I have read the Piggly Wiggly books and fell in love with them a long time ago, so it was great news to me when this new offering came on to the market. As a person who was born in the East and moved to the South, and then Western United States, it is so great to come across a writer who truly knows how to “present” the deep flavor of that amazing area; from the delectable foods, to the extremely interesting and sometimes “far out” characters, this author has the effervescence of the Deep South running through his blood.
In this third book, the big news in Second Creek, Mississippi is the wedding event of the decade. The mayor of the small Delta town, Mayor Hale Dunbar, Jr., is getting married to the woman of his dreams. He’s waited a long time to settle down with his fiancée, Gaylie Lyons. In fact, Mayor Hale – who is now seventy-one years old and who the locals call “Mr. Choppy” – first fell in love with Gaylie in the 1940’s. At that time he was a butcher and the owner of Second Creek’s Piggly Wiggly market, which is now closed. After a long time, they’ve met up with each other again and the romance blossomed just as it had when they were kids. The only hard part about this whole thing is that they can’t seem to set a date for the ceremony. Why? Because Gaylie’s children are having a huge problem with their mother marrying this strange man with the strange name, and moving down to this odd town in the middle of nowhere.
When her kids come to visit so that she and Mr. Choppy can convince them that their relationship is absolutely the best thing ever, this book turns into one of the most hilarious stories you’ll ever read. Many characters are introduced, including a woman by the name of Euterpe Simon who wants to buy the old Piggly Wiggly market and turn it into a place where she can offer piano lessons to the locals. The author also brings back beloved characters like the ladies of Stone Creek who are referred to as the Nitwits. This group of ladies practically runs the town; they are the “busy-bodies” that every small hamlet on the planet offers who wear cute hats and make sure that the town runs smoothly, and that lives are only affected by happiness and joy. They are the group that “step in” and take over with Gaylie’s children – and they certainly won’t quit until they convince these pretentious kids that their mother and Mr. Choppy truly belong together.
The locals and locations are fabulous. My favorite is Evening Shadows, which is a huge house owned by a Nitwit, where the whole town is planning on having the wedding of the decade. As a reader, you’ll want to get into your car as you get into this series, drive down to Mississippi, and hunt down this “gang” of people. This is Book III of the Piggly Wiggly series, and my suggestion to all readers is to go back and read them all. They are highly addictive, and you’ll be so looking forward to “hearing” from your friends in Second Creek all the time!
Until Next Time,