Title: Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man
Author: Fannie Flagg
# pages: 3.5 (very good)
Date published: 1981
Genre: women’s fiction
Challenge(s): 888 Challenge, Shelfari’s Readers of Romance Fall Challenge
“Hello there…my name is Daisy Fay Harper and I was eleven years old yesterday.”
Synopsis (from Barnes&Noble.com): In Fannie Flagg’s high-spirited first novel, we meet Daisy Fay Harper in the spring of 1952, where she’s “not doing much except sitting around waiting for the sixth grade.”
Sassy and irreverent from the get-go, Daisy Fay takes us on a rollicking journey through her formative years on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. There, at The End of the Road of the South, the family malt shop freezer holds unspeakable things, society maven Mrs. Dot hosts Junior Debutante meetings and shares inspired thoughts for the week (such as “sincerity is as valuable as radium”), and Daisy Fay’s Daddy hatches a quick-cash scheme that involves resurrecting his daughter from the dead in a carefully orchestrated miracle. Along the way, Daisy Fay does a lot of growing up, emerging as one of the most hilarious, appealing, and prized characters in modern fiction.
Random Thoughts: Written in the form of Daisy Fay’s journal, Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man shows us what it was like growing-up in the rural south in the 1950s through the eyes of a little girl. In turn hilarious and poignant, it was a great read.
Favorite scene: When Daisy Fay overhears one of the high school students tell the school nurse that she wasn’t feeling good because she has her period and the nurse gives the girl a cold Coca-Cola. Daisy Fay decides that this is a great way to get free Coke, so she goes to the nurse and says she has her period, too. When the nurse tells Daisy Fay’s favorite teacher, Mrs. Underwood, what Daisy Fay is doing, Mrs. Underwood asks Daisy Fay if she knows what her period is. Daisy Fay says, oh yes, and she knows what a comma and an exclamation point are, too. Mrs. Underwood then asks her if she knows what a Kotex is. Here’s how that conversation went:
She said, “Do you know what a Kotex is?”
“Sure, Momma has a box of them at home.”
She said, “Do you know what they’re for?”
“I sure do,” I said. “My momma told me they were for dusting in hard-to-reach places.”
Mrs. Underwood settled back, crossed her legs and said, “I guess I’m going to have to tell you about your period.” And she did. She told me all about it and it meant your were a woman and all. I thought I was going to die right there on the spot. I’ve never heard anything so terrible in my whole life. I hope she is wrong and I never get a period. I am eleven years old and entirely too young to hear about it. Can you imagine my mother not knowing what Kotex are for and dusting the house with them? Well, her mother can just tell her what they are for. I’m not getting into the facts of life. I haven’t heard one fact of life that I liked yet. (p. 127-128)
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