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World of Pies Paperback – June 13, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion (June 13, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786884622
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786884629
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.1 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,165,715 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Comparisons to Fried Green Tomatoes have become so commonplace that readers begin to suspect publishers of hyperbole until they come across something as front-porch charming as this episodic debut novel, covering nearly 30 years in the life of Roxanne Milner. Beginning in 1961, when Roxanne is 12, the 10 stand-alone chapters, most ending in dessert recipes and each serving up a witty, quirky slice of a single life, take as their primary setting Annette, Tex., a postage-stamp-sized town where even the advent of the first female mail carrier is big news. Roxanne's father is the proprietor of Carl's Corsets, while her mother is immersed in housekeeping and cooking, especially in "the world of pies, " a distinctively feminine territory that baseball aficionado Roxanne is not at all certain she wants to enter. But after she participates in the town's first pie fair, she develops an interest in baking. Adroitly maneuvering an energetic, episodic and unpredictable plot, Stolz makes a series of glimpses into smalltown life more universal by dropping a new element into each chapter--a mother's old boyfriend, a new baby, the arrival of the drug culture--each revealing a lively new angle of Annette and its inhabitants. Waves in Roxanne's domestic tide pool ripple outward, reflecting the more titanic racial, social and political changes in the world at large. True, there are some redundancies and some of the chapter endings are a little too cozily pat, but overall this is engaging storytelling, as nostalgically appealing as a 10? Coke. Agent, Gail Hochman. $100,000 ad/promo; Literary Guild and Doubleday Book club selections; 6-city author tour. (June)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

YA-A collection of bright, lighthearted yet poignant stories about a close-knit family. The portrait of Roxanne, a small-town girl growing up in Texas in the '60s, begins with pie-making lessons from Mom during her 12th summer and continues until her own preteen daughter's instruction in pastry making begins. Roxanne's father runs a small shop selling bras and corsets, a source of embarrassment for the whole family, but a lucrative business. In the first episode, her mother rouses the town's ire by insisting that a pie baked by one matron's maid be entered in the local fair under the baker's own name-never mind who paid for the ingredients and provided the kitchen. Roxanne supports her mom, but quakes at the thought of the taunts she could receive when school starts. When she is 15, her mother becomes pregnant. An only child, the teen is both mortified and jealous, and feels guilty for having such thoughts. In the following story, at 17, the protagonist describes parking in a quiet spot with her current boyfriend and being caught almost in the act by Officer Fenster. In a subsequent chapter, she is a college freshman when her father dies suddenly; the grieving family is sustained not just by relatives and friends, but by the whole community. Growing up in a family and town such as this one rings true for the '60s, and the characters are just as real and revealing today.
Molly Connally, Kings Park Library, Fairfax County, VA
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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See all 54 customer reviews
The book is warm, touching, funny, engaging and fast paced.
HYEKim
And an added bonus to this read is that the book is filled with recipes for mouth watering pies.
Nancy R. Katz
It is a wonderful journey through memory lane ~~ especially during the 60s in Texas.
Busy Mom

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Dianna Setterfield on June 19, 2001
Format: Hardcover
For a refreshing and sweet trip down memory lane, World of Pies is the perfect novel. Beginning with a 12-year-old girl named Roxanne and her obsession with baseball and daily Doreen's Drugstore visits, readers are transported back in time when they were young and carefree, when all that mattered in the world was perfecting your pitch, licking melting vanilla icecream as it runs down your arm, and barbeques on the Fourth of July.
Each chapter is based on a different stage in Roxanne's life. We get to know life as it is in sleepy Annette, Texas, where the world seems to come to a standstill, where everyone knows everybody, a place Roxanne couldn't wait to leave, but also the place where she couldn't wait to return. Roxanne grows up within these few pages, and readers will delight in every word.
