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Looking for Salvation at the Dairy Queen: A Novel Paperback – June 9, 2009
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"This is Susan Gregg Gilmore’s first novel, but her voice is similar to that of Fannie Flagg. Readers of Southern stories will enjoy the poignant self-discovery journey of this lovable heroine."
"Gilmore tells her tale with gentle humor and genuine regard for her characters."
“If I had to make a comparison, I would compare Susan Gregg Gilmore to Fannie Flagg, but Gilmore more than holds her own. This is an unusually engaging novel by a very fine writer who knows exactly what she is doing.”
—Lee Smith, author of The Last Girls
“Susan Gregg Gilmore’s debut novel, Looking for Salvation at the Dairy Queen, is storytelling at its best, entertaining and lively and full of surprises. Catherine Grace Cline, the endearing witty heroine, gives her domestic journey titles of Biblical proportion as she finds more than salvation along the way.”
—Jill McCorkle, author of Carolina Moon
From the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Susan Gregg Gilmore is the author of the novels Looking for Salvation at the Dairy Queen and The Improper Life of Bezellia Grove. She has written for the Chattanooga Times Free Press, the Los Angeles Times and the Christian Science Monitor. Born in Nashville, she lives in Tennessee with her husband and three daughters.
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Anyone who has ever lived in a small town or been a member of a small church, especially in the South, will recognize the many characters. The book contains humor, anger, rebellion,disappointment, loss, and eventually, awareness of one's place and calling. Many of the scenes center around the local Dairy Queen, where Catherine Grace and her sister go for ice cream, where Catherine Grace goes to think, and where she gets some good advice from a friend.
The book is entertaining, with an ending that satisfies. And if readers recognize, in these endearing characters, people from their own youth, that's just an added benefit.
The characters are vivid and real from her adoring sister Martha Ann to Gloria Jean Graves, the unflappable neighbor who becomes a surrogate mother for Catherine Grace, to Eddie Franklin, the Dairy Queen employee who can make chocolate dipped cones better than anyone and gets that perfect curlicue at the top every time.
This is a tale of growing up in the South, a story of dilly bars and perfect red tomatoes, of first love and shopping for a prom dress, of impatiently waiting for the good Lord to answer your prayers just like you want Him to. But more importantly, it is the story of the ties that bind us to the people we love and what happens when those ties are cruelly broken, when we discover that people's actions can belie what they say in very hurtful and long-lasting ways. It is a story of love and redemption told with lots of humor that will have you teary-eyed one minute and laughing the next. But most of all, it is a story of hope and learning that, strange as it seems, a jar of homemade strawberry jam really can make all your dreams come true.