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Southern Living (Ballantine Reader's Circle) Paperback – August 26, 2003

3.4 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Intrusion: A Novel
A loving couple, grieving the loss of their son, finds their marriage in free fall when a beautiful, long-lost acquaintance inserts herself into their lives. Learn More
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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Selby, Georgia: a town with many faces. Here's Margaret, the transplanted New Yorker, who writes a column for the newspaper, the Selby Reflector (how quaint). Here's Donna, the young beauty horribly scarred after an automobile accident, who now works in the produce department at the local supermarket and searches for some meaning in her life (how tragic). And here's Suzanne, the alcoholic wife of a prominent surgeon who is so desperate to make her husband love her that she's planning to fake being pregnant (how pathetic). Singly, the three women are forces to be reckoned with: Margaret, the outspoken; Donna, the desperate; Suzanne, the scheming. Together, they are a hurricane poised to swoop through Selby. With sharply drawn characters and pitch-perfect dialogue, this tragicomic entertainment makes fine reading for the Fannie Flagg crowd. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

Praise for Ad Hudler and Househusband

“Winning . . . [A] breezy comic outing.”
—The New York Times

“You’ll think it’s a man’s world until you read Househusband, Ad Hudler’s hilarious debut. It will make you laugh, cry, and eat—move over Martha Stewart: wait until you taste his tortellini!”
—ADRIANA TRIGIANI
Author of Big Stone Gap

“[An] engaging debut . . . With self-deprecating humor and adroit expression, Hudler delves deep into the American psyche of gender roles. . . . The dialogue rings with authenticity.”
The State (Columbia, SC)

“A funny and insightful book . . . Should be required reading for men who wonder what their wives do all day.”
—LORNA LANDVIK
Author of Patty Jane’s House of Curl


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Product Details

  • Series: Ballantine Reader's Circle
  • Paperback: 330 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1 edition (August 26, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345451295
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345451293
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,488,133 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Being a Yankee forcefully transplanted to Southern soil can be traumatic. I know --- born and bred a New Yorker, I have been uprooted several times to towns deep in the heart of Texas and back in Old Virginny. From the Bible verses on the front page of one local rag to themed Christmas trees to the near-religious fervor accorded high school football games, things Southern seemed as foreign as any overseas exotica from old National Geographic magazines. Meanwhile, Southern mores and manners confounded me. Telling someone "That Mrs. Thingummy is just so smart!" was not, I learned, a compliment but a stinging putdown that meant Mrs. Thingummy had no decorative aspect to speak of and, therefore, all that was left to comment on was her mind.
Yet so many Southern habits, ideas and traditions now crowd my mind and household that I can't imagine not having experienced the place (I still live in Virginia, but Arlington doesn't really count as The South, despite its having brought forth that region's very scion, Robert E. Lee). Ad Hudler, author of the new comic novel SOUTHERN LIVING, has been similarly affected. In one interview, Hudler talks about how often during five years in Georgia he heard women use the term "cute," pronounced as "ke-YOOT," meaning that the thing/person/behavior described had their firm (although not necessarily long-lasting) seal of approval. (I can confirm this, having myself been in tiny towns full of boutiques whose purpose seems otherwise hazy and heard fellow shoppers say things like "Lookit this li'l Beanie Baby --- isn't it ke-YOOT?")
Hudler is also a transplanted Yankee, having grown up in Colorado with a firmly feminist mother. He found his little nuclear family living in Dixie when his journalist wife took a job with the Macon, Georgia newspaper.
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
I was excited when I found this book as I had lived in the South as a Yankee transplant. I LOVE to read tales of small towns, quirky characters and southern communities. The book got off to a charming start but by the end of Chapter 5 I was finished (I DO hate not finishing a book!). The writer's obvious chip on his shoulder/liberal slant was a turnoff and the Christ bashing went too far (I tried to see where it would/could/might be funny but it just fell flat and wasn't remotely funny). I think Hudler could have written this story line more artfully and subtly without being so in-your-face. At first I thought I was just being sensitive but see that others share my views..... Also, the author's elitist voice came through in his writing. It was distracting and muddled an otherwise promising story. His snide tale about the man from Marion, Indiana tells me Mr. Hudler thinks little of midwesterners, too.

If you enjoy small town tales, check out Garden of Eden by Eve Adams (pseudonym). Now THAT is the charming tale I hoped Southern Living would be.
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Format: Paperback
I'm a transplant to the deep South from a major Northeastern city. Although I've come to love and appreciate Southern culture, I nonetheless laughed aloud at the author's commentary on decidedly un-Yannkee staples--such as deep-fried veggies--to be found in abundance south of the Mason-Dixon Line (seriously, why bother?).

I was giddy with delight at Hudler's hilarious description of aesthetic nightmares of certain wealthy Southern homes so overly decorated that an unsuspecting Northerner may wonder if a fabric and trimmings store had exploded nearby, raining down endless layers of gaudiness upon the brass-and-burgundy abode.

However, although I'm far from a Southern Baptist, am neither a fundamentalist nor an evangelical, and I most certainly don't fit the Bible Belt mould, I was nonetheless offended at Hudler's blatantly disparaging, cruel mockery of Jesus and all things Christian. Why the author had to resort to such tasteless scenes as 2 main characters hysterically laughing at what they perceive as the absurdity of a figure of Jesus holding his bleeding heart in his hands is beyond me. Would Hudler dare mock other any other faith in the same way? I doubt it. After all, Christianity remains the one religion of which our politically correct culture still allows merciless mockery.

Sadly, the author fills this would-be enjoyable book with outrageous--and to some, gravely offensive--vitriol.
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By A Customer on September 9, 2003
Format: Paperback
an absolute hoot of a book, very well written! having lived most of my life in atlanta, and have many friends from macon, i could relate.
ijust started househusband today and am already almost finished...can't wait for a new one!!!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The best part about this book is Ma. I thought the pace was slow although It began briskly, it slowed to a crawl . I got the chop-shop part when the heroine's car was stolen. I had a hard time staying with this book. The rivalry over lunch where were the meals I couldn't forget. I felt more for the cook and all he did was grunt.
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By A Customer on November 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed Hudler's Househusband, and found Southern Living an even better read.
Boy, does this guy have women down pat.
How does he do it?
His charachters are so finely drawn that I could not put the book down. It's a superb read.
What a wonderful peek at the genteel South. I can't imagine anyone not enjoying this book.
I'd recommend it to anyone. Highly!
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