World of Pies is a beautiful, homespun, feel-good novel. Each story can bring about nostalgic recollection, change laughter into tears, and tickle tastebuds with delicious recipies. Karen Stolz has written the perfect book for dreamers and thinkers, a home away from home, a story to pass on to friends. A nice change of pace after a heavy-duty novel and perfect for a quick weekend read.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Nancy R. Katz VINE VOICE on June 9, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Travel along with author Karen Stolz as her book, World of Pies, takes you back to a place sadly gone.
The year is 1961 and 12 year old Roxanne, resident of a small town in Texas, and her mother are baking pies for the first ever Annette, Texas pie fair. Roxanne, though, would be happier if she was playing baseball. And as you read this lovely book, watch as Roxanne deals with first dates, first kisses, girlfriends and boyfriends. For within the pages of World of Pies is a wonderful coming of age story in the tradition of To Kill A Mockingbird. And watch as the story goes full circle as we see Roxanne at the end of the book teaching her daughter Sophie about the world of pies.
I found this book to be both charming and humorous. And an added bonus to this read is that the book is filled with recipes for mouth watering pies.
The book is also filled with wonderful and strong characters, a dash of poignancy, and a sprinkling of wit. All the necessary ingredients one needs to make a good pie and a wonderful read.
Pack this book for vacation time. You won't be sorry. It will be just right for the beach or a day spent reading under a tree.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Mary G. Longorio VINE VOICE on June 21, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I was a bit confused when I began this book; I thought it was only about the character Roxanne as a 12 year old. It is actually the story of a small town girl, Roxanne, as she grows up in the wonderful small town of Annette, Texas. Each chapter deals with a fragment of her growing up moving from baseball, to best friends to nail polish and love. Intertwined in all that is the lives of her parents and other family and the loved ones who come and go. It feels very true to the time and place, beginning in Annette in 1962 and moving where time takes her. The characters are interesting and true to life and very likable. The recopies throughout are actually pretty good, the fudge sauce divine. It is a slice of life in the 60's and 70's and anyone who ventures to Annette, Texas is in for a treat.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Busy Mom VINE VOICE on March 2, 2001
Format: Hardcover
If you're looking for a light read, this book is it! I picked it up from the library and finished it in one day ~~ now, all I have to do is try the recipes that Karen Stolz so generously put into the book!
This book is about Roxanne, who is 12-years-old in the beginning of the book and it details her growing up years ~~ from a tomboy transformed into a graceful woman. Growing up in a small town, Roxanne learns that life isn't always fair or always nice.
Between the whimiscal lifestyle of a small town, a mother who gets pregnant during Roxanne's teenage years, friends, boyfriends, crushes, first love, death, marriage ~~ it brings back memories of your growing up years. It is a wonderful journey through memory lane ~~ especially during the 60s in Texas. Roxanne is everyone's next-door neighbor ~~ the one you watch growing up.
If you're looking for a book that doesn't bog you down with gloom and despair, then I recommend this one. You won't be bogged down ~~ not with this book! There is no place like home and as Roxanne discovers, you can go home again.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Nancy T. Day on May 31, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Roxanne Milner lives in Annette, Texas, where her father owns the lingerie store, and her mother attends to the details of daily life. Always curious, always nudged by a fascination for the unusual, Roxanne comes of age in a time when a small town no longer insulates one from the larger issues: racial tension, the war in Vietnam, strangers from a parent's past. Baseball and baking contests, extended family including her beloved cousin Tommy and fabulous Aunt Ruthie, crushes and full-fledged love affairs see Roxanne through summers in Annette. Those things and delicious, comforting food from her mother's kitchen. (Recipies included!)
Ms. Stolz takes us into the Milner home and into Roxanne's heart with the tiniest details of a young woman's life. We can almost taste the density of homemade tomato soup, share the scent of a rainy night, feel loss and hope. These experiences are always tied to Roxanne's evolving place in her family. House geckos, house hunting, threadbare bathrobes--everyday objects and activities become images of passion in Roxanne's life.
With an authentic sense of Texas, Ms. Stolz writes with clarity and intimacy, never straying from the story that unfolds for Roxanne, never leaving us confused. But, yes, Ms. Stolz always makes us want more.
This was a book I loved reading.
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