raises her second-story apartment window above the Victoria Thrift Store. In this sleepy Southern town, she belts out the blues to the accompaniment of an upright piano. Not just the blues, but "deep, low down, gut wrenching blues. Mad Dog blues. Memphis Blues, Don’t Care Blues, You Can Have I Don’t Want Him Didn’t Love Him Anyway Blues." And the result? Someone takes a shotgun and blows off the top of Glenna Bledsole’s head.
On our way to unraveling the mystery with the narrator, a divorcee renewing a long-gone high school affair with the town’s chief of police, we encounter Southern grotesques so disarming that their grotesquerie develops into a part of us. It’s as if C. G. Jung told us to sit down and read this book, always noting that . . . Ahem, doesn’t she remind you of yourself? And look at that old guy living in a trailer with his mutt . . . wouldn’t a part of you enjoy doing that? And Glenna Bledsole? Well even if you do agree that her head should have been blown off, or at least given a good two-by-four, attention-getting whack, hmm, doesn’t her anger and righteousness pull a slender, familiar thread?
By the time we reach the novel’s end, we realize that Glenna Bledsole’s death was just one of many mysteries involved—including Miss Woman’s identity.
ISBN 0-942979-77-X, paper, $12.95 Sale $6.50
ISBN 0-942979-78-8, cloth, $26.00 Sale $13.00
This is Ann Vaughan Richards’ first novel.
| Excerpt From
sang the blues. Deep, low down, gut wrenching blues. Mad Dog Blues, Memphis
Blues, Don’t Care Blues, You Can Have Him I Don’t Want Him Didn’t Love Him
Anyhow Blues. And the words and notes floated out over the courthouse square in
the sweltering month of June. They bounced off the plate glass store windows and
rolled down the alleys. Wailing, moaning, misery-loving blues.